Season two of the hit podcast Serial premiered this week, and dropped a bombshell right off the bat in episode one. This season examines the mysterious case of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, the U.S. soldier who left his post in Afghanistan and was captured by the Taliban. He was released in 2014 in exchange for 5 Taliban members imprisoned in Guantanamo Bay.
At the time, everyone was speculating over why Bergdahl left his post in the first place. Was he ambushed? Was he drunk? Did he go AWOL?
Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl says he walked off his base in Afghanistan to cause a crisis that would catch the attention of military brass. He wanted to warn them about what he believed were serious problems with leadership in his unit. And he wanted to prove himself as a real-life action hero, like someone out of a movie.
Bergdahl hasn’t spoken publicly about his decision or his subsequent five-year imprisonment by the Taliban and the prisoner swap that secured his return to the United States. But over the past several months he spoke extensively with screenwriter Mark Boal, who shared about 25 hours of the recorded interviews with Sarah Koenig for her popular podcast, “Serial.”
“As a private first-class, nobody is going to listen to me,” Bergdahl says in the first episode of the podcast, released Thursday. “No one is going to take me serious that an investigation needs to be put underway.”
Bergdahl, of Hailey, Idaho, was charged in March with desertion and misbehavior before the enemy. He faces up to life in prison, though an Army officer has recommended that Bergdahl’s case be moved to a special misdemeanor-level military court.
This is the reason that our soldiers put their lives at risk and altered their operations in Afghanistan. So Bowe Bergdahl could feel like Jason Bourne?
The first season of Serial was downloaded over 100 million times. It should be interesting to see if and how the revelations in Serial will affect the active Bergdahl military court case.