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June 2014 Board Blowup The Argument

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#161 Nonny

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 10:37 AM

Thank you, yadda and Specs.  I appreciate having the burden of response lifted from my shoulders in this matter.   :)
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#162 Rhea

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 10:41 AM

Any further discussion of all of this should be taken to a PM or IC. You all can discuss it in IC - I'm not going to discuss it further because I believe there's nothing else left for me personally to say as a mod. Perhaps Mikoto will have a different perspective. It would be far more appropriate for Nonny to address a PM to LotS if she feels like she's been wrongly accused rather than arguing about it in a thread.

Edited by Rhea, 09 June 2014 - 10:47 AM.

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#163 Mikoto

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 11:00 AM

No I'm not discussing it further in this thread (though I may in IC if I feel there is a need) as it's already drifted off course. Other than to say Nonny could have discussed it with me in PM, my inbox is always open if a member feels s/he has been wronged or I've missed something important.
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#164 yadda yadda

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 11:06 AM

Being relative new here I was not aware of the IC or PM protocol for discussing moderation issues. I am now and will certainly avail myself of those avenues should the need ever arise in the future. I'm sorry if I ruffled any feathers by getting involved or raising questions inappropriately.

#165 Mikoto

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 11:09 AM

Though perhaps I should have said I'm discussing it no further other than to boot Nonny from the thread also for post #47. I appreciate what Yadda was trying to say but my opinion is closer to Rhea's than anyone else. It came across as racist and that isn't acceptable behaviour either.

And Yadda, thank you for understanding. You are new so I wouldn't have expected you to automatically know procedure.
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#166 Spectacles

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 02:03 PM

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Rhea: Any further discussion of all of this should be taken to a PM or IC.

It was, early this morning. But apparently raising an issue in IC is now a form of pissing into the wind. :) So that was a waste of time.....
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#167 Mark

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 04:06 PM

Mark: Many of you know more than I do regarding this topic...so I ask, wasn't our military going to have to release these Taliban prisoners upon our withdrawal from Afghanistan? Weren't they considered political prisoners, and not prisoners of war?
Also, for all we know, Bergdahl may have been suffering from a mental illness that led to his leaving his post. Also, for all we know, Bergdahl may have been on a secret intelligence gathering mission for our intelligence community, who are undoubtedly needing intelligence info concerning our withdrawal from the region and what will likely happen afterward. There seem to be so many people jumping to conclusions regarding this whole topic, and it IS clouding the few facts we (the general public) are able to gather.

I suggest that we give our military (and President) the benefit of the doubt regarding the trade for this prisoner. If suffering a mental illness, we certainly wouldn't want him to suffer more because of where he ended up, and if on a secret mission, we would definitely want to learn any valuable insights he may have gained during his imprisonment. Then again...NONE OF THE ABOVE may be true, and he COULD be completely guilty of going AWOL.

As to any soldier/s who may have died looking for him....I ask you...would ANY of us have done less if it were one of our friends who'd gone missing and for whatever reason? Only if Bergdahl went AWOL in his right mind would he (or anyone else possibly involved with his AWOL), be found at least partially responsible for the death/s of any soldiers who attempted to find him.
I salute all of the courageous men who would go in search of a fellow soldier not knowing of their guilt or innocence of desertion. Giving your life and giving your friend the benefit of a doubt is a high compliment to your character, if not to Bergdahl's. You all deserve medals of valor.

Edited by Mark, 09 June 2014 - 05:54 PM.

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#168 BklnScott

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 05:09 PM

Mark, I think that's an excellent point about mental illness. Not sure I've seen that much discussion on that point here or anywhere but even one of his former platoon mates said (on Fox News, no less) that bergdhal must have had a death wish to do what he did. He went unarmed and unprotected into an active war zone. To me, that suggests a psychotic break of some sort.

I mean, right??

Edited by BklnScott, 09 June 2014 - 05:10 PM.

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#169 Mark

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 05:50 PM

Mark: Yes, I would think anyone intentionally walking into the middle of war zone unarmed, should be considered a bit off-normal to say the least. IF this turns out to be the case...I don't want to let our military get by with issuing him a "discharge other than honorable", because that wouldn't allow him to get the professional mental help he needs upon return to civilian life (as Nonny already pointed out).

At any rate...I'm sure our government carefully considered this situation before taking any action, knowing of the outcry that would occur after-the-fact...especially by Republicans. So, I'd be willing to bet there is much more going on than we (the general public) have, or possibly will be informed of in the future. Also, I know there are some situations that would be better served if everything DIDN'T become public knowledge. I'm not talking about illegal activities people want to push under the carpet with non-disclosure orders. I'm talking about such things as covert ops, or things that would only serve to harm soldiers' (and their families') reputations upon completion of their service to our country.
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#170 243Skunk

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 06:19 PM

View PostBklnScott, on 09 June 2014 - 05:09 PM, said:

Mark, I think that's an excellent point about mental illness. Not sure I've seen that much discussion on that point here or anywhere but even one of his former platoon mates said (on Fox News, no less) that bergdhal must have had a death wish to do what he did. He went unarmed and unprotected into an active war zone. To me, that suggests a psychotic break of some sort.

I mean, right??

I think that is something that needs to be looked at. He might have had some PTSD episode and thought he was on patrol or something when he walked off. I am not sure how it works in terms of flashbacks, but I have heard that they can be quite real.

I think right now the evidence is pointing in the opposite direction, but we need to at least consider the possibility in the name of fairness.

#171 BklnScott

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 06:49 PM

If the opposite direction means he decided the enemy would welcome him with open arms and a puppy party, I would say that's evidence of a break as well.

Unless you think the kid was/is a double agent, nothing else makes sense.

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#172 243Skunk

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 07:11 PM

View PostBklnScott, on 09 June 2014 - 06:49 PM, said:

If the opposite direction means he decided the enemy would welcome him with open arms and a puppy party, I would say that's evidence of a break as well.

Unless you think the kid was/is a double agent, nothing else makes sense.

Immaturity. "These guys are mean! Im leaving! Bye!" Then he could have walked off not realizing that he would be scooped up by the Taliban.

What I am thinking is a complete mental break. I think what you are arguing is that thinking that the Taliban would welcome him is a sign of an illness. I am not willing to go that far, as getting mad and running off is something an immature teenager would do.

#173 Spectacles

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 07:17 PM

^I agree with y'all. The only thing that really makes sense, if you set aside the double agent scenario, is that he snapped and left his unit.

ETA: Snapped because of frustration or because of a breakdown of some kind.

This bit is interesting, if true:

http://transcripts.c.../05/cnr.06.html


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BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN ANCHOR: Big news we are learning. We're learning about some claims here from a local Afghan official who said he was there the night that Bowe Bergdahl was captured. He thinks Bergdahl appeared to be, and I'm quoting, "under the influence of a hallucinogenic substance" minutes before Bowe Bergdahl was beaten and kidnapped by the Taliban.

Let's talk about that with Jim Sciutto, our chief national security correspondent.

Jim, tell me more about this Afghan claim and any proof.

JIM SCIUTTO, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Brooke, this is a fascinating account. This is five years ago he was taken. We all know eyewitness accounts, the passage of time, how that might change peoples' stories. But this someone who our own staff in Kabul spoke to someone who was part of the security response that day, that night, that early morning that Bergdahl disappeared.

A couple of interesting details. One saying he did walk off the base of his own free will, that he was confronted by Afghan villagers and children who found him and said, please, go back, this is not safe. But he didn't speak Pashtu, the local language. They didn't speak English, so he didn't get that message. The local official said it appeared that he was disoriented and possibly under the influence of a hallucinogenic drug. There is a lot of hashish and opium. It is common to see people smoking it.

But then it goes on to something extremely interesting. It says local Taliban fighters came to that village on the backs of motorcycles and they grabbed him, he resisted that, they beat him up, they changed him into local clothes and took him away. This gets to the point, did he volunteer to the Taliban? Was he --

(CROSSTALK)

BALDWIN: Right. Was he seeking that out?

SCIUTTO: This would say, again, if you believe this account from a local official who says he was there that morning, this would then resist that, to say that, yes, he did walk off the base of his own free will but that he was forcibly taken and kidnapped by the Taliban.

BALDWIN: But it still doesn't clear up why he wandered away from that base to begin with, A.

SCIUTTO: It doesn't.

BALDWIN: And, B, what about -- so this is from the Afghan official. What about any kind of U.S. response to these allegations? Do we have anything?

SCIUTTO: We don't yet to this particular account. What U.S. officials have said, and we know this from the first report, the military report that was put together a couple of months after he disappeared, that he had had previous instances of walking off this base of his own free will, but then returning to the base. There was a pattern established there where he would go out. Who knows what he was doing. His colleagues said he would go out to take a closer look -- he talked about walking across the mountains, et cetera. But what this tells you, if you believe this account, is that when he walked out the night that he disappeared that he was taken not because he wanted to be taken but because the Taliban saw an opportunity and took that opportunity and captured him. So it gets to that big question: Was he a deserter or was he someone who just took an irresponsible choice of walking outside the corridor of the U.S. base.



The kid was pretty straight-laced--didn't drink, according to his friends and other members of his unit in the Rolling Stone article. But he was also a dreamer and an adventure-seeker. He may have succumbed to curiosity and tried hash or opium--and if he did too much and wasn't that solid to begin with, it could have facilitated a really bad break with reality. Some people can't handle opioids--even medically prescribed morphine.

Who knows?

But if this guy is to be believed, Bergdahl seemed out of it, whatever the reason.

Edited by Spectacles, 09 June 2014 - 07:18 PM.

"Facts are stupid things." -Ronald Reagan at the 1988 Republican National Convention, attempting to quote John Adams, who said, "Facts are stubborn things"

"Although health care enrollment is actually going pretty well at this point, thousands and maybe millions of Americans have failed to sign up for coverage because they believe the false horror stories they keep hearing." -- Paul Krugman

#174 243Skunk

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 07:41 PM

So the argument becomes: If he was being an immature snot and ran off in a huff, or was smoking dope and wandered off in a dazed state, are these grounds for a dishonerable or less than honerable discharge?

#175 Spectacles

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 07:50 PM

I think so--certainly Other Than Honorable. I don't think either behavior is something the military can afford to ignore.

Another possibility, alluded to above, is underlying mental illness triggered by the stress of deployment in a combat zone. That would be something beyond the guy's choice, therefore not "other than honorable."

It will be interesting to see what we learn about what was going on in his head.
"Facts are stupid things." -Ronald Reagan at the 1988 Republican National Convention, attempting to quote John Adams, who said, "Facts are stubborn things"

"Although health care enrollment is actually going pretty well at this point, thousands and maybe millions of Americans have failed to sign up for coverage because they believe the false horror stories they keep hearing." -- Paul Krugman

#176 Mark

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 07:53 PM

View Post243Skunk, on 09 June 2014 - 07:41 PM, said:

So the argument becomes: If he was being an immature snot and ran off in a huff, or was smoking dope and wandered off in a dazed state, are these grounds for a dishonerable or less than honerable discharge?

Mark: I think both of those scenarios are definite Dishonorable Discharges. No argument there. If he had a mental breakdown...how can he truly be held accountable? Again...none of us know, and probably shouldn't speculate further without some more facts.
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#177 243Skunk

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 08:03 PM

I agree with the PTSD issue. That would be a clear medical issue out of his control.

I dont think it hurts to discuss possibilities, that way were prepared for whatever comes out of it.

#178 BklnScott

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Posted 10 June 2014 - 06:18 AM

View Post243Skunk, on 09 June 2014 - 07:11 PM, said:

View PostBklnScott, on 09 June 2014 - 06:49 PM, said:

If the opposite direction means he decided the enemy would welcome him with open arms and a puppy party, I would say that's evidence of a break as well.

Unless you think the kid was/is a double agent, nothing else makes sense.

Immaturity. "These guys are mean! Im leaving! Bye!" Then he could have walked off not realizing that he would be scooped up by the Taliban.

But that *is* crazy, isn't it? He knew the danger. He'd been living the danger.

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