Episodes 7&8

Hindsight Part 1 and 2

From what you learned from these two episodes, was Bergdahl fit for service in the US Army? Why or why not?

Before Bergdahl signed with the army, he was struggling with self-identity and psychiatric disorders. Based on the incident in the Coast Guard boot camp as well as his tendencies to hide mental well-being, I do not think Bergdahl was a good fit for the US Army. He could not handle stress at the boot camp, which makes it clear he was not equipped to manage the stress that comes with the army. Furthermore, the Coast Guard episode overwhelmed him to a great extent, and he ended up getting admitted to a hospital. The doctors there diagnosed him with adjustment disorder with depression. I think before he entered the army, he should have met with a competent psychiatrist and received the treatments he needed. Furthermore, his family and friends did not want him to join. It was apparent his decision to join the army was a bad one because there is a great possibility that it resulted in his hostage experience. However, he wanted to become an ideal fantasy soldier that only exists in textbooks and movies.  

Briefly describe your own code of ethics.  

As a Muslim woman, there are plenty of codes of ethics I was told to never break such as honesty, modesty, and respect. However, the one that personally motivates me to do better each day is never putting myself or someone else in harm’s way. It is the most important principle I identify with, and it has had a great influence on my life thus far. For example, when I was twelve years old, a loved one was in a car accident, and the consequences of the aftermath turned me from ever learning how to drive a car. At the moment, I am 22 years old, and I do not have a license. All my friends do, but I never had the urge to get behind the wheels and endanger myself or someone else. Thinking back, I know I was afraid to attempt to learn because of the fear I have. However, I now realize I cannot live in this world and not drive a vehicle. I understand it is possible, but it is also super bothersome too.  

What do you believe should be the overarching code of ethics for the U.S. military? Do you believe that this code was violated by Bergdahl’s recruitment after the incident in the Coast Guard?

I think no matter the situation, an important sector of our government should never relax its policies because more soldiers are needed. If they hire individuals who are experiencing mental disorders or struggles, they should not hold them accountable for what results. In Bergdahl’s situation, it was clear he was struggling with something profound. It surpasses his unique way of thinking about the world, but he was also not 100% okay. People around him witnessed him unravel and become more paranoid. His perspective and reasoning why he left his post could have truth behind it. However, it is overshadowed by what transpired. In the end, he should not be solely responsible for how the events played out.

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