Friday, June 6, 2014

The potential of Benedict Bergdahl

Take this article with a grain of salt, but Robert Spencer has a piece giving 5 reasons to believe Bowe Bergdahl is not just guilty of being AWOL (Absent Without Leave) or desertion but of treason. To me, the most damning is actually Number Five:
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.
Forget rumors of his statements and whatnot. This is not rumor, but quantifiable evidence from his colleagues as to how how enemy tactics changed after Bergdahl ended up with the Taliban.

And by rumors, I am talking about the alleged letter that Bergdahl left behind:
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.”
That letter has been reported in multiple media outlets. But now, it seems, there is serious question as to the existence of the note:
Three days ago, the New York Times cited a “former senior military officer” for the claim that Bergdahl had left a note behind in his tent the night he disappeared saying “he had become disillusioned with the Army, did not support the American mission in Afghanistan and was leaving to start a new life.” Pretty strong evidence of desertion; in fact, it’s the only hard evidence of Bergdahl’s motives that allegedly exists. The same day, Fox News reported that two unnamed former members of Bergdahl’s unit also claim that he left a note, and that the note suggested not only desertion but an intent to renounce his citizenship. All of this came as a shock to Saxby Chambliss, the ranking GOP member on the Senate Intelligence Committee, who had read the classified file on Bergdahl and saw nothing in there about a note.

That’s when things started to get weird.
Chambliss later said he was told that the report of the existence of the note was wrong.
The military’s classified 35-page report on Bergdahl’s disappearance also says nothing about a note. [...]
Did the letter mysteriously disappear or did it never exist at all?
A cautionary tale that reports gathered in wartime can have errors and omissions, not always or even usually intentional.

But the evidence of Benedict Bergdahl so far seems persuasive.

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