Lady Gaga has defended whistleblower Bradley Manning.
A military judge sentenced Manning to 35 years in prison Wednesday morning after a politically divisive trial in which the 25-year-old US Army private was convicted of sharing over 700,000 government files with WikiLeaks.
Gaga, who is no stranger to controversy, revealed her shock at the verdict when she raged: “The news of Bradley Manning’s sentencing is devastating. If our own can’t speak up about injustice who will? How will we ever move forward?” she wrote on Twitter.
The Applause star’s outcry follows on the heels of a campaign supported by several celebrities backing Manning’s cause and calling for a fair trial.
Russell Brand, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Oliver Stone and Moby were among those who participated, filming segments in a five-minute video entitled I Am Bradley Manning.
“It’s enshrined in our constitution that an individual has the right to release information and disseminate information that makes the powers that be uncomfortable,” Moby says.
Russell meanwhile championed the soldier’s bravery in the face of serious consequences.
Manning was acquitted of aiding the enemy, a charge for which he could have faced the death penalty, but was convicted on multiple other counts, according to CBS News.
“To take a risk and take a stand knowing that in all likelihood you will be persecuted, penalized, demonized and punished for it. That’s incredibly bold,” Russell says in the clip.
Gaga is often known for making political statements in her music and to the public.
As a gay rights advocate, she spoke out against the Russian government on August 5 after politicians passed a law banning “homosexual propaganda” among minors.
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