One of the most controversial court cases at this time seems to have come to an end on Friday. A military court sentenced Bowe Bergdahl to a demotion from sergeant to private, fined him $1,000 a month for the next 10 months, and dishonorably discharged him. Bergdahl had deserted his post in Afghanistan in 2009 and was captured by the Taliban. He would spend the next five years in captivity until he was exchanged for five detainees held at Guantanamo Bay in May of 2014. This sentence has angered many, due to the fact that he deserted, and some in the search party that went looking for him were wounded. The question is, though: Did Bowe Bergdahl’s punishment fit his crimes?
Those who feel he should have gone to jail for his crimes see his sentence as insulting to the soldiers who risked their lives to try and find him. They feel that while he did suffer those five years while he was in the hands of the Taliban, he brought it on himself, for no one made him desert. Plus, in the eyes of many, he is not just a deserter, he is a traitor and should face the worst punishment we can give him. They see his sentence as one more disgrace in the case of this disgraced solider.
People who feel justice was served in this case argue he has suffered enough. They feel his years in captivity and the things he endured have been punishment enough. They also feel that he was a young man who made a horrible mistake and he has the rest of his life to atone for what he did. Finally, this was a decision rendered in a military court and it is not our place to question it.
Bowe Bergdahl has been through hell since 2009. He has been captured, beaten, and tortured for his desertion and must face the scorn of his fellow Americans. He will spend the rest of his life being seen as a modern day Benedict Arnold and he will have to live with that. Is that punishment enough? Only he will ever know.
Fox News covering the sentencing of Bowe Bergdahl:
Did the sentence Bowe Bergdahl received fit his crimes? Was this a slap on the wrist to a man who should spend the rest of his life in a jail cell? Or, is this a man who has suffered enough and he should be a free man?
Bowe Bergdahl should have gone to jail
Those who feel he should have gone to jail say he is a traitor and should be treated accordingly. He endangered the lives of his fellow soldiers who went out looking for him.
This sentence is dishonorable! And a insult to all military personnel.
— Paul Dawson (@jemma589) November 3, 2017
He wouldn’t have been captured if HE hadn’t walked off! That was of HIS own doing!! He owes time for the damage HE caused to OTHERS!!!
— c. anderson (@canderson93) November 3, 2017
He deserted his post in the face of the enemy. The UCMJ has a very strict penalty for that and its not being applied.
— Michael Price (@MPRadamacue) November 3, 2017
He walked off on his own free will. He is a traitor and should be held accountable!
— JRodgers (@67Leigh) November 3, 2017
Bowe Bergdahl’s sentence was just
People who think the sentence was just say that he spent five years in captivity where he suffered horribly at the hands of the Taliban. This is a man who suffered enough and he should be allowed to move on with his life.
Good. This guy was tortured for 6 years. Give him a dishonorable discharge and move on.
— WandaSpeaks67 (@WandaSpeaks67) November 3, 2017
He is young and dumb. He has the next 70 years to make up for what he did. Now lets see if he does it. #makeitworthit
— Hilljack (@H1lljack) November 3, 2017
Hey, respect law enforcement/military's decision. If you disagree, you're ungrateful.
— Abu Amirah (@Abu_AmirahATL) November 3, 2017
He spent enough time being captured. As a veteran I am proud of the military justice system.
— Wes (@WMSchoenhofer) November 3, 2017
Do you think the punishment fit the crime?