Cross-posted from Mike Malloy
"Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl has told his doctors and debriefers that he was repeatedly tortured by his Taliban captors and was kept in a cage for extended periods after twice trying to escape, according to U.S. officials familiar with initial reports on Bergdahl's condition.
"The officials cautioned that no conclusions have been reached about how Bergdahl was treated during nearly five years of captivity, and they said a definitive assessment of accounts from a young man whose psychological condition is fragile may never be possible."
Even if the truth is never known about his captivity, you can guess he wasn't given candy and flowers. And now he is home to face a new enemy in the conservative media. Funny how the "Pro-War/Support the Troops" cheerleaders at Fox seemed so eager to tear apart this POW, simply because his release by prisoner exchange was arranged by their #1 enemy -- President Obama. Fox "news" has shown remarkable callousness toward this soldier and his family, stooping to new lows, even for them.
Salon has more:
"Conservatives, once self-appointed wardens of the honor of 'the troops,' rushed to tear down Bergdahl and question the price paid for (or the merit of) a POW's freedom. He was a deserter, he's anti-American, and his father, per Bill O'Reilly, 'looks like a Muslim.'
"And now, Fox News' James Rosen has uncovered an EXCLUSIVE scoop that Bergdahl himself is a Muslim and a terrorist. In reporting out this bombshell story, Rosen broke new ground in hilariously thin sourcing.
"U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl at one point during his captivity converted to Islam, fraternized openly with his captors and declared himself a 'mujahid,' or warrior for Islam, according to secret documents prepared on the basis of a purported eyewitness account and obtained by Fox News.
"I can offer a quick translation here: Fox News is reporting that the freed American POW is actually a secret terrorist, according to a report based on a report based on the testimony of someone who was there, maybe.
"But it gets worse ... so much worse. Rosen gave some more details about the source of this obviously credible piece of intelligence:
"These real-time dispatches were generated by the Eclipse Group, a shadowy private firm of former intelligence officers and operatives that has subcontracted with the Defense Department and prominent corporations to deliver granular intelligence on terrorist activities and other security-related topics, often from challenging environments in far-flung corners of the globe.
"The group is run by Duane R. ('Dewey') Clarridge, a former senior operations officer for the Central Intelligence Agency in the 1980s best known for having been indicted for lying to Congress about his role in the tangled set of events that became known as the Iran-Contra scandal. He was pardoned by the first President Bush in December 1992 while on trial.
"I mean, when your source is a 'shadowy' group of operatives headed up by a guy whose claim to fame is lying to Congress on national security issues, maybe try and track down a confirming source before hitting 'publish.'"
That's pretty thin sourcing, even for Fox. But hey, terrorists gotta stick together, right? And it's not just the Rupert Murdoch network that's singing the "Hate Bergdahl" chorus. Plenty of Neocon politicos are joining this nasty bandwagon, as Huffington Post attests:
"Instead of rejoicing in the homecoming of an American soldier who spent five years as a captive of the Taliban, the Republican response has been one of contempt and condemnation.
"There'll be no welcome home festivities in Hailey, Idaho for the 28-year-old Bergdahl, not with the FBI confirming that his family has been receiving threats. Instead, he has become the center of a media storm of which he is unaware as he recuperates at the US military hospital in Landstuhl, Germany.