A report published Wednesday in the Washington Post revealed that Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl was discharged from the United States Coast Guard for in 2006, two years before he enlisted in the Army.
The report included Bergdahl’s discharge, as well as some of the soldier’s disquieting journal entries and correspondences written before his 2009 disappearance in Afghanistan.
“I’m worried,” Bergdahl wrote in a journal entry prior to his deployment. “The closer I get to ship day, the calmer the voices are. I’m reverting. I’m getting colder. My feelings are being flushed with the frozen logic and the training, all the unfeeling cold judgment of the darkness.”
According to the Post, Bergdahl left the Coast Guard with an “uncharacterized discharge” a mere 26 days after he began basic training in 2006. There was no reason given for the discharge, and it’s unclear how he managed to gain acceptance to the Army in 2008. Friends told the Post that the discharge was due to psychological reasons.
An unnamed senior Army official told the Post the Army was indeed aware of Bergdahl’s discharge, but he could not confirm whether the soldier received a waiver to enlist. Bergdahl would have needed such a waiver to enlist following his discharge.
Bergdahl’s friend, Kim Harrison, provided the Post with his writings because she said she had grown unsettled with the nefarious characterizations of Bergdahl, who’s been accused by his former platoon mates of desertion.
Harrison, who used her former married name in the story because she is concerned for her safety, said she received a box filled with Bergdahl’s journal, his Apple laptop, a copy of the Ayn Rand novel “Atlas Shrugged,” military records and other items several days after he reportedly wandered off his base.
Harrison said Bergdahl is “the perfect example of a person who should not have gone” off to war.
Bergdahl has been scrutinized relentlessly by conservatives and Fox News personalities ever since his release.
Several former members of Bergdahl’s unit have used Fox to broadcast their desertion accusations and one of the channel’s hosts, Kimberly Guilfoyle, said last week that the POW might well have “come home either in a body bag or come home and gone straight to jail” had he been located by his fellow soldiers during his captivity.
During his testimony Wednesday before the House Armed Services Committee, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel denounced critics of Bergdahl and his family. Hagel said that Bergdahl’s conduct will be “judged on the facts — not political hearsay, posturing, charges or innuendo.”