The parents of a soldier allegedly killed while searching for recently released Taliban prisoner Bowe Bergdahl claim they are “devastated” that they were lied to about their son’s death. In an interview with the Daily Mail, the mother and father of slain hero Darryn Andrews went as far as to say there has been a “cover up just like Benghazi.”
Lt. Andrews’ commanders first reportedly told the parents that their son was killed while hunting a Taliban commander. After Bergdahl was released this weekend, they claim to have learned the truth from members of the military.
Like other soldiers, Andrews reportedly labeled Bergdahl a “deserter” prior to his death. The slain hero’s father, Andy Andrews, told the Daily Mail that “people need to be aware that [Bergdahl] was not a hero and American lives have been lost trying to save this deserter.”
“For his family it’s good to get him back but we will never be able to get our son back because of the actions of this guy,” he said.
Six men, including Andrews, reportedly died in 2009 searching for Bergdahl, the Daily Mail's report states. The Obama administration agreed to trade five Guantanamo Bay prisoners in exchange for Bergdahl over the weekend, a controversial decision that has sparked a fiery debate on negotiating with terrorists.
According to the Associated Press, a 2010 Pentagon investigation concluded that Bergdahl walked away from his unit, leading to a decision by the military not to “exert extraordinary efforts to rescue him.” The report is based on information from a former defense official who was involved in the situation.
FILE - This file image provided by IntelCenter on Wednesday Dec. 8, 2010 shows a frame grab from a video released by the Taliban containing footage of a man believed to be Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, left. The nearly five-year effort to free the only American soldier held captive in Afghanistan is scattered among numerous federal agencies with a loosely organized group of people working on it mostly part time, according to two members of Congress and military officials involved in the effort. An ever-shrinking U.S. military presence in Afghanistan has re-focused attention on efforts to bring home Bergdahl, who has been held by the Taliban since June 30, 2009. (AP Photo/IntelCenter, File)
President Barack Obama walks with Jani Bergdahl, left, and her husband Bob Bergdahl, right after he spoke about the release of their son, U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, Saturday, May 31, 2014. Bergdahl, 28, had been held prisoner by the Taliban since June 30, 2009. He was handed over to U.S. special forces by the Taliban in exchange for the release of five Afghan detainees held by the United States. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)
Andy Andrews told the Daily Mail that the military did not mention that his son was killed while searching for Bergdahl, but after his release, several soldiers who served with Andrews in Afghanistan emailed him to tell him what really happened.
“The soldiers said they had to sign a letter saying that they would not discuss this,” the father said. “I have no way of proving that apart from what they said. We cannot tell you how devastated we are that the government would do this. They lied to us.”
“It’s a big cover-up like Benghazi, just like everything Obama has done. We want the truth to come out,” he added.
A soldier who fought in Bergdahl's platoon in Afghanistan, Sgt. Evan Buetow, recently said in a radio interview that Bergdahl made a "premeditated" decision to desert his post and meet with the enemy.
"I don't want him treated as the example soldiers should look up to, because he's the exact opposite of that," Buetow said.
Read the Daily Mail’s full report here.