Long-term solitary confinement is a similar slow form of torture. It leaves no marks. Stop talking for nine months, and you forget how to talk. Stop listening and you forget how to listen. Hallucinations begin. The brain devolves.
Long-term solitary was used in the Charleston SC brig on prisoner Jose Padilla. This, along with stress interrogation, reduced his mind to shambles.
By January 2011, after almost nine months imprisonment, Bradley Manning was beginning to speak only slowly and haltingly, evidence that the regime of confinement was having some effect. According to FireDogLake, his guards began to play brutal games, taking turns giving him contradictory orders. And...
"... After Manning returned to his cell from recreation, Averhart came to his cell, declared he was, for all practical purposes, Manning’s God. Then, he ordered Manning be stripped and put on suicide watch..."Manning was required to sleep naked under bright lights.
Protests occurred, growing ever-larger for several months. The committee of 300 lawyers whose protest letter is below may have helped impel this decision, as well as the many letters to the President written by individuals. And the protests and arrests.
At the end of April, Manning was moved to Fort Leavenworth and put in medium custody, where he has human contact and was doing well when last heard from.