It is well established now that Bowe Bergdahl, the Army sergeant for whom Barack Obama traded five top Taliban jihad commanders to get him out of captivity in Afghanistan, is a deserter. But there are also numerous indications that Bergdahl is something even worse: a traitor to the United States of America.
Although the White House continues to ignore the evidence that Bergdahl deserted, every day new revelations make the case increasingly compelling. According to Colonel David Hunt, Bergdahl “called his unit the day after he deserted to tell his unit he deserted.”
Nathan Bradley Bethea, a former infantry officer who served with Bowe Bergdahl, wrote in the Daily Beast on Monday that “Bergdahl was a deserter, and soldiers from his own unit died trying to track him down.” Bethea refuted reports that Bergdahl got separated from his unit while on patrol:
Make no mistake: Bergdahl did not “lag behind on a patrol,” as was cited in news reports at the time. There was no patrol that night. Bergdahl was relieved from guard duty, and instead of going to sleep, he fled the outpost on foot. He deserted. I’ve talked to members of Bergdahl’s platoon — including the last Americans to see him before his capture. I’ve reviewed the relevant documents. That’s what happened.
Army intelligence several times discovered where Bergdahl was being held, but special forces commanders declined to rescue someone they considered to be a deserter.
The Pentagon concluded the same thing in 2010: “Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl walked away from his unit, and after an initial flurry of searching the military decided not to exert extraordinary efforts to rescue him, according to a former senior defense official who was involved in the matter.” This official said that the evidence that Bergdahl had deserted was “incontrovertible.”
But is he a traitor as well? Here are five reasons to think so:
5. The precision of post-desertion IEDs.
Former Army Sgt. Evan Buetow, who served with Bergdahl and was present the night he disappeared, says flatly:
“Bergdahl is a deserter, and he’s not a hero. He needs to answer for what he did.” Even worse, Buetow recounted that days after Bergdahl vanished from the U.S. base, there were reports that he was in a nearby village looking for someone who spoke English, so that he could establish communications with the Taliban. Soon afterward, Buetow recalled, “IEDs started going off directly under the trucks. They were getting perfect hits every time. Their ambushes were very calculated, very methodical.”
Bergdahl knew where the trucks would be going and when; said Buetow: “We were incredibly worried” that the Taliban’s “prisoner of war” was passing this information on to his captors in order to help them place their bombs most effectively.
4. Defense Department “concerns.”
The Defense Department was concerned enough about this possibility to launch a full investigation. Fox News reported Monday that Bergdahl — “both in his final stretch of active duty in Afghanistan and then, too, during his time when he lived among the Taliban — has been thoroughly investigated by the U.S. intelligence community and is the subject of ‘a major classified file.’ In conveying as much, the Defense Department source confirmed to Fox News that many within the intelligence community harbor serious outstanding concerns not only that Bergdahl may have been a deserter but that he may have been an active collaborator with the enemy.”
3. His email to his father.
Just days before he left his unit, Bergdahl wrote to his father in somewhat less than patriotic terms: “I am sorry for everything here. These people need help, yet what they get is the most conceited country in the world telling them that they are nothing and that they are stupid.” He declared: “I am ashamed to be an American. And the title of US soldier is just the lie of fools. I am sorry for everything. The horror that is America is disgusting.”
His father responded: “OBEY YOUR CONSCIENCE!” Bergdahl apparently did by deserting and seeking out the Taliban.
2. The note he left behind.
Fox News reported Tuesday that according to “sources who had debriefed two former members of Bergdahl’s unit,” the deserter “left behind a note the night he left base in which he expressed disillusionment with the Army and being an American and suggested that he wanted to renounce his American citizenship and go find the Taliban.”
1. His conversion to Islam and self-description as a “mujahid.”
The Taliban claimed in 2010 that Bergdahl had converted to Islam and was teaching its jihadists how to make bombs. There is no reason to take anything that Taliban spokesmen say at face value, but secret documents revealed Thursday afternoon corroborate the claim. According to one of these documents, dated August 23, 2012, “conditions for Bergdahl have greatly relaxed since the time of the escape. Bergdahl has converted to Islam and now describes himself as a mujahid. Bergdahl enjoys a modicum of freedom, and engages in target practice with the local mujahedeen, firing AK47s. Bergdahl is even allowed to carry a loaded gun on occasion. Bergdahl plays soccer with his guards and bounds around the pitch like a mad man. He appears to be well and happy, and has a noticeable habit of laughing frequently and saying ‘Salaam’ repeatedly.”
Why has none of this been known until now? These secret documents have just been revealed, and Bergdahl’s fellow American soldiers have just been released from a gag order that threatened them with legal action if they spoke about Bergdahl’s desertion. Why the cover-up? Did the Obama administration want to spare itself the embarrassment, after Fort Hood jihad mass murderer Major Nidal Hasan and his would-be imitator, Pfc. Naser Abdo, of yet another Muslim soldier turning traitor?
The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Martin Dempsey, has said that “it’s premature” to assume that Bergdahl will not be investigated. Still, although it would be the just and proper thing to investigate Bergdahl for both desertion and treason, it does seem unlikely that he will be investigated for either. Such an investigation would embarrass the Obama administration even more than it has been already and the mainstream media will do all it can to make sure that such humiliation is kept to an absolute minimum. John Boehner, for his part, will just burst into tears and give Obama whatever he wants.
To investigate, much less to try Bowe Bergdahl, despite the fact that evidence of his misconduct continues to mount, would require an honest president, a robust opposition party, and a media determined to uncover the truth. Strike one, strike two, strike three.