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Politics & Government
00000176-d8fc-dce8-adff-faff728f0003Bowe Bergdahl was born on March 28, 1986 to Bob and Jani Bergdahl in Sun Valley, Idaho. Bowe was raised in neighboring Hailey, Idaho, where his parents still live.On June 30, 2009, then 23-year-old Bowe Bergdahl is widely reported to have walked off his Army base in Afghanistan. Less than a month later, the Washington Post reports, Bergdahl appeared in the first of several Taliban-affiliated videos. In it, Bergdahl "says he was captured after lagging behind during a patrol," writes the Post.Here's a timeline of events.May 2008: Bergdahl enlists in the U.S. ArmyJune 30, 2009: Bergdahl reported missingJuly 2, 2009: CNN reports a U.S. military official says Bergdahl is being held by the clan of warlord Siraj Haqqani.July 18, 2009: The Taliban posts a video of Bergdahl.Dec. 25, 2009: Bergdahl's captor's release a second video of the solider.April 7, 2010: The Washington Post reports that the Taliban "posts a video showing Bergdahl pleading to be sent home and saying the war in Afghanistan is not worth the human cost."June 2010: The U.S. Army promotes Bergdahl to specialist.Dec. 7, 2010: CNN reports Bergdahl's captors release a 45-minute video showing a thinner soldier.Feb. 2011: Bergdahl's captors release another video.May 6, 2011: Bergdahl's father, Bob, posts a YouTube video asking for his son's release.June 16, 2011: The U.S. Army promotes Bergdahl to sergeant.May 9, 2012: Bob and Jani Bergdahl give an interview to the New York Times. The Bergdahls say the U.S. government is engaged in secret negotiations with the Taliban over a possible prisoner swap.June 6, 2013: Bergdahl’s family announces that “through the International Committee of the Red Cross, we recently received a letter we’re confident was written to us by our son.”Jan. 15, 2014: Bergdahl's captors release a proof-of-life video. Still unreleased publicly, the video reportedly shows Bergdahl in declining health.Feb. 23, 2014: The Taliban says it suspended prisoner-swap talks with the United States government.April 24, 2014: The U.S. government says prisoner-swap talks aren't disorganized. May 31, 2014: The U.S. government announces Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl was released by his captors in exchange for five U.S. detainees held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.March 25, 2015: Following a U.S. Military investigation, the Army announced Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl will be charged with desertion, avoiding military service, and misbehavior before the enemy.This information was compiled from various media reports including The New York Times, Washington Post, CNN, The Associated Press, Northwest News Network.

Oscar Winner Shields Bergdahl Interviews From U.S. Lawyers

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AP
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Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl is seen leaving a courtroom after a pretrial hearing in Fort Bragg, NC., Monday, Nov. 14, 2016.

The federal government dropped its efforts to seize hours of unaired interviews an Oscar-winning screenwriter recorded with Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, his lawyer said Tuesday.

Mark Boal had sued the government to block a military prosecutor who threatened to subpoena 25 hours of interviews for possible use at Bergdahl's court-martial for abandoning his post in Afghanistan in 2009.

Boal, who won two Academy Awards as producer and screenwriter for the Iraq war drama "The Hurt Locker," asserted his First Amendment right as a journalist to maintain confidentiality of sources and other information. Boal reported on the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

"I'm happy that the Army ultimately agreed to uphold the traditions of a free civilian press," Boal said in a statement.

The recordings formed the basis for the second season of the popular podcast "Serial" that focused on Bergdahl's decision to desert and his five years in captivity with the Taliban and its allies.

But the majority of unedited recordings never aired, and Boal said they included confidential discussions and material never meant to be public.

In return for the government dropping its efforts to get the records, Boal will verify material that aired on the podcast if called to testify at Bergdahl's court-martial in North Carolina, attorney Jean-Paul Jassy said. Boal will also drop his demand for attorney fees.

A Justice Department spokeswoman confirmed the case was resolved, but said they had no further comment.

A court filing Tuesday showed the case was dismissed, though Jassy said it actually was settled Dec. 6.

Boal's lawsuit was supported by the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, other journalism groups, nonprofits and major media companies, including The Associated Press.

"We supported this lawsuit because it sent a very strong message about aggressively defending rights under the First Amendment," said Bruce Brown, executive director of the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press. "That message was heard and received. The resulting settlement protects newsgathering and confidential communications with sources. This is a great outcome."

At a hearing in Los Angeles federal court in September, Jassy asked a judge to issue an order blocking release of the recordings. He said it was unprecedented for a military prosecutor to subpoena a civilian reporter.

Government lawyers, however, claimed the lawsuit to pre-emptively block a subpoena was premature. They also said Boal should first have to challenge a subpoena in military courts and return to federal court only if those efforts failed.

At the judge's suggestion, the two sides entered into settlement discussions before a magistrate judge.

Bergdahl, of Hailey, Idaho, faces a military trial in April on charges of desertion and misbehavior before the enemy. Conviction on the latter charge carries a possible term of life in prison.

Bergdahl is seeking a pardon from President Barack Obama.

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