Episode 5: Meanwhile, in Tampa

The main governmental actor in the U.S that assisted with finding Bowe Bergdahl was the Personnel Recovery team  of the U.S. Central Command or CENTCOM. It is their  duty is to find any person who goes missing in a conflict zone.  Even after the DUSTWUN ended, members of the team worked to find Bowe for years. However, the efforts of CENTCOM weren’t enough to ensure his return…It had to be the effort of an agency much bigger, the CIA, or the President of the United States.

Should families of captives have the right to negotiate with captors ?

During the time period of Bowe’s capture, the U.S government was preoccupied with other major events that occurred. Therefore, they couldn’t divert much of their attention to a hostage …a hostage that abandoned his military base. With that being said, I do believe Bowe’s family had the right to contact captors. They were desperate, received little help from the government, and they were determined to get a loved back by any means necessary. How could you blame them?

However, for future cases, I do believe there should be some sort of regulation from the government for the families’  safety if they decide to reach out to captors. Especially, if a ransom is negotiated. We must ensure the safety of this nation as well.


Episode 4: The Captors


Some things I learned about the Taliban in this episode:


  • The Taliban is highly organized militant group. They have established public works systems such as; roads and basic healthcare.
  • This group also has a network called Haqqani, which is based in Pakistan and they work closely with the Pakistani army and maintain order within the society.
  • Local families  help to assist the Taliban with harboring captives in their homes for a time being.
  • The Taliban views ANYONE who does not follow their strict interpretation of Islam as bad.

What is the Taliban ? Its Goals?

The Taliban is a group of organized crime that is comprised of a strong central command force and other networks. The Taliban works to expand its military and influence over ranges of territory. Hence, it’s connections with the Haqqanis in Pakistan. It also works to gain recognition and a reputation for its heinous crimes against humanity.

Cultural Perspective

In this episode, some members of the Taliban deemed the  journalist as impure and unclean because he was an American. They couldn’t stand to be around him at some point and attributed is sickness to his dissimilarity of their beliefs. However, there was one older man who encouraged the younger commanders to treat the journalist with  respect because it was the way of the Prophet Muhammad. Immediately, the thought that the possibility of humanity within the Taliban came to mind.(lol)

My understanding of the War on Terror

In school, I was always taught that the instability and hostility in the Middle East was due to religious differences…which is partially true. However, the west has imposed its influence on societies throughout the Middle East for years through “globalization” .Towards the end of the episode, Bowe describes one commander’s remarks and treatment of him to be contributed to the resentment he had for America…and what America had done to Afghanistan. Terrorist actions cannot be justified but perhaps understood.





Episode 3: Escape

In this episode Bergdahl  faces with the challenge of surviving.  Obeying the Taliban’s orders or following the United States military’s, code of conduct. The map of the focus (OP Mest, FOB Sharana, and all surrounding states), indicates that the easten command post was closest to Pakistan…which meant reaching northern Waziristan would not take that long.  In a phone call between Bergdalh and the film maker, he states that he was sometimes held by members of the Haqqani network that happens to work in Pakistan as well. Although Bergdahl is uncertain about his whereabouts, we can conclude that there is a high possibility that he had already reached Pakistan.

Episode 2: The Golden Chicken

The LLIV was a great way for the military to gather intel about Berdgahl’s possible whereabouts. It allowed the to obtain conversations from anyone who were aware of his capture.

The WikiLeaks War Diaries vividly depited every event that occured during the day Berdgahl disappered and days beyond that as well. For example, “At 0430Z, TF 1 Geronimo reported a B Co missing soldier after he did not show up for the 0900L morning roll call at Mest OP, grid 42SVB 59236 47877 Yahya Khail District, Paktika. A full search was ordered. At 0535Z, TF 1 Geronimo initiated DUSTWUN procedures for the missing soldier. At 0645Z, all remaining units had reported in 100% accountability. Geronimo TOC ordered blocking positions set in and around Mest OP. At 0707Z, Predator (VooDoo) was on station in support. At 0940Z, a Pathfinder and tracking dog team arrived at Mest OP in support. At 0945Z, Predator (Pfingston) arrived on station in support. At 1012Z, LLVI receives traffic that an American Soldier with a camera is looking for someone who speaks English. ”

As you can see , the diaries coincide with the infirmation we are told on Serial 2.  Continue reading “Episode 2: The Golden Chicken”

Episode 1 : DUSTWUN

In this episode of the podcast, Serial 2, we learn that a young soldier, Bowe Bergdahl, left his post in the night of Afganistan to bring awareness to an issue. The leadership in the military deeply concerned Bergdahl. Thus, his bold attempt for change…by creating a DUSTWIN. As Bergdahl wondered through the nights, he was caught by the Taliban and held captive for five brutal years.

After listening to the podcast, I realized Bergdahl is absolutely INSANE. He literally put himself and others in danger because he felt the only way to bring about some sort of change was to go awal, get captured for five whole years by a notorious terrorist group, and endure torturous conditions.  Did he not realize the hard time he could be facing if and when the U. S. Military rescued him? In order for me to fully understand his decision, I need to know if he even remotely considered the affects that  his decision would have on the US Military, other people, other and factors.

Bergdahl’s plan was to reach FOB Sharana within 24 hours of his leave. After watching  a 52 second video that showed the terrain he had to cover in order to reach his destination, I concluded that he would have had a hard time getting there because of the rugged ground, tall hills(possibly mountains), and the extensive river. It was an impossible goal that I would not have been able to acheive simply because of the terrain, lack of physical stamina, and the short time period.