'I Helped Train This Soldier. He Deserted His Unit': Bowe Bergdahl's Former Squad Leader Reacts To Desertion Charges
U.S. Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl is speaking out for the first time about the hell he says he went through at the hands of the Taliban.
“I was chained to a bed spread-eagle and blindfolded,” He wrote in an open letter to America just released by his lawyer. “Some of the things they did was beat the bottoms of my feet and parts of my body with a copper cable.”
He says he "tried to escape approximately 12 times" and was captured and locked up in a cage.
He wrote, “I was kept in constant isolation during the entire five years, with little to no understanding of time, through periods of constant darkness, periods of constant light and absolutely no understanding of anything that was happening beyond the door I was held behind.”
Some soldiers who served with Bergdahl say they are not buying it.
INSIDE EDITION’s Diane McInerney spoke to former Staff Sergeant Justin Gerleve.
McInerney asked, "Do you believe he is a deserter?"
He replied, "Oh yes, I believe 100% he deserted us."
Bergdahl faces possible life in prison if convicted of desertion charges for walking away from his unit in 2009. Many blame him for the deaths of six soldiers who they say were killed searching for him after he went missing.
INSIDE EDITION spoke to former Sergent Josh Korder who also served with Bergdahl.
He has the names of some of the dead heroes tattooed on his back.
He told INSIDE EDITION, "I read his statement about his captivity. I do have problems with it because we saw him walk from the truck to that helicopter and he wasn't limping and he wasn't having to be carried. He was perfectly fine."
The Taliban released propaganda videos of Bergdahl, claiming he was well treated, but he says he was actually subjected to relentless torture.
Bergdahl wrote in his letter, “Told I would leave the next day, and the next day told I would be there for 30 years. Told I was going to die there. Told to kill myself. Told I would have my ears and nose cut off, as well as other parts of my body.”
Korder told INSIDE EDITION, "There should not be any kind of forgiveness for what he did."