Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, is hoping for a face-to-face with Pfc. Bradley Manning, the soldier accused of leaking classified military documents that were later posted on whistleblower website Wikileaks.
Kucinich, who sits on the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, sent a letter to Defense Secretary Robert Gates asking for a chance to meet with Manning at the Marine Corps Base in Quantico, Va. "As you know, I am concerned about reports of his treatment while in custody that describe alarming abuses of his constitutional rights and his physical health," Kucinich writes.
Kucinich cites a 2009 article as the basis for his concern over Manning's treatment while in custody. The article, written by surgeon Atul Gawande, states that "without sustained social interaction, the human brain may become as impaired as one that has incurred a traumatic injury."
Kucinich is urging Gates to coordinate the meeting so the congressman can assess Manning's current state of mind and whether he is mentally fit to stand trial.
The military has adamantly denied any mistreatment involving Manning. The prisoner remains in lockdown with no trial date set.