Ex-POW Bowe Bergdahl Deserves to Spend the Rest of His Life in Prison

Let's hope that Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl enjoyed those five years as a prisoner of war in Afghanistan, because he's now facing a life sentence behind bars. On Wednesday, March 25, the military charged the former soldier with desertion and misbehavior before the enemy.


Last May, Bergdahl was returned to America in a possibly illegal prisoner exchange orchestrated by President Obama, who offered up five Guantanamo Bay detainees to secure his release from the Taliban. Yup, the president negotiated with terrorists. To secure an alleged deserter.

In 2009, Bergdhal wrote an email home to his dad, lamenting his post in eastern Afghanistan, and went so far as to say he was ashamed to be an American. Three days later, he wandered off into the desert with plans to start a new life and denounce his citizenship, according to a note he reportedly left in his tent. 

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After Bergdahl went missing, six men lost their lives searching for him. Spc. Cody Full, also a member of the platoon at the time, explained, "A huge thing in-country is not building patterns. Well when you are looking for a person every day that creates a pattern. While searching for him, ambushes and IEDs picked up tremendously. Enemy knew we would be coming. IEDs started being placed more effectively in the coming weeks. Ambushes were more calculated, cover and concealment was used."

So now Bergdahl has been charged, although not yet convicted. The sentence for the desertion charge is only five years, but if found guilty of misbehavior before the enemy, he could be facing life in prison. He's also looking at a potential dishonorable discharge, reduction in rank, and forfeiture of all his pay.

As he should. Lives and countless resources were lost as a result of his selfish decision to desert his post. If he felt so strongly about it, he should have just quit, and taken whatever lumps came with it, even a dishonorable discharge. He may be getting one of those anyway, but at least he wouldn't have spent five years as a POW of the Taliban's. That cannot have been fun.

A date for the trial has not yet been set, and he is not currently in "pretrial confinement or any form of arrest or restriction."

Do you think Bergdahl deserves to go to jail if he's convicted of desertion?


Image via US Army

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