November 3, 2017

The judge shows compassion to Bowe Bergdahl.

All Bergdahl got was a dishonorable discharge, his rank reduced to private, and a forfeiture of $1,000 pay for 10 months.

107 comments:

rhhardin said...

You go girl! Or maybe I've got them mixed up.

Michael K said...

Miscarriage of justice.

Bergdahl is a traitor. Dishonorable DC used to include loss of citizenship. I wonder if it still does ?

Fabi said...

Chuck will be along shortly to tell us how this was all Trump's fault.

Khesanh 0802 said...

I hope the review board/officer refuses to accept this verdict. Bergdahl deserves jail time at the very least. This is not an AWOL case this is a desertion case.

OldGuy said...

BS. The "Judge" spit in the face of every man and woman who has done their duty.

And even more so to those who died doing it.

And their families.

Former Infantry Officer - South Viet Nam, Republic of

Snark said...

"You go girl! Or maybe I've got them mixed up."

OMG, I laughed.

William said...

Too lenient. I wouldn't support Draconian punishment, but he shouldn't walk away with back pay for dishonorable service. Also, he needed to spend a year or two in the stockade.......He's more a fool or a flake than a traitor, but, whatever his motivation, he caused real harm to the men he served with......Side note: Some were saying that Trump's hostile comments as a candidate interfered with due process. Ok, but why can't the same be said about Obama's Rose Garden ceremony and Susan Rice's praise of his service?

clint said...

No empathy for those who died trying to "rescue" the deserter?

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Horseshit.
Not much compassion for the guys put at risk and grievously injured searching for this asshole, I guess. Not much consideration for this asshole's attitude now-for his continued self-justification and thumbing of his nose at our military (saying he was treated better by the Taliban, etc).

I can't wait for his Rolling Stone cover.

James K said...

Ok, but why can't the same be said about Obama's Rose Garden ceremony and Susan Rice's praise of his service?

Wait, so you're suggesting Obama and Trump should be held to the same standard? Heresy!

J. Farmer said...

@Michael K:

Bergdahl is a traitor.

Desertion, a bad enough offense, is not treason. I agree that the sentence was likely overly lenient, but I don't think there is any evidence that Bergdahl was a traitor in any normal sense of the word.

Kevin said...

To think of all the men from America or her allies in all of the wars who faced firing squads for far, far less. It's just sick. What is the West even doing anymore? How can a civilization just decide to quit, and think that everything is going to still be peachy, as long as I can watch John Oliver on my iPad?

Snark said...

"Side note: Some were saying that Trump's hostile comments as a candidate interfered with due process. Ok, but why can't the same be said about Obama's Rose Garden ceremony and Susan Rice's praise of his service?"

I would suspect it's less of an issue because the presumption is supposed to be one of innocence prior to a trial or court martial.

PackerBronco said...

I'm sure that Berdahl didn't really mean to dessert to the enemy so I guess it isn't really a crime or something ...

Curtiss said...

The judge decided to take a knee.

JPS said...

I knew this guy slightly, and was shocked when he disappeared.

https://www.nytimes.com/2014/12/16/us/a-deserter-who-chased-conflict-is-jailed-for-shirking-duty.html

After his disappearance, he seems to have tried to redeem himself. Note the French general testifying for leniency.

This man is serving four years in prison. I truly do not understand how Bergdahl gets less. Combing Fort Drum, NY in the cold is unpleasant. Combing the hinterlands of Afghanistan is a whole different task.

PackerBronco said...

Blogger J. Farmer said...

I don't think there is any evidence that Bergdahl was a traitor in any normal sense of the word

Ah, he was a traitor but he wasn't a traitor traitor ...

AllenS said...

Leaving your post and going over to the enemy is treason. Leaving your post and going home or somewhere to hide out is desertion. Big diff.

Nelson Kerr said...

OLDGUY you get to speak for yourself as a vet nut you have not right to speak for all veterans, Just yourself. check your ego I served for over 20 years and you do not speak for me.

Jason said...

Fucking Obama promotions.

I bet every unit the judge ever commanded, if he ever commanded anything besides his own LBE, was 100 percent green on SHARP training and 100 percent shit on everything else.

Those are the perfumed princes that got promoted under Obama.

No warfighter would have let this go without prison time... for the sake of all the good soldiers who do their duty.

PackerBronco said...

Blogger William said...
Ok, but why can't the same be said about Obama's Rose Garden ceremony and Susan Rice's praise of his service?


Because Obama is just so FABULOUS and we were damn lucky to have him as president!!!

Jason said...

Nelson. I served for over 20 years, too. OldGuy pretty much speaks for me.

Big Mike said...

He was on guard duty and deserted his post in wartime. This used to be a serious offense. If the Taliban had figured out that there was no one manning his guard post we would have lost some brave men. His punishment should reflect that.

JPS said...

On the bright side, at least we can stop referring to Bergdahl as "Sergeant."

We promote POW/MIAs in absentia assuming that they have served honorably and are continuing to do so if able. In former Private Bergdahl's case it amounted to giving him the benefit of the doubt, which he has erased.

Ron Winkleheimer said...

I was in the army, but never anywhere near combat. That said, I have some sympathy for him. He should never have been put where he was. He clearly was unsuited for military service and should have been discharged during basic training. That's one of the things basic training exists for, to identify the people who are unfit for military service. There is a category, unable to adapt to military service, and it exists for a reason.

Snark said...

He already did five years in Afghanistan. I'm sure that factored into the judgement. Many are going to see that as fairly sensible.

MadisonMan said...

A more -- artful? -- sentence would have taken Bergdahl's money and sent it to the families of the soldiers that died looking for him. Maybe garnish his wages for the next 5, 10, 15 years.

Clyde said...

Not enough.

Gospace said...

Jason said...
Nelson. I served for over 20 years, too. OldGuy pretty much speaks for me.


Ditto.

DKWalser said...

This is an example of compassion overcoming reason. There is a reason desertion in time of conflict carries harsh punishments. It makes it far less likely that soldiers will abandon their post when things get rough. Allowing compassion to overcome this reason makes it more likely that soldiers will desert in the future. It may have been compassionate to Bergdahl, but it was harsh to military discipline and to future soldiers whose lives may be lost because other soldiers abandoned them in a time of need.

AlbertAnonymous said...

Absolute Garbage!

Ray said...

I have mixed feelings on the verdict.

Supposedly he was kept in a cage, beat up, and tortured by the Taliban. If this is true, I think the Taliban did enough punishment to him that the US does not need to add on to it.

I recognize the injury and death that happened for many of those searching for him.

I hope some work is done to figure out how he got into the Army, and was allowed to stay in it. So more idiots like this are not in the Army.

holdfast said...

If the judge factored Trump's comments into the sentence, then that judge is being at least as inappropriate as Trump.

gg6 said...

Bergdahl deserted his post in a war zone - he's a traitor and should be punished as one. Whatever 'pain' he consequently suffered for the 4-5years w/ the Taliban was essentially self-inflicted and incidental so he still deserves to be punished for his act of treason.
To a great extent I consider this 'sentence' a result of his 'judge' being a career (NON-combat branch)JAG officer/lawyer. I suspect a jury of peers and a combat branch Judge would sentence him differently - I'd say AT LEAST 1year. But maybe the reviewing officer may yet decide to do that...I sure hope so.

Yancey Ward said...

What evidence supported his claim about his treatment by the Taliban? I am asking this question seriously.

Hammond X. Gritzkofe said...

Sets a VERY unfortunate precedent. A no-win for the Army.

Discipline cannot be sustained if this is the customary punishment for desertion in the face of the enemy. Confidence in the Rule of Law, a necessary condition for discipline and respect, cannot be maintained if this is not the customary punishment.

Per Wikipedia, Bergdahl was booted from the Coast Guard as unsuited to military service. The Army subsequently accepted him.

The Navy, determining underlying cause of two recent collisions at sea, has accepted the Reality thrust upon it. The Army, not so much.

- H. Gritzkofe; USAF, Ret.

gg6 said...

On second thought, I think the best punishment for all the guilty parties in this affair would be for Bergdahl, Obama and Susan Rice to be locked in a cell together for 5 years, no parole.

Achilles said...

When the shit hits the fan it is going to be decisions like this that prompt it.

When I see the NFL players kneel I remember the people in the unit that didn't come back. It pisses me off. It is totally irrational but some things are irrational. It will never change and fuck those players that kneel.

I would expect this person to move to a different country where it will be hard for his old platoon/company to find him. He solidly contributed to the deaths of friends and battle buddies. It was an 11B unit. I just wouldn't anticipate rational. The unit carries the honor of their dead.

Col. ____ ____ made a really poor decision here. I am not going to post the name or do anymore research. The rot in the officer corp is real. Bergdahl was an NCO when he did his. What SGT MAJ promoted someone like that to E5? It is hard for me to imagine Bergdahl didn't have some sort of serious mental instability. This wont be the end of the story.

Etienne said...

Special forces and the Air Force won the war. The Taliban fled to Pakistan.

Then the Infantry came in and built forts. They filled the forts with hundreds of riflemen, and put artillery on hills to try and protect their precious forts.

Meanwhile the Taliban saw how stupid they were and flooded back into Afghanistan, freshly equipped by the Pakistan army, and killed the Infantry day after day as they tried to leave their forts.

What I would do, is round up those Officers who built the forts, gas them to death, and generate electricity from the disposal of their bodies.

Todd said...

J. Farmer said... [hush]​[hide comment]
@Michael K:

Bergdahl is a traitor.

Desertion, a bad enough offense, is not treason. I agree that the sentence was likely overly lenient, but I don't think there is any evidence that Bergdahl was a traitor in any normal sense of the word.

11/3/17, 11:15 AM


Likely, LIKELY? It WAS overly lenient, an't no likely about it. Could have/should have been shot. He deserted his post and comrades. He didn't fail to return from leave. He put other solders lives in peril during subsequent searches and cause some to lose their lives.

Todd said...

PackerBronco said...

Because Obama is just so FABULOUS and we were damn lucky to have him as president!!!

11/3/17, 11:21 AM


It is such a shame we kept letting him down...

Mark said...

I have heard that he provided quite a bit of useful intelligence, which was factored into this decision.

Trump needs to shut up and let the justice system stand or fall on it's own before making his official statements part of the case. There's plenty of time to point fingers and name call after the initial verdict is read.

Etienne said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Hammond X. Gritzkofe said...

And yes, an unforced error by Obama is another in the train of poor decisions culminating in the present. Shoulda let him fester in Afghanistan.

Obama in so many ways seemed have made the diminution of the United States as a personal and political goal. Truly despicable.

That, as they say, is how you get more Trump.

Achilles said...

Hammond X. Gritzkofe said...
Sets a VERY unfortunate precedent. A no-win for the Army.

Discipline cannot be sustained if this is the customary punishment for desertion in the face of the enemy. Confidence in the Rule of Law, a necessary condition for discipline and respect, cannot be maintained if this is not the customary punishment.


I would expect extra-legal activity.

Per Wikipedia, Bergdahl was booted from the Coast Guard as unsuited to military service. The Army subsequently accepted him.

The Navy, determining underlying cause of two recent collisions at sea, has accepted the Reality thrust upon it. The Army, not so much.

- H. Gritzkofe; USAF, Ret


I was going to throw a chair force reference out there but I don't feel inclined. All 3 major wings of the military have some serious infestations of moral rot and lack of discipline. The air force in particular has been weeding out combat pilots and allowing SJW's to take flag positions. The Navy is not far behind. I saw first hand the politicization of field combat decisions in the army.

In the end if there isn't a purge this will be the true downfall of the country.

Etienne said...

Yancey Ward said...What evidence supported his claim about his treatment by the Taliban? I am asking this question seriously.

Doctors determined his injuries when he was returned from captivity. He was deployed healthy, and returned barely able to walk.

His treatment has no bearing on the charges.

If he had not left the fort, he would have gained 10 pounds on MRE's and banana cream pies, and returned home with a chest full of medals, and gotten a good job in the fast food industry.

AReasonableMan said...

Bergdahl is a religious, red-state, gun-nut, and army volunteer, not someone I usually need to defend on this forum. I think he got a bad rap because of the association with Obama. If Obama hadn't been involved in his release then I think a more reasonable assessment of Bergdahl would have been possible. I blame Obama.

Todd said...

AReasonableMan said...

If Obama hadn't been involved in his release then I think a more reasonable assessment of Bergdahl would have been possible. I blame Obama.

11/3/17, 1:14 PM


I call BS. I don't care if you are Audie Fing Murphy, you desert your post in a combat zone, that is desertion and can rate a firing squad. I blame Obama AND Bergdahl.

Rick said...

They should have just left him. I can't believe we traded 5 terrorists for this guy. Obama is a numbnut.

Paul said...

"The judge shows compassion to Bowe Bergdahl".

And what about compassion for those that gave their lives trying to 'save' Bergdahl?

And compassion for those GIs that don't desert?

He should have got 30 years in Leavenworth if not the firing squad!

Etienne said...

Paul said......what about compassion for those that gave their lives trying to 'save' Bergdahl?

Hundreds of millions of men have died defending forts. It's a bad gambit. It wastes your pawns.

We can be compassionate about their wasted lives, but only after rounding-up the officers who chose that method to prosecute a war. All of them sitting in their swivel-chairs in the rear, drinking cocoa.

brylun said...

Who is Colonel Jeffrey Nance? What is his background?

walter said...

Nice deflection, Etienne. Bowe thanks ya.

Michael K said...

"Bergdahl is a religious, red-state, gun-nut, and army volunteer, not someone I usually need to defend on this forum."

Running though a field of straw men with a torch.

Bergdahl was kicked out of Coast Guard basic training. Why the Army took him is a mystery, especially with an "unsuitable" tag already on him.

The father is a nut. Not much chance of any of your straw men being anything but.

Michael K said...

Bergdahl's lawyers have already appealed the dishonorable DC as "preventing him from claiming benefits of his service."

Freder Frederson said...

Why the Army took him is a mystery, especially with an "unsuitable" tag already on him.

In 2008, the Army was taking anyone with a pulse. He should have washed out but we needed cannon fodder for George Bush's unnecessary wars.

Freder Frederson said...

Could have/should have been shot.

Don't be ridiculous. We have executed exactly one soldier for desertion since the Civil War, and that was during World War II, at a particularly grim time of the war (during the Battle of the Bulge).

virgil xenophon said...

What ACHILLES SAID!!!@1:10pm/

USAF 100 missions north and 100 south RVN 67-68

virgil xenophon said...

corr: 132 South

Larry J said...

On January 31, 1945, Private Eddie Slovak was executed by firing squad for far less that this.

Freder Frederson said...

On January 31, 1945, Private Eddie Slovak was executed by firing squad for far less that this.

Actually, Slovik was given ample opportunity to rescind his desertion and return to his unit, but flatly refused. And as I said, he was the only U.S. soldier executed for desertion since the Civil War.

JPS said...

Achilles @1:01:

"Bergdahl was an NCO when he did his. What SGT MAJ promoted someone like that to E5?"

I believe he was a PFC when he did this, and he was administratively promoted to Sergeant while in captivity - the presumption being that he deserved it if he'd been captured and was behaving honorably, and that if not we'd sort it out after getting him back.

walter said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Etienne said...

Michael K said...Bergdahl's lawyers have already appealed the dishonorable DC

I believe all DD's are reviewed after a set time, and many are upgraded.

Most people, who are not career, never return to government service, or use veterans benefits anyway. So the type of their discharge is meaningless in the big scheme.

JPS said...

ARM @1:14:

"Bergdahl is a religious, red-state, gun-nut, and army volunteer, not someone I usually need to defend on this forum. I think he got a bad rap because of the association with Obama."

This is a straight question and I'll try to ask it without anger: Do you really believe that's what it comes down to, for your habitual sparring partners here? Hey, he's from Idaho, must be a gun guy, went into the military: I like him! Oh, wait - Obama praised him. He and his parents may be liberals. BOO! I hate him!

My problem with Bergdahl is that he deserted his unit in a combat zone and may well have gone looking for the Taliban, having decided that we're not the good guys, so therefore maybe they're not such bad guys. That Obama traded five very bad guys for him, had his parents to the Rose Garden, and sent Susan Rice to lie about him, is something I hold against Obama and Rice, not against him.

Do you understand there is a difference? Is everything about domestic politics to you? Are you able to understand that for some of us it's not? Are you directly familiar with the term DUSTWUN?

Todd said...

Etienne said...

Most people, who are not career, never return to government service, or use veterans benefits anyway. So the type of their discharge is meaningless in the big scheme.

11/3/17, 3:04 PM


In another age (like 12 or so years ago) having a DD could affect your job prospects as it was often asked on the employment form if you ever served and if so, what type of discharge. Not sure if that happens in today's "enlightened age".

Etienne said...

Officers and Enlisted are promoted automatically after they have minimum "time in grade" while POW or MIA.

The difference is, regular promotion requires performance reports, military knowledge tests, and specialty skills tests.

Pinandpuller said...

Incarceration might have turned him to Islam.

J. Farmer said...

PackerBronco:

Ah, he was a traitor but he wasn't a traitor traitor ...

No, he was not a traitor; he was a deserter. They are two different things.

@Todd:

Likely, LIKELY? It WAS overly lenient, an't no likely about it. Could have/should have been shot. He deserted his post and comrades.

Yes, likely. I am not informed of all the relevant facts in the case and do not know enough to render a full judgment. I have read some arguments that it is not even possible to draw a direct causal relationship between Bergdahl's desertion and the deaths attributed to the efforts to find them. Again, I don't know this material enough to have a confident opinion one way or another.

What I do feel confident in, though, is that I think a much bigger scandal than Bergdahl is that any American soldier is dying by Taliban hands for any reason. And the main reason they are dying is a vain attempt to prop up a corrupt regime in Kabul. Staff Sergeant Aaron Butler, age 27, was killed by an IED in Nangarhar province on August 16th, 2017. How many Americans do you think know his name? How many could find Nangarhar province on a map?

Todd said...

J. Farmer said...

11/3/17, 3:22 PM


Yes we get it! It is all the fault of the "system" and the little cogs have NO control or ownership of their behavior in the vast machine that is the military industrial complex.

Try to cloud the situation as much as you wish but the truth (undisputed) is that HE chose to walk away from his duty, his assignment, his responsibility, and his comrades. He was no "whistle blower" calling out a possible wrong and then being unfairly punished. The BEST case scenario is that he made a very bad situation much worse. Regardless, his current punishment is fair too little to qualify as justice.

J. Farmer said...

@Todd:

Yes we get it! It is all the fault of the "system" and the little cogs have NO control or ownership of their behavior in the vast machine that is the military industrial complex.

No, actually, you do not get it at all. Of course everyone is responsible for their individual behavior. That has nothing to do with what I was talking about. I was trying to put the issue in a larger context, which is that Bergdahl's case is insignificant compared to the much larger farce that is the Afghanistan War.

Try to cloud the situation as much as you wish but the truth (undisputed) is that HE chose to walk away from his duty, his assignment, his responsibility, and his comrades.

Quote one thing I have said to the contrary.

He was no "whistle blower" calling out a possible wrong and then being unfairly punished.

Again, never said he was.

AReasonableMan said...

JPS said...
This is a straight question and I'll try to ask it without anger: Do you really believe that's what it comes down to, for your habitual sparring partners here?


As others have noted, Bergdahl was not an ideal candidate for military service, yet he served. So, my sympathy is with him, despite his obvious flaws.

Yes, I think a lot of the anger towards Bergdahl was driven by partisan rage. As usual many people who commented were unfamiliar with all the facts, unlike the court, which has clearly seen things somewhat differently. To argue otherwise I think you have to come up with an explanation for the vast disparity between the court's view of Bergdahl and the view of say, FOX News. This does not mean that everyone is influenced solely by partisanship but certainly many were.

Jim at said...

I blame Obama. - ARM

You're blaming the guy who traded five, hardened terrorists for a deserter who got his fellow soldiers maimed and/or killed while they went looking for him?

How big of you.
But, it's a start.

Gospace said...

Etienne said...
Michael K said...Bergdahl's lawyers have already appealed the dishonorable DC

I believe all DD's are reviewed after a set time, and many are upgraded.

Most people, who are not career, never return to government service, or use veterans benefits anyway. So the type of their discharge is meaningless in the big scheme.


Dishonorable discharges are not reviewed after a set time. They can only be awarded by court martial. An upgrade has to go through The United States Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces.

With a dishonorable discharge in hand, there are many fine jobs you can get. Dishwasher, provided the employer isn't a veteran comes to mind. You're not getting any job with any company that requires a security clearance, because you're not getting one. You're not getting any job that requires a background check. No teaching, no child care, no a lot of things. A Dishonorable Discharge means you've been convicted of a felony. That also means no volunteer work with any organization that works with children.

A dishonorable Discharge is a big deal.

JPS said...

AReasonableMan,

Thanks for your response.

"Bergdahl was not an ideal candidate for military service, yet he served. So, my sympathy is with him, despite his obvious flaws."

See, this would be my description of a former soldier of mine who (before I reached the unit) deployed to Iraq and earned the hostility and contempt (which he fully returned) of his platoon-mates. I could feel sorry for him, even as I understood why his peers disliked him. But here's the thing: Had he walked off the base, he'd have forfeited that.

Did you happen to read the NYT article I linked? That guy still has my sympathy - and my disgust for what he did. (I remember the frantic search for him, in peaceful upstate New York.) I think four years was probably about right.

AReasonableMan said...

JPS, I read the NYT article.

For me the key sentences were:

He did not seek counseling, he said, because as a medical officer, he had seen other troops overmedicated and shunned by their units.

On Monday, his lawyer, Louis Font, said the tough sentence showed that “the Army continues to be tone deaf to mental illness and suicidal ideation.”


It is very difficult to seek psychiatric help in the military without harming your career, so the guy was in something of a bind. He acted irrationally but in the context of an irrational situation. Not sure this is directly comparable to Bergdahl since there really do seem to have been problems with Bergdahl's unit and he was also under the stress of being in a combat zone, which no doubt exacerbated his extant mental problems.

I can understand being angry with Bergdahl but he has also survived some pretty rough treatment already.

This is also from the NYT.

The Army’s chief investigator on the case testified at Sergeant Bergdahl’s preliminary hearing that he did not believe any jail time was warranted, and the preliminary hearing officer suggested that the whole episode might have been avoided “had concerns about Sergeant Bergdahl’s mental health been properly followed up.”

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/03/us/bowe-bergdahl-sentence.html

Etienne said...

Gospace said...Dishonorable discharges are not reviewed after a set time.

I don't think that's right. A buddy of mine was courtmartialed for second degree murder of a drug dealer, got a DD, and within three years was upgraded.

All he had to do was fill out a form at the VA.

He ran a successful blueberry farm in central Oregon until he passed away. His son now runs the farm.

Michael K said...

the whole episode might have been avoided “had concerns about Sergeant Bergdahl’s mental health been properly followed up.”

He should never have been qualified. That is the situation.

All the excuses for him are bullshit.

Read this and tell me he had it tough.

Michael K said...

To argue otherwise I think you have to come up with an explanation for the vast disparity between the court's view of Bergdahl and the view of say, FOX News.

Leftists think everyone else watches Fox News. MY leftist daughter gave me a copy of Bill O'Reilly's "Killing Lincoln" thinking I was a fan.

I read it and posted a negative review on Amazon, after which I heard from his fans for months.

Etienne said...

Michael K said...Read this and tell me he had it tough.

Those guys had a real mission. The troops in Afghanistan were all in forts getting rocketed every day, and very rarely found any enemy when they ventured out into the booby traps.

It's a stupid war, being led by idiots who cheated to get through the Academies.

JML said...

Jason said...
Nelson. I served for over 20 years, too. OldGuy pretty much speaks for me.

Ditto.

Another Ditto from me except I only served 8.5 years.

In addition, what Achilles said is spot on. The military has been purging warriors for the past 30 years. My wife and I both got out in 1990. It was starting then - saw Majors get promoted to LtCol who could not do anything competent except for colorful briefing overheads, and with a few exceptions, saw really fine Majors get passed over. It was sad. And for the record, I was just a vanilla 130 Nav who got lucky enough to be assigned to an Air Lift Control Element as an Ops Officer and then unlucky enough to get to a MAJCOM HQ position.

Birches said...

I'm disgusted. All of these STICK IT TO TRUMP people seem to debase themselves to his level. To me, that's worse than Trump because he doesn't pretend to be high minded.

Etienne said...

If the war in Afghanistan was conducted properly, there would have been daily carpet bombing of Pakistan tribal areas.

Instead, the design was to enrich the warlords and empty our treasury.

There is no plan to win by any means. The war in Europe wasn't won by precision bombing, it was won when we decided to carpet bomb whole cities after 1944.

We targeted the workforce, instead of the factories.

Put that in your wallet as a note to yourself.

Gospace said...

Etienne said...
Gospace said...Dishonorable discharges are not reviewed after a set time.

I don't think that's right. A buddy of mine was courtmartialed for second degree murder of a drug dealer, got a DD, and within three years was upgraded.

All he had to do was fill out a form at the VA.


The following link is one of many that say pretty much the same thing. A BCMR might upgrade a dishonorable discharge. And there's a might big IF on that might. It's not automatic, and filling out a form at the VA won't do it.

http://www.dd214.us/reference/DischargeUpgrade_Memo.pdf

It is possible the VA determined that an injury your friend received allowed him to receive VA treatment for that condition even though he has a dishonorable discharge. If so, they were skirting the intent of the law. They can do so for BCDs and OTHs, but near as I can determine, not DDs.

Gospace said...

I'd like to be able say that no one with problems in one service ever slips through and enlists in another. I'd like to be able to say that...

Had one particular case where a young man was before an academic review board in a Navy school, and going through his paperwork I noticed he had never been released from the Army Reserve to join the Navy. In actual fact, he was released early from active duty because he couldn't pass his Army schools and sent to a reserve unit- that he never reported to. So he was actually AWOL from the Army when he joined the Navy. I found that out when I called his unit to see if they had released him- They had never seen him. They worked faster then we did. Before we could fill out the paperwork transferring him back to the Army which he had never been discharged from, the reserve unit sent us backdated paperwork releasing him to enlist in the Navy, so he was our headache.

Anonymous said...

Once again from the elites, compassion for the weasel, utter contempt for the enlisted ranks. It's not like a military judge is ever going to have to put his rear end on the line in a war zone to find a deserter.

Desertion is supposed to carry a harsh penalty. Desertion that gets fellow soldiers killed should be a conversation starting at a firing squad comprised of buddies of the dead soldiers and perhaps ending on a compassionate note with life in prison. By being unable to even reach jail time for an actual crime that led to multiple deaths, the judge has indicated to the entire force that the Army does not have the backs of the enlisted ranks and will not see justice done.

Trump needs to get his staff together and do a thorough housecleaning of the leadership ranks in all the services, the politically correct culture that led to this ruling even being possible is certain to get lots of people killed in war if it's not rooted out.

Michael K said...

The war in Europe wasn't won by precision bombing, it was won when we decided to carpet bomb whole cities after 1944.

No, it was won by invading and occupying Europe by our allies and the Soviets.

Interesting POV.

Michael K said...

"It's a stupid war, being led by idiots who cheated to get through the Academies."

Once the Big Army arrived, the guys riding horses and leading the real militias were told to "shave and get into uniform."

Read "Jawbreaker."

Much the same mistake was made in Vietnam.

The West Point revelations are really worrisome.

Freder Frederson said...

The war in Europe wasn't won by precision bombing, it was won when we decided to carpet bomb whole cities after 1944.

This is demonstrably a lie. The U.S. never had a policy of "carpet" bombing in WWII. The U.S. always insisted that its daylight raids (and the U.S. never undertook strategic night bombing) were "precision" bombing. Even the British were not callous enough to admit that they were bent on destroying the civilian population. Their night time firebombings were designed to "dehouse" workers, not kill them.

And after all the money and personnel both us and the British spent on the strategic bombing campaign, its effectiveness is still under debate. The strategic campaign sucked huge numbers of the best and brightest away from ground forces and tactical air (which was extremely effective).

Michael K said...

"In 2008, the Army was taking anyone with a pulse. He should have washed out but we needed cannon fodder for George Bush's unnecessary wars."

Not true.

I talked to a guy last week who was RIFFed by telling him he failed a PT test and he was discharged. The Army was using every excuse to cut numbers although that was about 2010.

They are taking anyone right now, even waiving psychological disqualifications. Like Bergdahl.

Freder Frederson said...

Desertion is supposed to carry a harsh penalty.

Bullshit. This country has executed exactly one deserter since the Civil War. Even the prosecution was asking for fourteen years in this case.

Michael K said...

The strategic campaign sucked huge numbers of the best and brightest away from ground forces and tactical air (which was extremely effective).

Yes, that I agree with. Infantry was the absolute bottom of the manpower pool.

Michael K said...

" Even the prosecution was asking for fourteen years in this case."

You don't think that is a "harsh penalty?" I do.

Freder Frederson said...

I talked to a guy last week who was RIFFed by telling him he failed a PT test and he was discharged. The Army was using every excuse to cut numbers although that was about 2010.

Yes, but that was 2010, after Obama decided we needed to cut our losses. I worked for the Air Force from 2009-2011. There was a huge change early in 2010 where suddenly the order came down that "pencil whipping" PT tests was no longer acceptable.

Freder Frederson said...

You don't think that is a "harsh penalty?" I do.

Not when the consensus on this thread seems to think he deserved the death penalty.

KBK said...

You need scare quotes on "judge" and "compassion"

JML said...

cyrus83 said "Desertion that gets fellow soldiers killed should be a conversation starting at a firing squad comprised of buddies of the dead soldiers and perhaps ending on a compassionate note with life in prison."

Agreed!

Lem said...

A travesty.

Dan Hossley said...

I bet the judge never served in a platoon in combat.

Matthew Sablan said...

If the judge *truly* believed Trump prejudiced the case, then he should let the guy off completely free.

Etienne said...
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Etienne said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
exhelodrvr1 said...

Etienne,
Carpet bombing the population was not a significant factor in ending the war. In fact, armaments production in Germany was higher at the end of the war than at any previous point. The damage to the transportation network, including POL production, is what really made the difference.

ken in tx said...

FYI, E-1 (Private) basic pay is $1600 a Month. If they keep him on active duty at least 10 months and take $1000 of that, and taxes take another couple hundred, he will still have several $100 a month spending money. He can eat in the dinning hall and live in the barracks at no cost to himself. Since he is no longer to be confined, he can come and go as as any other E-! on active duty. He will be in what is called 'casual status' and be given a job like handing out towels at the post gym. Such is his punishment.

walter said...

Dunno..seems like the only real punishment now would be interacting with other soldiers.
"Hey guys!"
Maybe he'll be found at the gym with a towel stuffed into his mouth.

Jonathan Graehl said...

garbage person shows compassion for garbage person whose selfish+illegal actions killed worthy people
military needs high standards. but our society won't allow that

Jeff Hall said...

Michael K said...

Bergdahl is a traitor. Dishonorable DC used to include loss of citizenship. I wonder if it still does ?


Huh>