By Claudette Roulo
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, April 24, 2014 – Claims of a lack of coordination inside the Defense Department made by anonymous officials in media reports regarding the handling of a recent proof-of-life video of Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl are “completely false,” Pentagon spokesman Army Col. Steve Warren said today.
“They mischaracterize the ongoing close coordination and teamwork within this department and with other U.S. government agencies,” Warren said.
Bergdahl has been missing for too long, the colonel added. There should be “no doubt” that the department is using all the military, intelligence and diplomatic tools at its disposal to bring him home safely.
Bergdahl, now 28, was found missing from his duty station in eastern Afghanistan June 30, 2009, and was declared missing/captured three days later. He is believed to be held by members of the Haqqani network.
“I can tell you, across the spectrum, diplomatically, militarily, even from an intelligence perspective, we’ve never lost focus on Bowe Bergdahl … and on trying to get him home,” Pentagon Press Secretary Navy Rear Adm. John Kirby said during a January 16 news conference, held the day after the proof-of-life video was released.
“It is important to underscore that the reason Sgt. Bergdahl remains a captive is because he's being held by terrorists, not because of a lack of effort or coordination by the United States government,” Warren said.
“Anyone who does leak this level of detail, in my opinion, does not have the interests or safety of Bowe Bergdahl in mind,” he added.