A military judge on Nov. 3 ruled that Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl will receive a dishonorable discharge and a reduction in rank to private but will not face prison time for deserting his post in Afghanistan in June 2009, the Associated Press reports.
Bergdahl, who was held captive for five years by the Taliban — during which time he says he was tortured and beaten — after abandoning his unit’s outpost near the town of Yahya Kheyl in Afghanistan’s Paktika province, plead guilty on Oct. 17 to the charges of desertion and misbehavior before the enemy.
Bergdahl was released from Taliban captivity in May 2014 after a controversial prisoner exchange involving five Guantanamo Bay detainees. Bergdahl opted to be tried by a military judge instead of a jury, CNN reports.
Initially faced with the possibility of life in prison, the prosecution asked the presiding judge, Army Col. Jeffery R. Nance, for a 14-year sentence and a dishonorable discharge, CNN reports.
Bergdahl will lose all veterans benefits and will be required to pay a fine of $1,000 a month for 10 months, according to The Washington Post.
Bergdahl’s defense attested that the soldier “probably should not have been in the Army," Capt. Nina Banks, a military attorney for Bergdahl said in her closing argument.
The prosecution argued that Bergdahl was aware of the risks when he deserted and that his decision to walk off post placed Army personnel sent to search for him in danger.
Soldiers tasked with searching for Bergdahl were called upon to testify during the proceedings, and one of the witnesses, retired Navy SEAL James Hatch testified that he and his military working dog came under fire while searching for Bergdahl, CNN reports. Hatch was shot in the leg, and his working dog was shot and killed.
Benjamin Franklin nailed it when he said, "Fatigue is the best pillow." True story, Benny. There's nothing like pushing your body so far past exhaustion that you'd willingly, even longingly, take a nap on a concrete slab.
Former President George W. Bush is calling for an end to the partial government shutdown, which is about to hit the one-month mark and is currently the longest shutdown in US history.
In an appeal made on Instagram, the 43rd president called on "leaders on both sides to put politics aside, come together, and end this shutdown." The caption was posted with an image of him and former First Lady Laura Bush giving pizza to their Secret Service detail.
Staff Sgt. Daniel Christopher Evans was arrested on Jan. 29, 2018. (Photo courtesy of Wilmington Police Department, North Carolina.)
A special operations Marine is due in court on March 7 after being arrested last year for allegedly assaulting his girlfriend, Task & Purpose has learned.
Staff Sgt. Daniel Christopher Evans was arrested and charged with assault inflicting serious injury on July 29, 2018, according to Jennifer Dandron, a spokeswoman for police in Wilmington, North Carolina. Evans is currently assigned as a Critical Skills Operator with the 2nd Marine Raider Battalion at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, according to the Marine Corps Personnel Locator.
U.S. Army 1st Lt. Elyse Ping Medvigy conducts a call-for-fire during an artillery shoot south of Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan, Aug. 22, 2014. Medvigy, a fire support officer assigned to the 4th Infantry Division's Company D, 1st Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, is the first female company fire support officer to serve in an infantry brigade combat team supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Whitney Houston (Photo by U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Whitney Houston)
Following Trump's inauguration, some supporters of ground combat integration assumed he would quickly move to reinstate a ban on women in jobs like the infantry. When this did not happen, advocates breathed a collective sigh of relief, and hundreds of qualified women charted a course in history by entering the newly opened occupational fields.
So earlier this week when the Wall Street Journal published an editorial against women in ground combat by conservative political commentator Heather Mac Donald, the inclination of many ground combat integration supporters was to dismiss it outright. But given Trump's proclivity to make knee jerk policy decisions in response to falling approval ratings and the court's tradition of deference to the military when it comes to policies affecting good order and discipline, it would be unwise to assume the 2016 lifting of the ban on women in ground combat is a done deal.
R. Lee Ermey was laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery on Friday.
Best known for his iconic role as the Marine Corps drill instructor Gunnery Sgt. Hartman in the war drama Full Metal Jacket, Ermey died April 15, 2018 at age 74 due to complications from pneumonia, Task & Purpose previously reported.