There has certainly been a lot of controversy surrounding President Barack Obama's decision to exchange five Taliban leaders from Guantanamo for Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl. While some people are questioning how smart--and legal--of a move it was on Obama's behalf to strike such a deal, others are concerned that the U.S. turned over the prisoners for a deserter and Taliban sympathizer. U.S. officials have released new information about Bergdahl's captivity that may make some more sympathetic to the 28-year-old, as Bergdahl claims he was tortured and kept in a cage at times after trying to escape.
Bowe Bergdahl is still being treated at a hospital in Germany and is showing signs of improvement. While Bergdahl isn't yet ready to return to the U.S. and be questioned on some of the details surrounding his leaving base, he has divulged some information about his confinement. Not only does Bergdahl maintain that he was tortured, he also says that he was kept in a shark cage for extended periods of time.
“He’s said that they kept him in a shark cage in total darkness for weeks, possibly months,” one U.S. official said. Bergdahl was confined in the cage on at least two occasions after attempting to escape.
— BBC News US (@BBCNewsUS) June 2, 2014
While the news of Bowe Bergdahl's torture and confinement in a shark cage may make some people more sympathetic to the young man, many remain skeptical.
“I think there are going to be a lot of things that Bergdahl tells the Army and the medical folks that he’s talking to now that is going to be very difficult to validate,” said Senator Saxby Chambliss. “That’s not to say they’re not absolutely true, but we weren’t there. We have nobody who was on the inside. So we don’t know exactly what happened in his life over the last several years, except we do know he was captured and he’s been in the Taliban’s hands.”
Considering some of the details surrounding Bergdahl's leaving his post and the fact that he was returned from five years in captivity with relatively minor health issues, it's easy to see why some people are raising their eyebrows.
Bowe Bergdahl isn't the only Bergdahl under attack in the days following his release. His father Robert Bergdahl has also been criticized for some comments he made on Twitter (below) that make some believe he is a Taliban sympathizer as well. Bergdahl's parents have been receiving threats since their son's release, which the FBI is investigating.
— slone (@slone) June 2, 2014
— Anto de Chav (@antodechav) June 8, 2014
Image via YouTube