A decade of Pentagon struggles bared at trial

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By DAVID DISHNEAU and PAULINE JELINEK, Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — Some of the Pentagon's most painful themes of the past decade have played out at the court-martial of Army Pfc. Bradley Manning.

The trial is about a young soldier who orchestrated the largest leak of classified documents in U.S. history. But it also dramatized some of the most confounding struggles at the Defense Department as it maneuvered through the longest period of war in the country's history.

Those include the Pentagon's internal conflict over gays in the military; the struggle to find enough troops to fight two wars at once, and questioning the wisdom of counterinsurgency campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan, which often frustrated even the highest military commanders.

The trial judge, Col. Denise Lind, is expected to begin deliberating in the next couple of days over Manning's punishment.

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