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Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, Only US Prisoner Of Afghan War, Safely Returned

Submitted by on May 31, 2014 – 4:27 pmNo Comment

The White House announced today that Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, the only remaining American POW from either the Afghan or Iraq wars, had been released by the Taliban to US Special Forces. In exchange, the US released five prisoners from Guantanamo Bay to the government of Qatar.

Then Pvt. Bergdahl went missing from his unit’s base in Afghanistan in June 2009. He was captured by Taliban-affiliated Haqqani militants. The next month, the Department of Defense confirmed his capture, and the Haqqani group released a video positively identifying Bergdahl.  Details of his capture and detainment are not clear, but it’s thought that Bergdahl was held in Pakistan for much of his captivity.

The US engaged the Taliban in on-again off-again negotiations for years, enlisting the help of the Qataris as go-betweens.

According to government reports, the exchange took place near the Afghanistan-Pakistan border. Dozens of Special Forces were present, as were 18 Taliban members.

Aboard the load helicopter, Bergdahl reportedly communicated with the other service members by writing on a paper plate, scrawling “SF?” to ask if the men were special forces.

“Yes, we’ve been looking for you for a long time,” they responded, as Bergdahl began to cry, according to the reports.

The five Guantanamo prisoners were brought to Qatar by Qatari officials. As a condition of their release, they are not permitted to leave the Arab nation for a year.

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