1. DUTY?

    Pentagon Official: Bergdahl Walked Away

    Undated image from video footage taken from a Taliban-affiliated website shows a man who says he is Private First Class Bowe R. Bergdahl, a U.S. soldier captured by the Taliban in southeastern Afghanistan in late June. The Afghan Taliban said on December 25, 2009 that they had issued a new video tape of Bergdahl and added that in it he asks his government to take part in a prisoner exchange deal. REUTERS via Reuters TV (CONFLICT CIVIL UNREST) FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - RTR28CBI

    Reuters

    Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl walked away from his unit before being captured by Taliban associates, a Pentagon investigation found in 2010, according to a senior defense official. Bergdahl was freed this weekend after the U.S. agreed to trade five Taliban prisoners held at Guantanamo Bay for his release. The official said it's "incontrovertible" that Bergdahl walked away, and though the military initiated an early frenzied rescue effort, it apparently later decided not to make a more dramatic attempt. As first reported by The Daily Beast, an officer who served with Bergdahl in his unit dispelled rumors that Bergdahl was on patrol that night, saying he "fled the outpost on foot. He deserted." The White House defended its decision Monday, saying, "It was the right thing to do. We in the United States do not leave our men and women behind during an armed conflict." They also said that the released Taliban fighters “do not, and will not, pose a significant threat.”

    Read it at The Miami Herald