Bergdahl: What Would General George Washington Do?


It seems clear to me what George Washington would do about Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl.

Punitive Articles of the UCMJ

Article 85—Desertion

“(a) Any member of the armed forces who—

(1) without authority goes or remains absent from his unit, organization, or place of duty with intent to remain away therefrom permanently;

(2) quits his unit, organization, or place of duty with intent to avoid hazardous duty or to shirk important service; or

(3) without being regularly separated from one of the armed forces enlists or accepts an appointment in the same or another one of the armed forces without fully disclosing the fact that he has not been regularly separated, or enters any foreign armed service except when authorized by the United States Note: This provision has been held not to state a separate offense by the United States Court of Military Appeals in United States v. Huff, 7 U.S.C.M.A. 247, 22 C.M.R. 37 (1956), is guilty of desertion.

(b) Any commissioned officer of the armed forces who, after tender of his resignation and before notice of its acceptance, quits his post or proper duties without leave and with intent to remain away therefrom permanently is guilty of desertion.

(c) Any person found guilty of desertion or attempt to desert shall be punished, if the offense is committed in time of war, by death or such other punishment as a court-martial may direct, but if the desertion or attempt to desert occurs at any other time, by such punishment, other than death, as a court-martial may direct.”

  • Washington would query those closest to the scene, a number of whom have accused Bergdahl of desertion.
  • He would then convene a court-martial without delay or hesitation.
  • If Bergdahl is found guilty by the military court-martial, it is likely they would impose the death penalty.
  • If the death penalty is directed, then the execution would be carried out without delay or hesitation.
  • A military commander, and especially the Commander in Chief, owes such swift justice to the soldiers, sailors, Marines and airmen under his command. Anything less is dereliction of duty (the shameful failure to fulfill one’s obligations) and the Commander in Chief should be removed without delay or hesitation.

 

Don Johnson – June 2014

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