December 15, 2015
Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl has been the subject of much scrutiny and media attention since the U.S. traded five Taliban detainees in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to secure his release after he was captured in 2009 when he left his outpost in Afghanistan. Bergdahl spent almost five years under Taliban activity before his release was secured.
The move by the U.S. drew criticism for trading known terrorists for a deserter, especially after several Army troops died searching for him in the days after his disappearance. Still, upon his return to the U.S., recommendations were made by Army lawyers at a preliminary hearing in Texas in September that he should not face jail time or punitive discharge resulting from a court-martial.
However, on Monday, Gen. Robert B. Abrams, head of the Army Forces Command at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, ordered Bergdahl to face a court-martial on charges of desertion and endangering troops stemming from his actions.
Richard Rosen, a Glenn D. West Endowed Professor of Law and the Director for the Center for Military Law and Policy at Texas Tech University’s School of Law, is available to comment on the latest developments. Rosen is widely known for his expertise in military law and has been a contributor to the recent edition of the Serial podcast, which is focusing on the Bergdahl story.
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