Earlier this week the U.S. Army officially announced desertion charges for Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, who was traded by the Obama administration for five Taliban commanders last summer after five years in captivity. Shortly after the prisoner swap, which was celebrated by President Obama with a White House Rose Garden ceremony, Bergdahl's platoon mates started to publicly come forward with desertion allegations. They were quickly dismissed and smeared by the administration. Now, they're speaking out about the new charges.
"The truth has been out there the entire time. We've been telling everybody that wants to listen what the truth is from shortly after Bergdahl disappeared to the initial Army investigation to when he was traded back last year. Everybody that was around him, knew what the truth was and it's just a relief that the United States Army did the right thing in charging Bergdahl with desertion and misconduct," former Army medic Josh Cornelison, who served in Bergdahl's platoon, said last night on The Kelly File.
"If they would have brought him back, and we had an American soldier back and they had released a statement or a memo saying, 'Hey we got him back, there's some circumstances that are surrounding him, we're going to investigate them,' that would have been great. We got him back and we're going to seek justice, but instead they parade his parents out in a Rose Garden ceremony and you have cabinet members come out and say he served with honor and distinction, basically calling him a hero, when they knew that wasn't true. The facts have been the same for five years, but yet you have solders that are missing limbs or paid the ultimate price over there and they don't get a Rose Garden ceremony. They served honorably," Army Specialist Cody Full, who also served in Bergdahl's platoon, added.
Army Team Leader Evan Buetow said charges represent a step toward closure.
"We came forward to let people know what really happened," Buetow said.
Yesterday State Department spokeswoman and incoming White House Communications advisor Jen Psaki doubled down on the Obama administration's decision to trade Bergdahl for the enemy, saying it was "absolutely worth it."
Under the Uniformed Code of Military Justice, a preliminary Article 32 hearing has been scheduled for Bergdahl and will be held at Ft. Sam Houston, Texas. When the hearing will take place will be announced at a later date. Bergdahl faces up to life in prison for his actions if convicted.