FORT MEADE, Md. —
Prosecutors began presenting testimony about the cables Wednesday when a former State Department official testified on cross-examination that the agency's computer network would have anyone with Manning's top-secret security clearance unrestricted access to the cables. The government alleges he stole them.
Earlier Thursday, the military judge ruled that Manning's lawyers can offer evidence contradicting the government's assertion that he revealed classified information in a leaked battlefield video from Iraq.
The judge, Army Col. Denise Lind, took judicial notice of the document, a preliminary step toward admitting evidence.
The document is an assessment by a former U.S. Central Command official of video showing a 2007 U.S. helicopter attack in Baghdad that killed at least eight people, including a Reuters news photographer and his driver. His assessment was that the video should be unclassified.
That contradicted evidence offered by prosecutors. They have presented an assessment from a Pentagon official that the video revealed military tactics, techniques and procedures and should be classified.
Manning has acknowledged giving the video to WikiLeaks but denies that it revealed national defense information.
The most serious charge Manning faces is aiding the enemy, which carries a potential life sentence.