Bergdahl spared from prison, Trump calls sentence 'disgrace'

Judge rules no jail time for Bergdahl

Sgt Bergdahl was held captive by the Taliban for five years after he left his Afghan post in 2009, sparking a massive manhunt in the region.

Bergdahl had pleaded guilty to desertion and misbehavior before the enemy and had faced up to life in prison.

Bergdahl's lawyers tried several times to have the charges against him thrown out, saying comments by Trump and Senator John McCain in favor of a heavy prison sentence constituted "unlawful command influence" - when senior officials with power over the military exert potentially prejudicial influence over the court.

In court, Bergdahl appeared tense, grimaced and clenched his jaw.

Prosecutors acknowledged that Bergdahl suffered during his years as a prisoner of the Taliban, but argued that did not diminish the pain of fellow service members who were injured during the futile hunt for him.

The case inflamed U.S. political divisions over the Afghan war, with supporters calling Bergdahl a victim of the 16-year-old conflict and detractors labelling him a turncoat whose action led to severe injuries of fellow soldiers in his unit on search missions for him. "Ok, whoop-de-doo", Morita said in a phone interview.

"The decision on Sergeant Bergdahl is a complete and total disgrace to our Country and to our Military", the president wrote.

Set your clocks back an hour as Daylight Saving Time ends
Hawaii does not observe Daylight Saving Time and neither does Arizona (although the Navajo Nation, in northeastern Arizona, does). By "falling back", we'll see more daylight in the morning but that also means it will get darker earlier.

Actress Paz de la Huerta alleges Weinstein raped her twice
Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina Jolie are among the actresses to accuse Weinstein of sexual harassment, while Rose McGowan said he raped her.

Protests Erupt in Catalonia After Former Leaders Are Jailed
The prosecutor has asked the National Court judge to issue an global arrest warrant against them. The request also covers four other dismissed Catalan ministers who did not show up.

Trump's statement came in a tweet about 90 minutes after the sentencing. Jeffery R. Nance ruled that Bergdahl's rank be reduced from sergeant to E1 as well as being docked $1,000 from his pay for the next 10 months.

During the multiday sentencing hearing, Bergdahl testified that he was sorry for the wounds suffered by searchers.

President Donald Trump, whose campaign-trail criticism loomed over the case, quickly called the sentence a "disgrace".

But Captain Nina Banks, for the defence, said that when he deserted Bergdahl had not yet been diagnosed with schizotypal personality disorder, which includes grandiose thinking. Justin Oshana, said during closing arguments Thursday that Bergdahl "does not have a monopoly on suffering as a result of his choices".

"We're exhausted of Sgt. Bergdahl, who's a traitor, a no-good traitor, who should have been executed", Trump said at an October 2015 rally, for example.

The 31-year-old soldier from Hailey, Idaho, was brought home by Obama in 2014 in a swap for five Taliban prisoners held at Guantanamo Bay. Dahl also said that putting Bergdahl in prison after all he had been through at the hands of the Haqqani group would be "inappropriate".

Republicans roundly criticised Mr Obama, and Mr Trump went further while campaigning for the presidency, repeatedly calling Bergdahl a traitor who deserved serious punishment.

Related:

Comments

Latest news

Israel launches airstrikes in Syria, targets weapons factory
If the reports are confirmed, this would be the fifth time Israel has exchanged fire with Syria in the past month. On Wednesday, Israel's Channel 10 said the aircraft were not hit and returned safely to base.

This Japanese company is offering nonsmokers extra vacation days
After the offer was announced in September, four employees made a decision to give up smoking, the company said. Despite the policy's recent introduction, 30 of the company's 120 employees have already taken advantage.

Gas prices should be low right now but continue to rise
Some refiners postponed scheduled maintenance as hurricane Harvey approached, now that maintenance and some repairs are underway. Patrick DeHaan from www.gasbuddy.com is warning prices at the pump could soon rise in MI to $2.99 a gallon.

India falls to 108 on World Economic Forum's gender gap index
New Zealand is among the top ten nations in the world when it comes to gender equality , according to a new global report . She added that the history of Islam had many examples of powerful women who played a full part in business and society.

Qualcomm sues Apple for breach of software license contract
Qualcomm has not alleged that Intel chips violate its patents but claims that the way Apple implements them in the iPhone does. Still, these results are a reflection of the toll that the legal battle between Qualcomm and Apple is taking.

The worst has been confirmed true about Texans QB Deshaun Watson's injury
Mike Garafolo of the NFL Network now confirms that Watson's ACL is torn, bringing his rookie campaign to a close. Watson went down on a non-contact injury, while running a read-option play, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter .

National Australia Bank breaks profit record, plans headcount drop
The bank this morning posted a statutory net profit of $5.3 billion for FY17, with cash earnings up 2.5 per cent to $6.6 billion. At the close of the market in Sydney, NAB shares were down 2.8% at A$31.95.

HTC could make a serious comeback with the HTC U11 Plus
Although we're impressed with the design of the U11 Life , it's the specs on offer that really show why it's a lot cheaper. The U11+ will ship with Android 8.0 Oreo and HTC Sense, and both Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa will be pre-installed.

Macon dentist dishes out dollars for candy
Along with candy, the dentist office will also be sending dental kits and letters of appreciation to the USA troops. Operation Gratitude started encouraging dental offices to collect Halloween candy to send to the troops in 2007.

Japanese man arrested after parts of nine bodies found in home
The suspect told police he dismembered the bodies in the bathroom after killing the persons. The residence of Takahiro Shiraishi in the city of Zama, southwest of Tokyo, on Tuesday.

Iran's Khamenei says Moscow, Tehran cooperation can isolate US
The two generals met in Tehran as part of efforts for expansion of military cooperation between the two countries. Earlier in the day, Putin sat down for talks with his Iranian counterpart, Hassan Rouhani.

Samsung Galaxy S8 Android Oreo Beta: How to Get + What's New
Thankfully, it looks like Samsung is getting ready to test the latest version of Android on the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus. Samsung starts rolling out Android security patch for the month of October on its Galaxy J3 (2017).

Tesla is trading down ahead of Wednesday's earnings report
Last month, Tesla reported it delivered 26,150 vehicles in the third quarter, a 4.5 percent rise on the same period of 2016. Shares of far larger automaker General Motors have climbed about 23 percent, while Ford shares are up almost 2 percent.

Explosion At NTPC Power Plant In Uttar Pradesh; 4 dead, 100 injured
Previously, this plant was run by Uttar Pradesh state electricity board but was taken over by the NTPC a couple of years back. A National Disaster Response Force team has also been sent to help with the rescue efforts.

Osweiler Named Starting QB By Broncos
Siemian has thrown six interceptions in the past three games combined as opponents have turned those six picks into 17 points. Osweiler made a name for himself by going 5-2 with the Broncos back in 2015 after Peyton Manning went down with an injury.

Other news