Bergdahl could be sentenced to life in prison for disappearing from his military post.
The story of Bowe Bergdahl is not over yet. In the latest development, Bergdahl is expected to plead guilty to charges of desertion and misbehavior in front of the enemy. Bergdahl’s sentencing will begin on October 23, according to Vice. He faces up to five years for desertion, while misbehavior charges carry the threat of a life sentence.
“We continue to maintain careful respect for the military-judicial process, the rights of the accused and ensuring the case’s fairness and impartiality during this ongoing legal case,” said Paul Boyce, an Army spokesman, as reported by the Associated Press.
Army Sgt. Bergdahl became one of America’s most controversial figures when he disappeared from his post in Afghanistan on June 30, 2009. Bergdahl was captured by the Taliban and kept in captivity for five years before he was released in exchange for five Taliban prisoners, in a highly criticized deal made by former President Obama.
The circumstances of Bergdahl’s disappearance have been the subject of speculation for years. Some people have accused him of cooperating with the Taliban. President Donald Trump, in particular, has been very vocal about Bergdahl’s case, calling him a “no-good traitor” and implying he deserves to be executed.
Sgt. Bergdahl. Source: WikiCommonsBergdahl, now 31, explained he left his post to raise a DUSTWUN, an alert meaning “duty status—whereabouts unknown”. He wanted to receive a national audience so he could bring attention to abuses of power in his military unit. During Bergdahl’s time in captivity, he was kept in darkness, beaten, chained to a bed and neglected.
The story of Bergdahl was discussed in-depth during the second season of NPR’s podcast Serial. Host Sarah Koenig interviews Bergdahl, along with military officials related to the case, to offer a non-bias perspective on Bergdahl’s intentions and suspicions surrounding his choice to desert. In the series, Koenig largely debunks the myth that American soldiers were killed while searching for Bergdahl.
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