WASHINGTON, July 10, 2014 —
A photo published on Twitter yesterday that appears to show Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl with a senior Taliban commander is 100-percent propaganda, Pentagon spokesman Army Col. Steve Warren said today.
“He was a captive for five years. So, pictures that the Haqqani Network or the Taliban release are 100-percent propaganda and should be viewed that way,” Warren said.
The Twitter account that posted the photo is one allegedly affiliated with the Taliban and al-Qaida. The photo, which has yet to be verified, shows Bergdahl with Badruddin Haqqani, the son of Haqqani Network leader Jalaludin Haqqani.
According to Pakistani officials, Badruddin was killed in an airstrike in 2012.
“These are bad people, these are terrorists, these are thugs and these are killers who captured an American service member and held him for half a decade,” Warren said.
Bergdahl, who was released in May, is in the penultimate phase of the reintegration process at Brooke Army Medical Center at Fort Sam Houston, Texas, the colonel said.
“With every day he's continuing his progress, he's continuing his reintegration and we look forward to the time when he completes Phase Three and moves on the final phase, which is returning to an Army unit,” Warren said.
There is no set timeline for the reintegration process, as each person’s experiences in captivity vary, defense officials have said.
(Follow Claudette Roulo on Twitter: @roulododnews)