December 8, 2010 by staff
Bowe Bergdahl, (AP) – Bowe Bergdahl, the only known American soldier held captive in Afghanistan, appeared briefly in a newly released video Taliban standing next to a smiling insurgent commander who once threatened to kill him. The 24 years of Hailey, Idaho, has bags under his eyes and what appears to be an abrasion on his left cheek in the sequences. The video was the fourth to be published since he was captured nearly 18 months and was provided to reporters Wednesday by IntelCenter, a private U.S. following the Islamic extremist activities and communication.
Her parents, Bob and Jani Bergdahl, refused to speak to journalists throughout the ordeal, but the spokesman for the Idaho National Guard Col. Tim Marsano said Wednesday they had confirmed that the man in the video was her son.
“They told me it was him, based on the screenshots,” Marsano said. “It was an extremely difficult year and a half. Without concrete news, every day brings more challenges. They continue to take solace in the support they have received, community, family and friends. ”
Spokesman for NATO Brig. General Josef Blotzer said the coalition was not sure the images were old or new. Bergdahl is seen wearing an Afghan-style, light beige shirt, suggesting that the video was shot during warmer weather.
“We are still investigating this case and we hope Bowe Bergdahl is always very good,” he said.
Bergdahl was detained by the Taliban since June 30, 2009, when he disappeared in Paktika province in eastern Afghanistan.
According to SITE Intelligence Group, which also monitors the activities of Islamic extremists, Bergdahl is standing next to Sangin Zadran, a senior official of al-Qaida linked to Haqqani network Paktika. In July 2009, a spokesman Sangin told The Associated Press in a telephone interview that Berghdal be killed if he ever strikes the United States in the district of Ghazni province and district of Giro Khoshamand Paktika province.
Bergdahl, which is seen in only a few seconds of video that includes a montage of recent militant attacks and events news, nodding from time to time, as if recognition of another speaker, and often looks to the ground .
The video of 69 minutes, produced by Manba al-Jihad, a group of video production Haqqani Network, was published on the website of the Afghan Taliban, December 2, but appeared on jihadist forums last month, according to SITE.
Bergdahl, a member of 1st Battalion, 501st Parachute Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, Fort Richardson, Alaska, has appeared in three other videos that the Taliban issued on July 18, 2009, 25 December 2009 and April 7.
In addition, two NATO service members died Wednesday after an attack by insurgents in southern Afghanistan. The coalition did not disclose their nationalities or details about their deaths. So far this month, 12 members of the NATO coalition in Afghanistan have been killed. At least 671 dead so far this year.
The Afghan Defense Ministry also condemned a coalition airstrike that he said mistakenly killed two Afghan soldiers on Tuesday afternoon. The ministry said in a statement that three Afghan soldiers were wounded in the airstrike in the district Charkh of Logar province in eastern Afghanistan. NATO said it was investigating the incident.
On Tuesday, Afghan soldiers killed a suicide bomber who was plotting an attack against an Afghan army base in Gereshk district of Helmand province in southern Afghanistan, the Afghan Defense Ministry said. The ministry did not disclose details, but NATO has called the incident in a statement released Wednesday evening.
The coalition said that after receiving tips from local residents, a joint coalition force and Afghan forces arrested two suspicious vehicles on a highway infiltration of weapons in the district of Helmand puck.
A suspected insurgent ran from the first vehicle and was arrested by security forces. The second suspected insurgent blew himself up inside the vehicle.
In the second vehicle, a suspected militant jumped out and started shooting and was wounded while another escaped.
Also in the south, a child was killed and two men were injured in the explosion of a homemade bomb in the Shahjoy district of Zabul province, said Mohammad Jan Rasoolyar, spokesman for the provincial governor.
Associated Press writer John Miller in Boise, Idaho, contributed to this report.
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