JOIN SGT BOWE BERGDAHL’S EVENT: SGT Bowe Bergdahl, US Army – POW *ANYWHERE YOU ARE* 3 Days of Action & Prayer

You’re invited to join other Bowe Supporters for a special “anywhere you are and everywhere you are event.”  What is an “anywhere you are and everywhere you are event”?  It’s an event that you can be part of exactly where you are.  You can participate at your kitchen table while in your pajamas if you want to!  This means that almost everyone can be involved in some way.

The name of the event is “SGT Bowe Bergdahl, US Army – POW *ANYWHERE YOU ARE* 3 Days of Action & Prayer” and it runs from November 27th through 29th.  It is being coordinated through Facebook but you don’t need to be on Facebook to participate in it.  Even people who don’t use a computer can help to achieve the goals of the event!

With the recent elections, it is very important for our newly elected Members of Congress to understand that there are hundreds of thousands of Bowe Supporters who are working hard to bring Bowe home. It’s also important to remind those who are returning to Congress of the same thing. Our nationally elected officials must know that we are all expecting them to keep Bowe’s rescue a top-level priority and that we are watching to see that they do.

During the 3 Days of Action and Prayer, we’re all joining together to contact our Members of Congress. There are four ways to do this. We can call or email during those days, we can write letters that will arrive at our Congressional Members’ offices during the same period or shortly thereafter. We can also speak with our elected officials face-to-face.  We must make them understand that “IT’S TIME TO BRING BOWE HOME!” Please follow HERE to find more information about how to contact Congress and how to locate the contact information for your Congressional delegation.

Another goal of the event is to raise awareness about Bowe’s captivity. Further, part of this particular goal is to encourage those who are just learning about Bowe to translate their awareness into action.  We must always remember that while it is very important to tell as many people as possible about Bowe, people must be willing to contact their elected officials and continue to spread the word about Bowe’s plight.

Less than four weeks after this event, many will be celebrating Christmas; the New Year will be following closely behind. The last Christmas that Bowe was able to spend with his family was in 2008. Every year thereafter he has been held captive by those who would delightfully steal the freedom of all Americans. This is a time for all of us to join together in prayer to ask that comfort would be brought to Bowe and his family during what is sure to be an especially difficult time. One can only imagine how painful it must be to have a beloved family member in Bowe’s situation. And it must be even more difficult during the Holidays. That empty place at the Holiday dinner table is a heartbreaking reminder that the Bergdahl family won’t be entirely whole until Bowe is back home where he belongs. Let’s all join together to stand strong for them. Let’s show our support so that the Bergdahl family will know that they are always in our thoughts and prayers. And for those who do not pray, please visualize Bowe home safe and sound with his family.  Bowe needs all of the kindness and compassion that his supporters have to offer.

If we all join together, we can also do something a little extra that will send our message of support to Bowe’s family.  Bowe’s Facebook page, “Waiting and Advocating for Sgt Bowe Bergdahl, US Army – POW” has nearly reached 10,000 members. Will you help to achieve that number by inviting the people you know to become a member of Bowe’s page? When his family members from all across the country look at the page, it will be uplifting for them to see that there are 10,000 standing strong for Bowe on the page alone. ONLY YOU CAN MAKE IT HAPPEN! Follow HERE to go to Bowe’s page.

Working together, we can raise awareness about Bowe’s plight. Keep an eye out for opportunities to tell his story. It might be at work, at school, at the grocery store, at the doctor’s office or on Facebook or Twitter. YOU are his voice- he cannot speak for himself.

Follow HERE to the event page on Facebook so that you can JOIN and show your support.  Please INVITE everyone you know to be part of Bowe’s event.  If you are on Facebook, you have the option of inviting your friends by using the invite button in the upper right side of the page.

New Hope for the Release of SGT Bowe Bergdahl? Reuters article indicates maybe.

A Reuters news article published on August 7, 2012 offers glimmer of hope for the release of SGT Bowe Bergdahl.

From the article:

The Obama administration, in a move aimed at reviving Afghan peace talks, has sweetened a proposed deal under which it would transfer Taliban detainees from Guantanamo Bay prison in exchange for a U.S. soldier held by Taliban allies in Pakistan.

U.S. officials have hoped the prisoner exchange, proposed as a good-faith move in initial discussions between U.S. negotiators and Taliban officials, would open the door to peace talks between militants and the government of Afghan President Hamid Karzai.

The revised proposal would send all five Taliban prisoners to Qatar first, said sources who spoke on condition of anonymity. Only then would the Taliban be required to release Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl, the only U.S. prisoner of war.

Previously, U.S. officials had proposed dividing the Taliban prisoners into two groups, and requiring Bergdahl’s release as a good-faith gesture to come before the second group of prisoners would be moved out of Guantanamo.

Bergdahl, now 26 years old, disappeared from his base in southern Afghanistan in June 2009 and is believed to be being held by Taliban militants in northwestern Pakistan.

The White House and the Bergdahl family declined to comment on the revised proposal for a deal.

Bowe Supporters on Facebook were both excited and cautiously hopeful when they heard this news.

Also from the article (emphasis added):

U.S. officials stress that the transfer, if it occurs, will be done in accordance with U.S. law, which requires Congress to be notified before any detainees are moved from Guantanamo.

Now is the time for those supporting Sergeant Bergdahl to ramp up efforts to contact their Members of Congress to tell that it is time to Bring Bowe home. For more information about how to contact your elected officials, follow HERE.

BOWE TUESDAY 159: Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl now held captive for 1113 days.

Today is BOWE TUESDAY 159. SGT Bowe Bergdahl has been held as a prisoner of war for 1113 days.

The U.S. Senate and the U.S. House of Representatives will be in session for another two weeks before they go on break. This would be a very good week to leave a phone message for your Senators and Representative. The U.S. Capitol Switchboard can be reached by calling (202)224-3121. When you call, give them your Senators’ names or Representative’s name and tell them that you wish to be connected to their office. Be sure you jot down what you want to say beforehand so that you can get in everything you want tell them. Keep it brief. Be sure to let them know that you are counting on them to do everything in their power to see that Bowe’s release is obtained. Tell them that you want to be able to depend on them to support any effort brought before them to rescue him from his captors. Follow HERE to confirm who your Members of Congress are. If you use this link, you will be able to find the direct lines to your Members of Congress. The main switchboard will get you there also, they just have to connect you.

Please help to raise awareness about Bowe’s captivity by changing your Facebook profile picture today to one that brings attention to Bowe. Please make a special post asking your friends to also make a call to their Members on Congress. And PLEASE share this post. And when you share on Facebook, you’d be amazed at how many shares happen just because you shared on your timeline.  And if you actually state on your post PLEASE SHARE, you’ll dramatically boost the chances of having someone else share your post. We all need to get Bowe’s name in front of as many people as possible.  Follow HERE for our BOWE TUESDAY post on Facebook.

We continue to ask Twitter users to send out some tweets during the day to tell others about Bowe using hash tags  #Bergdahl #bowetuesday #supportbowe #POW.  You can top by Twitter and retweet some of ours: https://twitter.com/WaitingForBowe OR https://twitter.com/POWMIAvoice

If you’re new to BOWE TUESDAY, follow HERE for a little info that you might find interesting:

If you are interested in helping to get Bowe’s name out on Twitter, please follow this HERE for more information.

Courage of the Father for Courage of the Son

A son learns many things from his father.  Among the things he learns is courage.  And this courage is not only that which conquers fear.  It is also the courage to be true to oneself and to one’s own inner compass that is the guide as to what is right and what is wrong.  

Today, as we honor all fathers for Father’s Day, we say a special prayer for Bob Bergdahl.  We are inspired by the courage he has shown in his fight to bring Bowe home.  We know, and can see, that his son has learned to be courageous by this same inspiration.

In remembrance of this day, we share with you a little poem about a son learning to be brave.

Father, Son.

The boy watched the ghosts
on the far side of the valley.
There under the black hill. He
stood by the farm gate and
watched. He was his father’s
son, a brave boy. But his
courage failed. He thought
about his father who he
revered. What would he do?
Should he tell his father?
There are ghosts. I’ve seen
them. They flicker and dance

about down there – and I am
so scared. His father had told
him: I believe what I can see
and touch, in what others proved
by bravery, by hard work.

Hard work. And so this was
hard; to go down there in
the dark, down to the river, under
the black hill. The boy set off.
A last look at the house where
his mother read him stories,
where his father ruled the roost
with his clear sight. It rode like
a ship in the night. He headed

for those shifting lights, chill in
the dark, stumbling over clods,
pants soaked by the drag of
lucerne. I can see him still.
When he got to the pigs, heard
them rooting, snuffling – content
in their sty – he almost turned.
He pushed on though, on trembling
legs, heart pounding fast enough
to die. And so he came to where
the ghosts danced – in triumph
ruled. They triumphed round him,

this clear-eyed son. He looked
around. A mile away cars swung
out at the junction, their sweeping
lights touching river mist. Joy.
He could go home. He could go
home, holding his dad’s hand.

                                                       by John Garth Raubenheimer

Bowe Bergdahl in the News

The June 21, 2012 issue of Rolling Stone offers an article by written by Michael Hastings, whose “Runaway General” profile in 2010 led to the dismissal of U.S. Gen. Stanley McChrystal, is the most revealing to date about the circumstances before and after Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl was taken captive by members of the Haqqani network.  “America’s Last Prisoner of War  includes details of the undisciplined state of  the U.S. Army unit that Sergent Bergdahl assigned to, the political maneuvering occurring in Washington D.C. and how it is impacting his possible release, and excerpts of the last email that he sent to his parents before he was captured.

From the article:

The discipline problems that had plagued Bowe’s unit back home only got worse when immersed in the fog of war. From the start, everything seemed to go wrong. In April, Lt. Fancey was removed from his post for clashing with a superior officer. He was replaced by Sgt. 1st Class Larry Hein, who had never held such a command – a move that left the remote outpost with no officers. According to four soldiers in the battalion, the removal of Fancey was quickly followed by a collapse in unit morale and an almost complete breakdown of authority.

The unruly situation was captured by Sean Smith, a British documentary filmmaker with The Guardian who spent a month embedded with Bowe’s unit. His footage shows a bunch of soldiers who no longer give a shit: breaking even the most basic rules of combat, like wearing baseball caps on patrol instead of helmets. In footage from a raid on a family compound, an old Afghan woman screams at the unit, “Look at these cruel people!” One soldier bitches about what he sees as the cowardice of the Afghan villagers he is supposed to be protecting: “They say like, the Taliban comes down and aggravated­ their town and harasses them… Why don’t you kill those motherfuckers? All of you have AKs. If someone is going into my hometown, I know my town wouldn’t stand for that shit. I’d be like, ‘Fuck you, you’re dead.'” Another soldier laments, “These people just want to be left alone.” A third agrees: “They got dicked with by the Russians for 17 years, and now we’re here.”

During the middle of May, Bowe went out on one of his first major missions. He described it in a detailed e-mail to his family dated May 23rd, 2009. What started as an eight-hour mission, Bowe recounted, ended up taking five days.

While another unit was setting up a night ambush in the mountains, an MRAP – the $1.5 million armored vehicle designed to protect soldiers from the roadside bombs being used by the Taliban – got hit with an IED. Bowe’s platoon was deployed to escort a tow truck to get it down off the mountain. But on the way to escort the truck, an MRAP in Bowe’s own platoon was hit by an IED. The unit found itself stuck in the mountains for four days, guarding the wreckage while their commanders debated whether to fly in the parts needed to fix the vehicles. Some of the time, Bowe wrote his family, was spent near a village that “was not too friendly to Americans” because it had been attacked by the Taliban. “So the elders were telling us to leave,” he reported, “because the taliban was there, and we couldn’t leave because command finely decided that they would fly in the parts (one MRAP needing a new engine) and would rebuild the MRAPs up there.”

Once the MRAPs were finally fixed, the unit started to leave the mountains, only to be hit by yet another IED – the third of the mission – and to come under a blistering attack from rocket-propelled grenades. “It was at the point that the guys where beginning to climb into the trucks that the first RPG hit about 30m away from them,” Bowe recounted, “and then the RPKs and the AKs began to splatter bullets on us, and all around us, the gunners where only able to see a few of them, and so where firing blindly the rest of the time, up into the trees and rocks. The .50 went down on the first shot on the truck i was in, and i had to hand up my SAW for the gunner to use. I sat there and watched, there was nothing else I was allowed to do.”

No soldiers were killed in the ambush, but Bowe blamed the screw-up on his superiors: “Because command where too stupid to make up there minds of what to do,” he wrote, “we where left to sit out in the middle of no where with no sopport to come till late mourning the next day.” He concluded his e-mail with a nod to the absurdity of the situation: “The end of the 8 hour mission that took five days, and so here i am. But Afghanistan mountains are really beautiful!”

And after Sergeant Bergdahl was taken captive:

It wasn’t long, though, before his parents began to grow frustrated by how the government was treating them in the midst of the ordeal. The Army, they felt, was subtly pressuring them not to speak to the press, and they were required to sign a nondisclosure agreement with the National Security Agency in order to view classified and top-secret material. In addition, Bob believes the military began monitoring their phones in case the kidnappers called – standard procedure in a hostage situation, but one that also enabled the U.S. military to keep tabs on the family.

Things soon got worse. Ralph Peters, an action-thriller writer who serves as a “strategic analyst” for Fox News, took to the air to condemn Bowe as an “apparent deserter.” The Taliban, he declared, could save the United States on “legal bills” by executing him. Horrified by such comments, Bob and Jani told their military liaison that they didn’t want the Army to mount an operation to rescue Bowe, fearful that he’d be killed – either by accident, or even on purpose, by an aggrieved soldier or the U.S. military itself. There have certainly been soldiers who have joined the drumbeat of hatred against Bowe: A recent Facebook post from one soldier in his unit called for his execution. Worried that any further public attention might put Bowe at greater risk, his parents decided to remain silent, releasing a statement to their local newspaper asking the press to respect their privacy.

In what appears to be an unprecedented move, the Pentagon also scrambled to shut down any public discussion of Bowe. Members of Bowe’s brigade were required to sign nondisclosure agreements as part of their paperwork to leave Afghanistan. The agreement, according to Capt. Fancey, forbids them to discuss any “personnel recovery” efforts – an obvious reference to Bowe. According to administration sources, both the Pentagon and the White House also pressured major news outlets like The New York Times and the AP to steer clear of mentioning Bowe’s name to avoid putting him at further risk. (The White House was afraid hard-line elements could execute him to scuttle peace talks, officials involved in the press negotiations say.) Faced with the wall of official silence, Bob and Jani began to worry that the Pentagon wasn’t doing all that it could to get their son back. As Bowe’s sister, Sky, wrote in a private e-mail: “I am afraid our government here in D.C. would like nothing better but to sweep PFC Bergdahl under the rug and wash their hands.

Read the  FULL ARTICLE at Rolling Stone online.

 

EARLIER ARTICLES AND VIDEOS

These articles and videos have been published over the last thirty days beginning with the video that broke three years of near silence by the Bergdahl family regarding Bowe’s capture and captivity.

VIDEO from the Daily:


 

ARTICLE “Idahoan’s Unlikely Journey to Life as a Taliban Prisoner” from The New York Times:

Last week his anguished family broke a yearlong silence and announced that their son had become the centerpiece in secret but stalled negotiations between the Obama administration and the Taliban over a proposed prisoner exchange. The deal, which would trade five Taliban prisoners held in Guantánamo Bay for Sergeant Bergdahl, is considered a crucial first step toward striking a broader political settlement with the Taliban to bring the decade-long war to an end.

Sergeant Bergdahl’s father, Robert Bergdahl, who said he went public to try to push the Obama administration to revive the talks, has in the meantime reached out to the insurgents. He is now in regular e-mail contact with a man he believes is a member of the Taliban with accurate knowledge of his son.

Read the FULL ARTICLE at The New York Times.

 
ARTICLE “Waiting for Bowe: America’s Last Captured Soldier” from TIME magazine:

Robert and Jani Bergdahl, parents of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, in Hailey, Idaho, May 12, 2012. Bowe Bergdahl is America’s only known current prisoner of war.

Nearly three years ago, Private First Class Bowe Bergdahl, a machine gunner with the 4th Brigade (Airborne), 25th Infantry Division, disappeared from his outpost in eastern Afghanistan. A short time later, the military learned that Bowe had been captured by the Taliban.

For every parent who sends their son or daughter to war, the ultimate nightmare is seeing a uniformed officer walking up to the house to tell you your child is dead. For Bob and Jani Bergdahl, the nightmare has no end, as their son has been held by the Taliban for nearly three years.

Late last week, I had the honor of meeting with Bob.

Since his son’s capture, he’s become a student of the history, politics and religion that permeates Afghanistan and Pakistan. He taught himself Urdu and Pashto so he could read from news reports and chat rooms in the area, and so if it ever came to it, so he could talk with his son’s captors. Nearly two years after Bow’s capture, Bob made a video he posted on Youtube where he appealed directly to the Pakistani military for Bowe’s release.

Read the FULL ARTICLE at TIME online.

 
ARTICLE & SLIDESHOW” America’s Last Living POW: Christopher Morris Photographs a Family in Waiting” TIME magazine:

After their son was captured, the Bergdahls kept their silence. Intensely private, devout Presbyterians, they chose to work behind the scenes to try and bring their son home. But a week ago, an interview Bob had given was published in a local newspaper. It said that he was frustrated with the government for not doing enough to bring Bowe home. Bob decided to break his silence. “We do not want the American people to think we are dissatisfied with the way our government has proceeded,” Bob says. “The problem is this is extremely complex. It involves several different parties—state actors and non-state actors. This is going to be difficult to reconcile, which is why we believe diplomacy for the hostages—and Bowe’s not the only one, there are other hostages—negotiations, diplomacy are the window of opportunity here.

Read the FULL ARTICLE at TIME online.

 

VIDEO “Bowe Robert Bergdahl: The Last Prisoner of War” TIME magazine online. FOLLOW TO VIEW