Six US soldiers from Bowe Bergdahl’s Afghanistan 30-member platoon unanimously told FNC’s Megyn Kelly that he was a deserter from their frontline outpost and should be court martialed by the Army.
The GIs also stressed that Bergdahl needs to have an opportunity to give his side of the story for “closure” and receive all due process under the military justice system.
Watch the interview embedded below and draw your own conclusions.
Afghan terrorists who may have been affiliated with the Haqqani Network released Bergdahl last Saturday after five years of captivity in exchange for five high-level Taliban commanders, a development which has created a firestorm of controversy for the Obama administration.
On The Kelly File, Bergdahl’s former team leader Sgt. Evan Buetow said “initially after he left, we knew that he had deserted. We knew that he was trying to find the Taliban or trying to find someone who could speak English so he could talk to the Taliban. I mean, that was known to us at the time when we were on the ground right after he left.”
Spc. Cody Full, who was Bergdahl’s roommate during training, asserted that US military members are held accountable when they violate the military justice code and that it would be unfair to consider Bergdahl some kind of hero and not be punished.
The soldiers also took a dim view of National Security Advisor Susan Rice’s claim on national TV that Bergdahl served with honor and distinction.
Responding to how some White House aides have slammed the soldiers for speaking out, Buetow declared, “This is not about politics. This is about the fact that Bergdahl walked away from us, went to try to find the Taliban, and we know that for a fact. And we were all there… he’s not a hero, he did not serve with distinction, that’s a spit in the face to everyone who joined the Army and died looking for him…”
Added Full, “When you’re in a combat zone, it doesn’t matter if you are left, right, independent, Jedi, whatever you want to be, OK? The only thing that matters is you have an American flag on your shoulder, and he’s my brother, he’s my brother, he’s my brother — we’re all going to ride together, we’re all going to die together. I don’t know how he felt about us, but we would all die for him — and he left.”
Contrary to the reasons reported by Rolling Stone for Bergdahl allegedly hating the Army, the soldiers claimed that Bergdahl’s disillusionment came from not enough action, and that Bergdahl wanted to do “more aggressive stuff” that the military prohibited.
The soldiers agreed that attacks against US forces in the area increased after Bowe Bergdahl disappeared, although they were unwilling to say that Bergdahl had anything to do with it. “It’s way too hard to say, there is too many different things I can go with that. Whether there is new people that came to the area, you know, a new bomb makers that came in, or if he shared information. I mean, that’s so speculative,” said team leader Matt Verkant.