The Slatest

Bowe Bergdahl Has Not Seen or Spoken to His Parents Since Being Freed Six Weeks Ago

President Obama walks with the parents of Bowe Bergdahl.

Photo by J.H. Owen-Pool/Getty Images

The disappearance of Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl in Afghanistan remains shrouded in mystery—as does the nearly five years he was held in captivity by the Taliban. Six weeks after returning to the U.S., the Army announced on Monday the soldier—still under investigation about the circumstances of his 2009 disappearance—has returned to active duty after completing a “reintegration process.” Unexpectedly, that integration process has not included seeing or speaking to his parents despite their repeated attempts to reach out to him, the Wall Street Journal reports.


The news that Bergdahl has refused to speak to his parents is an unexpected plot twist in a story already full of hairpin turns. Both of Bergdahl’s parents stood beside President Obama in the Rose Garden of the White House when it was announced their son was coming home in May. Also, as the Journal points out, “Bergdahl’s father, Robert Bergdahl, emerged as a fierce advocate for his son during the five years that Sgt. Bergdahl was held in Pakistan by the Haqqani Network, pushing for action to get his son released.”

Here’s more from the Journal:

Sgt. Bergdahl has refused to see his parents or speak to them on the phone, the official said. The decision by Sgt. Bergdahl, who returned to regular duty on Monday, suggests a deeper estrangement between the soldier and his parents than the military understood when he was released. Still, officials said, they don’t know the precise cause of the tension or when it began.