Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl has refused communication with his family since being freed from Taliban captivity, an unnamed Army official told the Wall Street Journal.
The official said Bergdahl hasn’t seen or spoken to his parents since he was released as part of a prisoner swap on the final day of May, ending five years of captivity that began when the soldier wandered off his post in Afghanistan in June of 2009. Officials aren’t sure what caused the tension between Bergdahl and his parents.
The initial goodwill surrounding Bergdahl’s release quickly gave way to scrutiny of the prisoner exchange that secured the soldier’s freedom, the circumstances of his disappearance and even the worldview of his father, Bob.
Republicans assailed President Obama for skirting a law that required the administration to inform Congress of the swap 30 days in advance, as well as for the national security implications of releasing five Taliban figures from Guantanamo Bay in exchange for Bergdahl.
Former members of Bergdahl’s platoon, meanwhile, branded the soldier as a deserter. Some conservatives raised suspicion about Bob Bergdahl over everything from tweets he wrote days before the exchange to his ability to speak Pashto to the unkempt beard he grew out of solidarity during his son’s captivity.
Sgt. Bergdahl returned to active duty Monday after completing his therapy at a military hospital in San Antonio, Texas.