As if this story didn't "drag" on enough....pun intended, but now Bradley Manning, the soldier convicted of leaking hundreds of thousands of government secrets not only gets sentenced to 35 years in prison but says he wants to live out those years as a woman....not sure prison is the place you want to make that statement buddy.

"I am Chelsea Manning. I am female," the Army private wrote in a statement read on NBC's TODAY show Thursday by his attorney. "Given the way that I feel, and have felt since childhood, I want to begin hormone therapy as soon as possible. I hope that you will support me in this transition."

Manning, 25, was sentenced to 35 years in prison on Wednesday after having been found guilty of 20 charges ranging from espionage to theft for leaking more than 700,000 documents to the WikiLeaks website while working in Iraq in 2010.

"I also request that, starting today, you refer to me by my new name and use the feminine pronoun (except in official mail to the confinement facility)," he continued in the statement posted on the show's web site. "I look forward to receiving letters from supporters and having the opportunity to write back."

Manning signed the letter "Chelsea E. Manning."

Good luck Brad........I mean Chelsea.  Don't drop the soap.