Did cost of recovering Idaho POW include the life of Utah soldier?

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  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    June 7, 2014 6:48 p.m.

    Rough crowd from the Tea-Publicans --

    IF there is a court martial,
    IF Bowe is found guilty...

    From the Uniform Code of Military Justice --
    Articles 85 and 86 state:

    "Maximum punishment.

    (1) Completed or attempted desertion with intent to avoid hazardous duty or to shirk important service. Dishonorable discharge, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and confinement for 5 years.

    (2) Other cases of completed or attempted desertion.

    (a) Terminated by apprehension. Dishonorable discharge, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and confinement for 3 years.

    (b) Terminated otherwise. Dishonorable discharge, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and confinement for 2 years.

    He was a POW for 5 years for crying out-loud.

    I remember Vietnam POWs who had their U.S. Court Martials sentences exonerated because their offense was less than the time they had already spent in the Hanoi Hilton.

    So even if he IS guilty --
    He's already paid for it, and then some.

  • wrz Phoenix, AZ
    June 4, 2014 9:21 p.m.

    "Besides being illegal by not giving Congress the required 30 day notice, this action of giving back to the Taliban their top 5 highest ranking officials held in prison by the USA will, undoubtedly rejuvenate the Taliban."

    The Department of Defense will soon conduct inquiries into his conduct. It may well be shown that his conduct reveals he's a sympathizer.

    "This soldier has paid a price for his actions and will likely be paying for it for the rest of his life."

    I agree with others of his military platoon that he should be Court-Martialed for desertion and alleged fraternizing with the enemy. Especially when several soldier buddies reportedly died looking for him. He'll be lucky if he is not punished in some form for his conduct.

  • Eliyahu Pleasant Grove, UT
    June 4, 2014 9:00 a.m.

    Let's be honest here. No matter what Obama did regarding the prisoner, he would be criticized. Same thing with Gitmo and its prisoners. We don't want it to remain open and we don't want it closed. We don't want the prisoners held forever without trial, we don't want them tried, and we don't want them released. It's long past time to act, and the course that Obama took seems to be the least worse of the multitude of bad options available to him. Sometimes there are no good options.

  • mrjj69 bountiful, UT
    June 3, 2014 10:19 p.m.

    this sets a very bad precedent. hostages should not be traded for terrorists.

  • K Mchenry, IL
    June 3, 2014 9:11 p.m.

    If he was a deserter he would have been used by the enemy and not treated poorly. He was treated poorly. He is now safe. That is cause for celebration.

    You think maybe this talk of his getting captured in the first place being his own fault is to save face at the top, and not because it's actually true?

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    June 3, 2014 7:06 p.m.

    Hey Kiddsport -

    I agree, we do NOT negotiate with terrorists.

    Who says the Taliban were acting as terrorists? They were straight up enemy combatants at the time of the capture, not terrorists,

    Check out Time Magazine's article on the subject:

    "The difference with Bergdahl, as Obama argues, is that he wasn’t really a hostage grabbed by terrorists. He pretty neatly fit the classic definition of a prisoner of war. He had just left a military outpost in an obvious war zone while (presumably) wearing his uniform. History is loaded with examples of nations—including America—making deals to free their soldiers."

    Just because Rush Limbaugh and his 20 million dittoheads say something, it doesn't make it true.

    "Conservative" land has it's facts all convoluted again, but there is nothing unusual about that, is there?

  • EnglishAlan Rugeley, Staffs
    June 3, 2014 5:32 p.m.

    Dan76, Yes. I didn't enjoy it. There were times where I can fully understand why people make wrong choices, just to get away from it. We know nothing about this young man's state of mind at the time, or even if he deliberately walked away. I agree with you that we should reserve judgement.

  • idablu Idaho Falls, ID
    June 3, 2014 5:14 p.m.

    Fox News and DN aren't the only news outlets talking desertion. Even the Liberal flagship MSNBC and CNN have raised serious questions about what Bergdahl was doing and suggested the "D"-word. It is much more than rumor. There is very strong evidence to support the assertion.

    Wonder--"I guess if you're in the military you shouldn't vote for a Republican. Apparently most of them think it's best to leave prisoners of war behind when troops pull out."

    I have several friends who have served in the Middle East. 100% strongly disagree with this decision. And if you polled all the servicemen and women, you would find overwhelming disagreement with Obama's little trade. So, Wonder, you are definitely barking up the wrong tree if you are looking for support among the military servicemen for your views on this matter.

    DN- the Headline of this article makes it appear as if it is a Utah vs Idaho thing. What's up with that?

  • Ryan J Bozeman, MT
    June 3, 2014 3:20 p.m.

    I refuse to believe that this soldier was a deserter until there is real evidence. Not just the DN spewing the controversial ideas of other news media. This is ridiculous. What if he is not a deserter? Just having the rumor out there could ruin this man's life, and just as this article is saying make the deaths of other men and women meaningless. Good job American media (sarcasm). Our military men and women understand that a life has value and sacrifice their everything to save us from those that would harm us. Shame on us for propagating rumors without having real evidence. I wish the news media showed a little backbone every now and again and would refuse to publish stories without hard evidence. If he is a deserter, wait until the court martial. Again, if he is not, we are all responsible for turning his return from a joyous occasion into a cesspool of political propaganda.

  • dan76 san antonio, TX
    June 3, 2014 3:10 p.m.

    ""TRUTH," It is easy to sit comfortably at home in Salt Lake City, and say such things about this young man. Have you ever been in combat? Have you ever been in constant fear of your life, and the lives of those that you serve with?" -EnglishAllen

    Yes I have. Have you?

    However I reserve judgement on this soldier until the facts are in. But let us not forget how the "facts" were distorted in Pat Tillman's death.

  • Mr. Bean Phoenix, AZ
    June 3, 2014 2:46 p.m.

    I don't' know why people are so upset with what Obama did. He told everyone up front that he will close Gitmo... and that he will make friends with the Taliban and Al Qaeda. He's just being true to his word. Remember, he only has three more years to get the job done.

    You folks out there that voted this guy into office... I hope you're satisfied now.

  • Kings Court Alpine, UT
    June 3, 2014 2:35 p.m.

    There are few weird things on this forum that ought to be addressed. First of all, the five released detainees are not terrorists, but enemy POW's. The Taliban was the legitimate government of Afghanistan when we went to war with them. Prisoner exchanges have happened in every war the U.S. has been a part of. Secondly, a lot of conjecture (most of it is political) about the status of the Sergeant. Was he deserter or not? Well, if was a deserter, where was he going? He just walked away into enemy territory, and we call it desertion? Historically, when you look at desertions, there is usually a safe haven close by--usually home or friendly territory to run to. Geographically speaking, I don't see that safe have anywhere in or near Afghanistan. That doesn't mean he wasn't deserting, but the futility of that desertion would lead to me suspect that he was a Section 8. We are leaving Afghanistan next year, and at least our military leaders have the integrity to not leave a surviving soldier behind, deserter or not. That takes some courage in today's vicious and unforgiving political climate.

  • Dan Maloy Enid, OK
    June 3, 2014 2:03 p.m.

    @ UT Brit - London, England "@Dan Maloy - Might want to crack open a book on US history Dan, prepare yourself you are in for a shock."

    Get specific, UT Brit.

    Negotiating with terrorists only emboldens them, period. It's a tough line to hold (i.e., not negotiating with terrorists) but if they had possession of an America soldier or citizen and realized that the Unites States did nothing to "negotiate" with the enemy for the return of our fellow American, they soon realize it and don't bother trying to take prisoners. Now, we may not "negotiate" with them, but that doesn't mean I'm against trying to take them by strategy or even brute force/violence/killing the enemy (as long as the one(s) we are trying to free didn't simply desert.....that's a different issue).

    But "negotiate"?


    My "negotiation" of a "legitmate" prisoner is...."Turn them over immediately or be killed".


    But, as I said, UT Brit, you said I'm in for a surprise, so please A) get specific with "history" and B) argue your side about how negotiating is wise.


  • UT Brit London, England
    June 3, 2014 1:46 p.m.

    Dan Maloy

    Might want to crack open a book on US history Dan, prepare yourself you are in for a shock.

  • Dan Maloy Enid, OK
    June 3, 2014 1:46 p.m.

    You "never" leave a soldier behind?

    What if that soldier obviously didn't want to go home? What if he wanted to be left behind and communicated that by simply walking away into the hands of his enemy?

    If that is the case I feel ZERO responsibility to risk either my life or the lives of my fellow servicemen to rescue someone in that situation.

    Major Dan Maloy, USAF

  • Dan Maloy Enid, OK
    June 3, 2014 1:41 p.m.

    I thought we didn't negotiate with terrorists?

    With our current Commander in Chief, so much for that one....

  • Schnee Salt Lake City, UT
    June 3, 2014 1:05 p.m.

    "How about our Marine prisoner in Mexico?"

    He broke a law. That's his fault.

  • kiddsport Fairview, UT
    June 3, 2014 12:01 p.m.

    GaryO: I believe the statement you are searching for is, "We do NOT negotiate with terrorists!"

  • kiddsport Fairview, UT
    June 3, 2014 12:00 p.m.

    This Obama administration reminds me of the Dr. Seuss story of the Cat in the Hat who, in attempting to cover up a mess, makes an even bigger and bigger mess until he has completely bolloxed the whole countryside. It only finally gets cleaned up with some kind of cataclysmic device of some sort if memory serves. It's a scary thought.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    June 3, 2014 11:55 a.m.

    Used by the Taliban for propaganda purposes...
    Used by Fox News for propaganda purposes...

    I see no difference,
    IMHO, they both undermining this country.

    Fow News is doing Al Queda a huge favor with this one....

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    June 3, 2014 11:51 a.m.

    Oh I get it now...,

    If you ever do anything that makes Pres. Obama look the least bit good, enven by happen stance -- YOU are the enemy!

    Sad, the minds of these partisan, political, FauxNews, radical right-wing.

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    June 3, 2014 11:47 a.m.

    “ . . . this fellow was no prisoner of war, but went AWOL and is a taliban sympathize . . . “

    The guy is half-starved, sick, can’t walk, and might die. If this is how the Taliban treats their friends, can you imagine how they’d treat someone they didn’t like?

    I don’t think many Americans will take their vacations in Taliban Country Afghanistan.

    Obama did the right thing. He recovered the only know American POW in Afghanistan, and that is appropriate for the Commander in Chief to do if he has the opportunity.

    How's that motto go?

    "No man left behind!"

    . . . OR does it say, "Leave guys behind if it's too inconvenient to rescue them?"

    Or is only wrong when Obama rescues a soldier?

  • IDC Boise, ID
    June 3, 2014 11:32 a.m.

    You can criticize either way. In the end the thing that I find most troubling is negotiating with terrorists. Only time will tell but I think this puts all soldiers and citizens of the US in a dangerous position.

    If he was truly a deserter, he created his own problem. If soldiers don't want to serve, there are ways for them to be discharged.

  • sg newhall, CA
    June 3, 2014 11:08 a.m.

    Obama lied about consulting Congress regarding the 5 Taliban released. He never did. As usual, Obama did what he wanted to do without Congressional input. This affair is another reason why Obama should be impeached and thrown out of office. He is a domestic enemy.

  • davidroy Flagstaff, AZ
    June 3, 2014 11:06 a.m.

    Some have mentioned that those in here that are commenting about his status as a deserter are just assuming that based on rumors. Well the "rumors" are coming from those that he served with and served under. What would be their motive for saying such things? Wouldn't they be happy to see a member they served with released and on his way home? There is evidence that he called his base the day after he "disappeared" and said he left the base without authorization, i.e., deserted. He also left a note stating his disillusionment with the U.S. There are emails to his parents that express his dislike of America. It does not look good for him. Obviously there are many questions to be asked and he deserves his day in court. Hopefully this will not be dragged out and he will be judged based on the evidence. I can't help but wonder...we can get this soldier freed at a very high cost but for some reason we can't get the young Marine out of jail in Mexico. Strange.

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    June 3, 2014 11:01 a.m.

    Recently, Obama released tens of thousands rapists, murderers, and thieves from prison.

    Then he releases these five terrorists involved with killing thousands of Americans at the twin towers.

    Does this make him a traitor?

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    June 3, 2014 10:54 a.m.

    Amazing how many people support what Obama just did.

    What about the tens of thousands rapists, murderers, and thieves he just released from prison?

    How about our Marine prisoner in Mexico?

  • gmlewis Houston, TX
    June 3, 2014 10:49 a.m.

    If he was AWOL, he may well have intended to return to his unit. Sometimes there are enticements in villages tha a young soldier can fall prey to. If he is found guilty, I hope that "time served" as a captive will go toward his punishment.

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    June 3, 2014 10:49 a.m.

    There's an old saying:

    "America! Love it or leave it".

    Bergdahl made the decision to leave. He made the choice, and it cost the lives of six others!

    Freeing five terrorist was a pathetic decision.

  • Joan Watson TWIN FALLS, ID
    June 3, 2014 10:45 a.m.

    For those who are always drum beating against the news reported in Deseret News, perhaps they should read what other news agencies are reporting concerning the exchange of a military deserter for 5 captured top of the line terrorists and the breaking of the law by President Obama. In comparison Deseret News is a tamed lion.
    Simple solution: if so offended, stop reading Deseret News. After all - its a choice.

  • TRUTH Salt Lake City, UT
    June 3, 2014 10:41 a.m.

    Clinton let Osama bin laden go free......Obama let five Osama bin laden's go free.........let's pray we don't have five more 9-11's!

  • Unicorn 2000 Cottonwood Heights, UT
    June 3, 2014 10:35 a.m.

    It is truly sad that this situation is being touted as ammo for the GOP to continue their outward hatred and contempt towards our president. The rest of the world thinks we are a joke because we are at war with ourselves, well at least the GOP against President Obama. That is why we are seen as weak...our enemies see a house beyond divided. We do not leave our soldiers behind to be treated in the most inhuman circumstances imaginable after a war ends.We do not know all the details just yet and it is disgusting that rumors and opinions of other are being used to vilify a prisoner of war before he has a chance to tell his side of the story. We have become a country of witch hunters!

  • Wonder Provo, UT
    June 3, 2014 10:13 a.m.

    I guess if you're in the military you shouldn't vote for a Republican. Apparently most of them think it's best to leave prisoners of war behind when troops pull out.

  • pragmatistferlife salt lake city, utah
    June 3, 2014 9:35 a.m.

    " Capturing American military personnel to hold as bargaining chips has now been given incentive for the Taliban and other groups."

    I don't know if this is purposeful, done in ignorance, or what but this habit of the right of pretending that all of these horrible (their assessment) things started with Obama is ridiculous. There is virtually nothing this President has done that wasn't done by other Presidents previously.

    What's sad is that no matter how many facts are told it doesn't matter at all to the right, they just say what ever they feel, regardless of how wrong it is.

  • xert Santa Monica, CA
    June 3, 2014 9:34 a.m.

    For shame Des. News. In your haste to attach some scandal to this story you forgot to do what all decent Americans are doing today and that is, welcoming this young man home and thanking him for his service. I don't expect that you will post this comment because it probably hits a little to close to home and your publication doesn't like to be corrected. I just want you to know that your readers know. some of them love you for things like this. This reader is asking you to be better and will do what you have failed to. Welcome home, Sergent!

  • Craig Clark Boulder, CO
    June 3, 2014 9:08 a.m.

    Whether or not Bergdahl was a deserter is a peripheral issue. The Administration made a horrendous call in agreeing to this exchange. Capturing American military personnel to hold as bargaining chips has now been given incentive for the Taliban and other groups.

  • midvale guy MIDVALE, UT
    June 3, 2014 8:50 a.m.

    This whole thing is a question of honor. Unless he's ruled completely mentally incompetent (that will be the plea), he should be prosecuted to find out what the inside of the United States penitentiary looks like. Other people lost their lives because they had honor searching for a person who didn't. That's a true tragedy. There used to be a time we were all Americans instead of left-wing or right-wing at least when it came to our servicemen and overseas conflict. Sadly, there is a large sector of the public who do not love their country. If Pres. Obama is the commander-in-chief then this soldier directly disobeyed him. He may be welcoming them home now, but if he lets him off the hook that will prove how much of a leader he really is.

  • There You Go Again Saint George, UT
    June 3, 2014 8:40 a.m.

    I have no idea what really happened to this soldier.

    I was not an eye witness.

    Anyone else reading/commenting on this piece was an eye witness?

    Who knows.

    What I do know...

    Watching FOX NEWS do what they do best sheds minimal light on anything resembling the TRUTH.

    The wheels of justice grind ever so slowly...

    But they do grind.

    The military justice system will find out what happened.

    The soldier will be treated accordingly.

  • Rustymommy Clovis, NM
    June 3, 2014 8:30 a.m.

    Lives were lost looking for this guy? Our government gave up 5 Taliban terrorists for the pleasure of getting this guy back on US soil? In what way is this guy more deserving of government intervention than the people at Benghazi?

    I am not unhappy that a man was returned home. But I am very unhappy that terrorists were released to obtain him. I am very unhappy that this guy got more consideration for his life than government employees who were doing their jobs. I am more than unhappy with Obama's sense of who is worth saving and what cost is appropriate.

  • donn layton, UT
    June 3, 2014 8:25 a.m.

    RE: bullet56, “this man, deserter of hero, is an American who volunteered to risk his life for his service buddies”?

    Taliban claim captured U.S. solider has converted to Islam and is teaching its fighters bomb-making skills.

    A Taliban deputy district commander in Paktika, who called himself Haji Nadeem, told the newspaper that Bergdahl taught him how to dismantle a mobile phone and turn it into a remote control for a roadside bomb.Nadeem claimed he also received basic ambush training from the U.S. soldier.
    Afghan intelligence officials also believe that Bergdahl is 'cooperating with the Taliban' and is acting as adviser to fighters at a base in the tribal area of Pakistan.

  • Ultra Bob Cottonwood Heights, UT
    June 3, 2014 7:59 a.m.

    "Staff Sergeant Kurt Curtiss, 27, of Murray, Utah, died Aug. 26 in Paktika Province, Afghanistan. He was part of the 1st Battalion, 501st Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division and was killed as he helped evacuate a hospital under fire."

    Fox News Greta show interviewed a mother of one of the soldiers killed. The mother described the mission of the patrol, in which her son was killed, was to protect some voting and look for the missing marine as a secondary mission.

    Fox News and the business community seems to be willing to twist every thing from golf to Russia into a criticism of President Obama.

    When men are killed on a mission, only the men on that mission will be able to tell us if they were killed as a result of the primary mission or any secondary missions.

    I hope that we will receive the full truth before we condemn.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    June 3, 2014 7:56 a.m.

    Wow, the story under this headline is astoundingly speculative. The spin in the ongoing effort to undermine the President knows no bounds.

    In the end, would it have been worse had the Idaho soldier stayed with the Taliban, willingly or unwillingly, and he was used for propaganda purposes? He may have been a deserter, but the Army will sort it out and deal with it. But resolving this loose end was appropriate.

  • bullet56 Olympia, WA
    June 3, 2014 7:51 a.m.

    All the Obama haters who accuse his of setting a new precedent, would do well to remember the Arms for hostages deal that the Hero of the GOP tried to pull off in Iran-Contra. (Google that) Ollie North was even proud of what they did by trying to give Iran weapons. Secondly, the haters should remember that this man, deserter of hero, is an American who volunteered to risk his life for his service buddies, state, and Country. American does not leave any member behind no matter what. We can't hold people for their lifetime in Gitmo without charges or trials, even though most of the American population doesn't care, it is antithesis to what America stands for in the world. The being fact, and that we are closing that very long and expensive excursion into battle, ($584 billion dollars), just what would the GOP want to do if we had left the serviceman behind?

  • LittleStream Carson City, NV
    June 3, 2014 7:41 a.m.

    What a sad state this country is in! A soldier is freed and most of the comments are critical of our leader. We have lost site of what is important. We certainly don't have any business sending men to war until we know what we are asking them to die for! As I recall the POW's from Viet Nam were treated as disrespectfully as this young soldier is going to be. We need to get back to remembering that we are all human beings first, then we are all Americans next. I hope that the media will not participate in destroying this young man's life.

  • pragmatistferlife salt lake city, utah
    June 3, 2014 7:33 a.m.

    "Concerning this matter, I think the President's actions would have been criticized in either way."

    Now there's the truth. This President would be criticized from the right for choosing corn flakes over cheerios.

    What's an even trade for an Americans life? Are we worth one Afgany? Maybe we should get two.
    This isn't monopoly or some real estate transaction, it's war and first of all we don't ever, yes ever leave anyone behind when possible...period. Secondly the five Afghan soldiers are Taliban who's sole interest has been to control Afghanistan. Bad guys yes but local bad guys.
    They shot and killed us because we came in and shot and killed them..

    They didn't hang out with Al Qaeda, Al Qaeda hung out with them. We ran off Al Qaeda and still stayed there and shot and killed Taliban members re-creating another scene in a 500 year old saga that always ends the same, and this ending is no different.

    Bad war, bad ending.

  • Carl G Chicago, IL
    June 3, 2014 7:18 a.m.

    Well, he promised to close Gitmo.

    He never mentioned this is where he would put the prisoners.

  • t702 Las Vegas, NV
    June 3, 2014 7:11 a.m.

    What is it about Pres Obama that everything he does, looks good on the surface, but deep down is a total failure, incompetent...i.e. Obamacare, Bengahzi, Solyndra, Fast & Furious, POW trade, IRS scandal, etc

  • Texasmom6 Mont Belvieu, TX
    June 3, 2014 7:06 a.m.

    It would seem that this soldier should be subjected to the court marshal process, but I would be very surprised if the Obama administration allows it. He is their poster boy for the diplomatic process and will most likely be lauded as a military hero.

  • ElmoBaggins Escalante, UT
    June 3, 2014 6:54 a.m.

    The president brought home the only US soldier in captivity before ending the useless war in Afghanistan...Right wingers are quick to send them off to fight some war for questionable reasons but not interested in bringing them home or caring for them after they've served(been used)....wake up kids,it ain't patriotic,you're just being used by corporate interests and the republican vampires that serve them!

  • Ralph West Jordan Taylorsville, UT
    June 3, 2014 6:54 a.m.

    Re" "TRUTH and Who am I sir?"

    At this point we REALLY don't know what led up to Bergdahl's capture! We only assume we know from assumptions made by others, and fanned by the ever carnivorous and self serving press and media! No matter what the circumstances were that led to his capture I still have this nagging question I ask myself and now I ask you! If that captured soldier were my son or daughter, would I not want the POTUS and the military to exhaust all efforts in gaining their release!

    If indeed Bergdahl did walk away, we have no Idea of his mental state or motivation! I do know what PTSD can do as I served with a sergeant who suffered from his service in Korea. It was not pretty, he ended his suffering by committing suicide!

    I am wondering if it wouldn't be best to wait and let those who are REALLY in the know, ie the Military and State dept. to sort things out, then when all the facts are on the table, we can discuss the issue intelligently!

  • Xplor Mesquite, NV
    June 3, 2014 6:45 a.m.

    "a groundswell of anger is rising over the Obama administration’s silence on perhaps the most blah blah rant rave blah blah. . ." Great! Another non-issue for Chaffetz, Lee, Stewart and the rest to spend the next 3 years "investigating" and bloviating over while doing absolutely nothing to move the nation forward. The fact that the president exists causes "a groundswell of anger" with some of these clowns.

  • JWB Kaysville, UT
    June 3, 2014 6:17 a.m.

    Our military men and women not only have creeds and conventions to agree to, they have consciences they were given when coming into this life. I remember soldiers in the Army who had disagreements with how the Vietnam war was handled but they still served and served well. There were others that subverted the system and even went AWOL or deserted to another country. They were not POWs in that other country. POWs have a code they are to live by with honor and integrity. Senator McCain may do some things politically that I don't agree with but he definitely set the example for military men and women for a standard of that code. He is one of the politicians that knows what it is like in a captive situation in places that were very heinous for guards and food in maltreatment.

    This President and high advisers are not taking us into Integrity of mind and conscience with high standards. Moroni and Helaman and others went through this same type of process in their time. Military members and especially their leaders need the fortitude and prayerful thoughts today. Wickedness never was happiness.

  • TA1 Alexandria, VA
    June 3, 2014 6:11 a.m.

    You NEVER leave a fellow soldier behind (see prior post to mine about "Soldiers Creed" - "I will never leave a fallen comrade") and any wrong doing on the rescued SGT's part will be addressed by the Military Justice system under UCMJ (and it will be addressed there not in the political court although more than a few politicians would like to do otherwise).

  • EnglishAlan Rugeley, Staffs
    June 3, 2014 5:32 a.m.

    "TRUTH," It is easy to sit comfortably at home in Salt Lake City, and say such things about this young man. Have you ever been in combat? Have you ever been in constant fear of your life, and the lives of those that you serve with? Have you EVER had such pressure that it seems inescapable? If not, you are not stating "TRUTH" but your own opinion of what it MAY be like.

    This young man may have deserted his post, and may have cost lives, BUT none of us know what fear and suffering might have led to that decision, or whether something inside just "snapped" because of that suffering and fear. Another thing we don't know is what would be our actions faced with that same level of fear and pressure. As I say, it's easy to sit home and lay guilt on someone, but it is totally unfair if we have never walked where he walked.

    Every life lost in the cause of freedom is heartbreaking. Some live through wars, and yet are never really alive again. This young man from Idaho may well be one of the latter. He has my sympathy.

  • Incite Full Layton, UT
    June 3, 2014 5:29 a.m.

    There is currently evidence under investigation and coming to the public that this fellow was no prisoner of war, but went AWOL and is a taliban sympathizer. If this is proven, it would be a huge embarrassment considering the loss of life and scoundrels set free to acquire his return.

  • waikiki_dave Honolulu, HI
    June 3, 2014 5:13 a.m.

    Concerning this matter, I think the President's actions would have been criticized in either way. This soldier has paid a price for his actions and will likely be paying for it for the rest of his life.

  • Hamath Omaha, NE
    June 3, 2014 5:12 a.m.

    "he was a deserter" according to some undisclosed source.

    This is not the time nor the place to bring this type of uncorroborated evidence up. Get more proof before publishing "he said" type of things. To me this just feels like gossip that's been published. And at the time when he is returning home. Yuck!

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    June 3, 2014 4:17 a.m.

    " How many soldiers will be captured now . . . "

    I don't know.

    How many American service members will desert now that they know they might be held captive for several years by the Taliban in miserable conditions . . . and then returned to the United States possibly to face charges?

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    June 2, 2014 11:46 p.m.

    So how should this have played out? Up until a few days ago no one here knew this guy existed. Now, not only does he exist, he's been released. Had he come to our attention prior to his release, there would have been faux outrage. The commander cares naught for his soldiers, we'd see here. Accusations all over the place. So here we are, the administration has secured his release. Traded for five small time thugs who can only hope to cause enough terror that we respond to it a hundred fold. Professional victims, those. Traded for someone it turns out must have been with John Kerry on a swift boat; people can be found to say bad things if need be. So, knowing what you do now, should we have left him there? Or maybe gotten a good hockey goalie out of the deal? Seriously, if the taliban wanted more than a handful of beads for this, an american captive, would you respect the administration that turned the deal down?

  • Brio Alpine, UT
    June 2, 2014 11:41 p.m.

    The next in an ever growing line of debacles by this administration. Besides being illegal by not giving Congress the required 30 day notice, this action of giving back to the Taliban their top 5 highest ranking officials held in prison by the USA will, undoubtedly rejuvenate the Taliban.

    There will undoubtedly be many more American lives lost because of this negotiated trade with and for terrorists. This was a major mistake by Obama and another lapse in judgment.
    It would certainly be nice to have a do-over of the last presidential election. There are many who would undoubtedly change their votes thereby causing a different and much needed outcome.

  • Who am I sir? Cottonwood Heights, UT
    June 2, 2014 10:20 p.m.

    The "cost" will take a decade to determine. How many lives will be lost due to the release of the 5 terrorists? How many soldiers will be captured now that it is known our president will negotiate and release 5 times the number of captives as they release? This is such a diplomatic failure!

  • TRUTH Salt Lake City, UT
    June 2, 2014 9:44 p.m.

    Such a waste.......the individual lives of everyone of these men who laid down their lives for Bergdahl were better men than this traitor and collaborator. Just reading the accounts of the soldiers who served with Bergdahl who were forced to sign non disclosures by the Obama administration up until now, say he was a loser and a deserter and should never have represented our country.

  • 483bzac West Valley City, UT
    June 2, 2014 9:39 p.m.

    Soldiers Creed:
    "I am an American Soldier.
    I am a warrior and a member of a team.
    I serve the people of the United States, and live the Army Values.
    I will always place the mission first.
    I will never accept defeat.
    I will never quit.
    I will never leave a fallen comrade.
    I stand ready to deploy, engage, and destroy, the enemies of the United States of America in close combat...."
    Unfortunately soldiers still have a duty to never leave a fallen or captured comrade even though that comrade hasn't done his duty to place the mission first and never quit.

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    June 2, 2014 9:37 p.m.

    "Did cost of NOT recovering Idaho POW include the life of Utah soldier?"


    What if the prisoner exchange never happened?

    What would the question be then?

    "Did cost of NOT recovering Idaho POW include the life of Utah soldier?"