U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl pleaded guilty this week to “desertion and misbehavior before the enemy.” He faces life in prison for the charge of misbehavior before the enemy, with his sentencing hearing set for Oct. 23.
Bergdahl was captured by the Taliban soon after he left his post in Afghanistan in 2009. After being held prisoner and tortured for nearly five years, he was exchanged for five Taliban leaders who were detainees at Guantanamo Bay. The Obama administration was criticized at the time for trading five members of the Taliban for a soldier believed to be a deserter.
What’s the full extent of the damage?
By his own admission, Bergdahl deserted his post and put his fellow soldiers in danger as they searched for him.
His desertion is believed to have been a major factor in the deaths of six men who were reportedly looking for him or whose movements for the mission were changed because the platoon was still searching for Bergdahl.
Here are their names:
- Staff Sgt. Clayton Bowen
- Morris Walker
- Staff Sgt. Kurt Curtiss
- 2nd Lt. Darryn Andrews
- Matthew Michael Martinek
- Staff Sgt. Michael Murphrey
“He betrayed the trust of his brothers in arms, and they died because of it,” Glenn said. “If I can give him credit for anything, it’s that he’s owning his actions and accepting his own guilt.”