WikiLeaks suspect's trial near super secure NSA

December 15, 2011 - 2:22 AM

FORT MEADE, Md. (AP) — The military intelligence complex an hour outside Washington where the WikiLeaks case goes to court this week is known as a cloak-and-dagger sanctum off-limits to the rest of the world.

That reputation is only partly true.

In many ways, Maryland's Fort Meade is an ordinary Army post, albeit one with a 5,000-acre complex and a golf course. It's also home to the super-secure compound of the code-breaking National Security Agency.

That's the irony: The soldier accused of one of the largest intelligence heists in U.S. history, Pfc. Bradley Manning, will stand trial in a courtroom on the same post as the intelligence agency charged with covertly collecting and cracking secrets.

The government calls the theft and leak of secret diplomatic and military documents a serious threat to national security.