Bergdahl could net $350K tax-free, still no contact with ‘Rose Garden’ parents

Now that U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl is returning to active duty, he could receive as much as $350,000 in tax-free retroactive pay if an investigation clears him of desertion.

Bergdahl is due approximately $200,000 in pay for the five years he was held by the Taliban. If the Army’s investigation determines he was a prisoner of war, he could collect another $150,000, according to Fox News.

Tax rules exempt active-duty pay while in a combat zone, Fox News reported, quoting Department of Defense rules that also exempt taxes on payments to former captives.

Photo: CNN

Bergdahl has been assigned a desk job in the protocol office at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, where he will assist other soldiers and guests visiting the base. While he appears to be returning to a normal life, he still hasn’t spoken to or visited his parents, according to The Wall Street Journal.

The soldier’s parents, Robert and Jani Bergdahl, have not attempted to visit their son, either,
according to multiple media reports. The couple stood with President Obama in May when
he announced the pending prisoner trade, but questions soon arose about the family after Robert Bergdahl spoke in Arabic, reciting a Muslim prayer that praised Allah.

While the family appears to be fractured, officials are uncertain about the depth of the estrangement or when it began, The Wall Street Journal reported, adding that the family has declined to answer questions about the situation.

Related: Bowe Bergdahl set to return to active duty this week


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