Video of Bowe Bergdahl's Release Adds Fuel To Firestorm
Dramatic, just-released video of the release of U.S. Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl in Afghanistan has surfaced.
Bergdahl looks dazed and blinks his eyes repeatedly as he sits in a truck in the video released overnight by the Taliban. The American POW is clean-shaven and wears traditional Afghan clothes.
We asked psychologist Dr. Lillian Glass to analyze the video. Glass told INSIDE EDITION's Jim Moret, "You see that he's having a lot of problems adjusting with his eyes. A lot of blinking. A lot of tension with his mouth area."
Moret asked, "Does he look dazed to you, as if he's been in darkness of if he's been drugged?"
"He may be drugged and he may have been in darkness. It may have been a combination of both," said Glass.
In the video, Bergdahl is surrounded by heavily-armed Taliban fighters. Another fighter carries a white flag on a stick, reportedly to signal U.S. forces who landed in a Black Hawk helicopter to pick up Bergdahl in exchange for five senior Taliban leaders.
Glass noted, "They're very much on red alert. They're ready to fire at a second's notice."
Bergdahl and two Taliban fighters approach three Americans in civilian clothes. They briefly shake hands in greeting. Bergdahl is then patted down—a necessary precaution says former U.S. Navy SEAL Howard Wasdin.
Wasdin told INSIDE EDITION, "That was to make sure he didn't have any IED's or a chest bomb or anything on him."
Then a quick thumbs up is signalled to the chopper that all is A-OK. The U.S. team backs up and the Americans bid the Taliban farewell with a friendly wave.
Wasdin said, "The guys are there waving, waving. Turning back around, waving back and forth at them. That was the guy that was the go-between, between the CIA and the Taliban there."
Bergdahl is carrying a plastic bag, reportedly with a head scarf he'd been given as a parting gift by the Taliban. The bag is thrown away as he approaches the chopper and he's given one more patdown before boarding, just in case.
As the chopper takes off and flies away, the Taliban flash a misspelled message of good riddance: "Don't come back to Afghanistan."
Comparing the video of Bergdahl as a ballet dancer before he joined the Army to how he walked after five years as a POW, Glass noted, "His gait is very duck-like. He's unsteady on his feet as though he's going to fall down."
Meanwhile, there is also growing outrage that the five Taliban leaders who were released in exchange for Bergdahl are now living in the lap of luxury in the wealthy Persian Gulf nation of Qatar. They're staying within a walled compound where they are staying. They are not prisoners.
One Taliban leader in Afghanistan was quoted as saying: "As soon as they arrived in Qatar, they rejoined the Taliban. We don't care about U.S. conditions and obstacles." [Source: The Daily Beast]
Now, the new video of the release of Sergeant Bergdahl, who some are calling a deserter and a traitor, is sure to add more fuel to the firestorm.