Former Army Specialist Joshua Cornelison — who was present at the Army observation post the night of Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl’s disappearance — rejected National Security Advisor Susan Rice’s claim that Berghdal “with honor and distinction,” retorting that “he did not serve with any honor” and that he “absolutely, 100 percent deserted his post.”
Cornelison spoke Wednesday with MSNBC’s Tamron Hall about his personal experience surrounding Bergdahl’s disappearance from his Afghanistan base in 2009 and what the Army Specialist thinks of the ongoing debate surrounding the circumstances of his capture.
“You’ve concluded that he is a deserter without this final investigation?” Hall asked. “I say that, because obviously you have people who are saying his mental health was fragile, there could have been other circumstances that we are not aware of as to why he left his post, allegedly, that day under his own will.”
“He absolutely, 100 percent deserted his post, without any shadow of a doubt,” Cornelison declared. “He intentionally left his duty station in our OP.”
“So you’ve reached your conclusion then?” Hall pressed.
“Absolutely,” the Army Specialist replied confidently. “I was there for when he actually left. I was at the OP the night before when he was there. I was there the morning when we woke up and Bergdahl was missing. We still had his weapon, we had his body armor, we had his sensitive equipment. We had no Bergdahl. The only option is that he walked away.”
Cornelison also deliberately called out some of the excuses being peddled by administration officials and their apologists regarding Bergdahl’s service and time in captivity — although he refused to directly identify his targets.
“Certain people are defending Bowe Bergdahl in certain circumstances,” he noted, “that he’s already spent five years in captivity, more than enough. And you know, that he was a brave soldier and ‘served with honor and distinction.'”
“And that’s absolutely false,” he asserted. “He purposely and willfully walked away, and he is not a hero. He did not serve with any honor and he did not serve with any respect to his platoon, to his unit, to his Army. He’s a deserter, and there are true heroes who have died in Afghanistan looking for him.”
Cornelison was almost certainly referencing National Security Advisor Susan Rice, whose declaration on Sunday that Berghdahl “served with honor and distinction” looks increasingly flimsy as more information leaks out on the Army Sgt’s highly dishonorable behavior.