U.S. military has new video of captive Idaho soldier Bowe Bergdahl
WASHINGTON (KBOI) - U.S. officials say they have received a new video of captured U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl of Hailey, but the video has not been released to the public and the government has not indicated if it intends to do so.
CNN's Chief National Security Correspondent Jim Sciutto in Washington, D.C. was briefed on the video by Defense Department officials with knowledge of its content, and Sciutto told KBOI News there are references that indicate the video was made a month ago.
Sciutto said he was told the Idaho native appeared to be in diminished health. "The senior Defense Department official said it didn't appear (Bergdahl) was on death's door, but he appeared less well than when we last saw him in that video released in February 2011," Sciutto said.
A senior defense official says the video came to light several days ago, but there were no other details.
Bergdahl was 23 when he was taken prisoner in Afghanistan on June 30, 2009. It is believed he is being held somewhere in Pakistan by the Taliban-aligned Haqqani network.
The Taliban have said they would free Bergdahl in exchange for several of their most senior operatives who are being detained at the U.S. detention facility in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba
Col. Tim Marsano of the Idaho Naitonal Guard talked with the family and he said they are optimistic now that they know he's still alive.
"It's a glass half full type of event," said Col. Marsano. "It's dismaying that their son is still being held in captivity over four years later. But a video showing that he was alive just a couple of weeks ago has certainly got to be the highlight of their day."
On Wednesday, The Idaho National Guard also released a statement from Bowe's family:
"Today we learned that a new video of our son, U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, has been distributed by his captors. "Naturally, this is very important to us and our resolve to continue our efforts to bring Bowe home as soon as possible."
"As we have done so many times over the past 4 and a half years, we request his captors to release him safely so that our only son can be reunited with his mother and father."
"BOWE - If (you) see this, continue to remain strong through patience. Your endurance will carry you to the finish line. Breathe!"
Bergdahl is the only American soldier in captivity.
(CNN and The Associated Press contributed to this report.)