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Another Soldier Says Bergdahl Deserted, Confirms Radio Chatter About His Desire to Talk to Taliban

Staff Sgt. Justin Gerleve was Bowe Bergdahl's squad leader in Afghanistan. In an interview today he says Bergdahl "deserted" and needs to be held accountable.

CNN's Jake Tapper spoke to Sgt. Gerleve today saying, "I believe that he totally deserted not only his fellow soldiers but his leadership that wanted the best for him and for our country." Gerleve said he believed this because Bergdahl had mailed his computer home prior to his disappearance and had talked idly about walking into the mountains.

Asked by Tapper whether he believed IED attacks became more severe after Bergdahl's disappearance, Gerleve replied, "The attacks did get more direct. The IED's did get more pinpoint to our trucks rather than on the side of the road...I can't say for sure the leakage was from Bergdahl but it's kind of that suspicion that it did happen."

Sgt. Gerleve also confirmed there had been a radio transmission intercepted shortly after Bergdahl went missing which suggested he was looking for someone to talk to from the Taliban. Tuesday Tapper interviewed Sgt. Buetow who was the first to reveal the radio chatter.

When asked by Tapper whether Bergdahl should have been left behind, Sgt. Gerleve replied, "No American needs to be left behind. But ... he needs to be accountable for his actions, accountable for what he did, and he needs to withstand a trial."

Earlier today, Tapper revealed on Twitter that all of the veterans he has spoken to believe it was the correct move to try and get Bergdahl back even though, like Sgt. Gerleve, many consider him a deserter.


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