Fox News host Shepherd Smith provided a counterpoint to his own network’s coverage of the release of American POW Bowe Bergdahl, in footage posted by Media Matters on Wednesday.
“If you desert or commit treason, you have to be proved to have done so,” Smith said on his show on Tuesday. “We can’t just decide because some people come on television and yakety yak, and we’ve got a report of this and a report of that and that’s what happened. As the Army said, as the Pentagon said, you bring them home. You bring them home first, and then you investigate.”
The video shows that while several of his colleagues were quick to label Bergdahl — who was released by the Taliban this past Saturday as part of an agreement with the U.S. — as a “deserter,” Smith called for a more thorough look into his five-year imprisonment.
If Bergdahl really did learn to speak the pashto language and became disillusioned with the U.S. war against Afghanistan, Smith said, he would not have been alone, arguing that he is still an American soldier “until otherwise proven so.”
“An investigation has to happen,” Smith said. “I’m kind of disgusted by all these people who want to pre-judge, one way or another, what happened here.”
Watch the contrast in the coverage of Bergdahl’s case, as posted by Media Matters, below.