These emails were given to the author of a 2012 Rolling Stone article on the case by Bergdahl's own parents.
The overwrought soldier's father, Bob, emailed back: "OBEY YOUR CONSCIENCE!" And then, according to the Rolling Stone profile reporting these emails -- as well as the Army report on the incident -- Bergdahl "decided to walk away."
Bergdahl's unit commander, Evan Buetow, told CNN's Jake Tapper that intercepted Taliban "chatter" soon revealed that Bergdahl was looking for a member of the Taliban who spoke English. (Other than his father.)
Buetow said he couldn't prove it, but he believed Bergdahl began helping the Taliban attack his own unit. After that, Buetow says, the assaults were much more direct, and Bergdahl would have known the unit's tactics and how they would respond to an attack.
U.S. forces in the area spent the next two months on a single mission: trying to find Bergdahl. It is beyond dispute that any American killed during that time was killed on a mission to "rescue" Bergdahl from his new comrades.
Over the years, the Taliban produced several propaganda videos with Bergdahl -- eating, doing push-ups and criticizing American foreign policy.
During the Vietnam War, POW Navy Vice Admiral James Stockdale disfigured himself so that he could not be used in a propaganda video. He slit his wrists to avoid being tortured for information.
When captured Navy aviator Jeremiah Denton was forced by the North Vietnamese to make a propaganda video, he blinked the word T-O-R-T-U-R-E in Morse code, over and over again, as he said these words:
"I don't know what is going on in the war now. My only sources are North Vietnamese radio, magazines and newspapers. But whatever the position of my government, I agree with it. I support it. I will support it as long as I live."
It was the first confirmation the U.S. had that the North Vietnamese were torturing POWs.
These men -- and many more -- had limbs torn from their sockets, their legs and backs shattered by the North Vietnamese. As Denton said of the repeated torture, he'd rather lose an arm than his honor.
When right-wingers get choked up about "the troops," these are the sort of men we're thinking of. Not Bowe "America is disgusting" Bergdahl.
But to Obama, Bergdahl was the picture of American manhood and military honor.
He released five of the most dangerous terrorists in the world -- captured at great cost to our military -- in order to give Bergdahl an exit plan from his Great Adventure. (Before he ever set foot in Afghanistan, Bergdahl had told a fellow soldier, "If this deployment is lame, I'm just going to walk off into the mountains of Pakistan.")
Bergdahl wasn't being "left behind" or "left on the battlefield." He was being left where he wanted to be, with the poor, innocent Talibanists, far away from this "disgusting" country that made him "ashamed to be an American."
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