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Military Judge: Fines but No Jail for Deserter Bowe Bergdahl

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Re: Military Judge: Fines but No Jail for Deserter Bowe Bergdahl

Post  Admin on Fri 02 Nov 2018, 10:46 pm

Five Terrorists Exchanged for Bergdahl Now Working for Taliban Office in Qatar
By Sara Carter 
November 02, 2018 | 11:34 AM EDT
A Taliban spokesman revealed Tuesday that the five terrorist prisoners exchanged for Army deserter, Bowe Bergdahl have now joined a Taliban political office in Qatar.
AP reports:

“They will now be among Taliban representatives negotiating for peace in Afghanistan, a sign some negotiators in Kabul say indicates the Taliban’s desire for a peace pact. Others fear the five, all of whom were close to the insurgent group’s founder and hard-line leader Mullah Mohammed Omar, bring with them the same ultra-conservative interpretation of Islam that characterized the group’s five-year rule that ended in 2001 with the U.S.-led invasion.”

The five terrorists were freed to Qatar by the Obama Administration in 2014, after the U.S. government negotiated the release of Bergdahl, who had wandered from his outpost in Afghanistan on June 30, 2009.  In October of 2017, the former Army Sergeant pled guilty to desertion and misbehavior before the enemy and received a dishonorable discharge.

According to a U.S. government official in a 2015 Fox News report,  least three of the five terrorists–known as the “Taliban Five”–tried to “re-engage” in terrorist activity.
Haroun Mir, a political analyst in Kabul, Afghanistan, told AP, “The Taliban are bringing back their old generation, which means the Taliban have not changed their thinking or their leadership. What we are more worried about is if tomorrow the Taliban say ‘we are ready to negotiate,’ who will represent Kabul? That is the big challenge because the government is so divided, not just ideologically but on ethnic lines.”
Who are the “Taliban Five?”

Mohammad Fazl: Former deputy defense minister, chief of staff and commander for Taliban army. A 2008 U.S. military detainee assessment on Fazl states, “Detainee is wanted by the U.N. for possible war crimes including the murder of thousands of Shiites. Detainee was associated with terrorist groups currently opposing U.S. and coalition forces. If released, detainee would likely rejoin the Taliban and establish ties with … elements participating in hostilities against U.S. and coalition forces in Afghanistan.”
Abdul Haq Wasiq: Former Taliban deputy minister of intelligence. Military records note that Wasiq, “was central to the Taliban’s efforts to form alliances with other Islamic fundamentalist groups to fight alongside the Taliban against U.S. and coalition forces after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks. Detainee utilized his office to support al-Qaida and to assist Taliban personnel elude capture. Detainee arranged for al-Qaida personnel to train Taliban intelligence staff.”
Mullah Norullah Nori: A former Taliban commander accused by the U.N. of ordering the slaughter of thousands of Shiites.  A 2008 military assessment of Nori notes, “Detainee continues to be a significant figure encouraging acts of aggression and his brother is currently a Taliban commander conducting operations against U.S. and coalition forces.”
Khairullah Khairkhwa: Former Taliban interior minister and commander. According to U.S. military documents, Khairkhwa had direct ties to Taliban chief Mullah Omar and Osama bin Laden.
Mohammed Nabi: Chief of security for the Taliban in Qalat, Afghanistan. U.S. documents claim he later worked as a radio operator for the Taliban’s communications office in Kabul.

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Military Judge: Fines but No Jail for Deserter Bowe Bergdahl

Post  Admin on Sun 13 Dec 2015, 11:51 pm

Military Judge: Fines but No Jail for Deserter Bowe Bergdahl
FILE- In this Sept. 27, 2017, file photo, Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl leaves a motions hearing during a lunch break in Fort Bragg, N.C. Bergdahl is expected to plead guilty on Monday, Oct. 16, to charges that he endangered comrades by walking away from a remote post in Afghanistan in 2009. The U.S. Army said Bergdahl asked to enter his plea before the military judge at Fort Bragg. (Andrew Craft/The Fayetteville Observer via AP, File)Andrew Craft/The Fayetteville Observer via AP
by PENNY STARR3 Nov 20172,770
Bowe Bergdahl will not serve more time behind bars, a military judge has decided eight years after he deserted his platoon in Afghanistan.
His desertion, to which he pleaded guilty, and the subsequent search for him that led to the deaths of six soldiers did not result in the 14-year sentence prosecutors requested in the case.

The judge also ruled that Bergdahl be dishonorably discharged, that his rank be reduced from sergeant to private, and that he be required to pay a $1,000 fine from his salary for the next ten months, CNN reported.

“As everyone knows, he was a captive of the Taliban for nearly five years, and three more years have elapsed while the legal process unfolded,” Eugene Fidell, Bergdahl’s civilian attorney, said at a press conference after the sentence was handed down. “He has lost nearly a decade of his life.”

But in emotional testimony about the course of the trial, others continue to suffer as a result of Bergdahl’s decision in 2009.

One witness, Capt. John Billings, Bergdahl’s platoon leader, said the platoon searched for the then-private first class for 19 days, going without food or water, according to CNN.

Retired Navy SEAL Chief Petty Officer James Hatch testified that he and his dog came under fire while looking for Bergdahl. He was shot in the leg, and his K-9 partner, Remco, was shot in the face and killed, CNN reported.

“I thought I was dead,” said Hatch, who now walks with a heavy limp after enduring 18 surgeries.

Dr. Charles Morgan, a forensic psychiatrist and professor at the University of New Haven and Yale University, testified that Bergdahl suffered from numerous mental illnesses, including schizotypal personality disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder.

Capt. Nina Banks, a defense attorney, said that “Sgt. Bergdahl has been punished enough.”

“Sgt. Bergdahl paid a bitter price for the choices that he made,” she said.

President Donald Trump was not pleased with the outcome of the trial.

“The decision on Sergeant Bergdahl is a complete and total disgrace to our Country and to our Military,” Trump tweeted on Friday:
Donald J. Trump ✔️@realDonaldTrump
The decision on Sergeant Bergdahl is a complete and total disgrace to our Country and to our Military.
4:54 PM - Nov 3, 2017
40,216 40,216 Replies 32,248 32,248 Retweets 114,011 114,011 likes
Twitter Ads info and privacy
Bergdahl returned to the United States after President Barack Obama traded five detainees held at Guantánamo Bay in exchange for his release from the Taliban in 2014, Fox reported. By the next year, a House Armed Services Committee report revealed that the “Taliban Five” had returned to “threatening activities” upon their release to Qatar, where the Taliban run a “political office.”
In February, Bergdahl’s defense team claimed he could not have a fair trial because of comments Trump made about Bergdahl on the 2016 campaign trail.

Congressional Report Says Obama Violated the Law With Bergdahl Swap, White House Still Stands by Decision
Remember that time when President Obama traded five dangerous terrorists for a guy who turned out to be a traitor?
Oh and allowed his Dad to Praise Allah in the Rose Garden speech of the Whitehouse. 

Remember that time when President Obama traded five dangerous terrorists for a guy who turned out to be a traitor?
You know, the Bowe Bergdahl deal?
Well a new Congressional report has determined the president’s administration broke the law by releasing the Taliban prisoners, yet the White House is standing by their decision.
Yes, they are standing by their decision to violate the law. Wow. That speaks volumes about this administration’s lack of moral character, doesn’t it?
From TheBlaze:
The report was released Thursday by the House Armed Services Committee and says that the administration should have notified Congress in a timely manner. The finding is similar to that of an earlier nonpartisan Government Accountability Office investigation last year.
Nevertheless, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said the administration “absolutely” stands by its decision.
“The president believes strongly in the principle of ensuring that anybody who puts on the military uniform of the United States is not somebody who is going to be left behind by the commander-in-chief,” Earnest said. “There was a unique opportunity that was presented to safely recover Sgt. Bergdahl and that’s exactly what we did.”
“Our report finds that the Administration clearly broke the law in not notifying Congress of the transfer,” said Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-Texas), chairman of the House Armed Services Committee. “Pentagon officials best positioned to assess the national security risks were left out of the process, which increases the chances of dangerous consequences from the transfer. It is irresponsible to put these terrorists that much closer to the battlefield to settle a campaign promise and unconscionable to mislead Congress in the process.
Yeah, I’m not a genius, or a morally perfect person by any stretch of the imagination, but I’m almost positive it’s a bad thing to not feel guilty for doing something wrong.

I believe that’s called a seared conscience.
When you have folks running the show who have a faulty conscience that no longer cares about doing the right thing, you’re in big, big trouble.
Let’s hope the nation survives until we can put someone else in the White House who has a bit more integrity.

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