"... U.S. troops said they were aware of the circumstances of Bergdahl’s disappearance — that he left the base of his own volition — and with that awareness, many grew angry.
“The unit completely changed its operational posture because of something that was selfish, not because a solider was captured in combat,” said one U.S. soldier formerly based in eastern Afghanistan who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the search. “There were military assets required . . . but the problem came of his own accord.”" Washpost
The search in Paktika was eventually called off, after U.S. officials acknowledged that Bergdahl had been taken to Pakistan. " Washpost
Do I think the PoW exchange was proper and justified? I do, but there are unanswered questions about the responsibility of this soldier for his own capture and the extent of his culpability under the Uniform Code of Militsry Justice for the crime of desertion to the enemy.
This photograph evidently shows Bergdahl shortly after he became a prisoner of war. He doesn't look particularly abused or even unhappy.
Bergdahl seems to have become disillusioned with the forever wars of the Bush and Obama Administrations. He was an infantryman. He had prior experience of war in Iraq, but on the particular night in question in Afghanistan he apparently left his unit's position and walked away into the darkness.
Desertion occurs in every war as well in peacetime. This happens in every army. It happens in the US Army and the US Marine Corps. It happens in the British Army, the French Army, etc.
Sgt. Bergdahl is a sergeant because it is US Army policy to promote American soldiers who are held as PoWs as though they were servng with the rest of their age/grade contempories.
It was necessary to obtain the release of this US soldier. It is now necessary to decide if he should be punished for desertion in the presence of the enemy. pl