May
31
2014

Three things about this Bowe Bergdahl / Taliban prisoners swap.

Short version:  Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl was captured by the Taliban in 2009.  Today, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel reported that the US government had made arrangements via the government of Qatar to exchange five Taliban terrorists held at Gitmo for Sgt. Bergdahl. The swap was duly made and Sgt. Bergdahl is now on his way home.

I say the following fully respecting the fact that Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl*and his family/loved ones might have an extremely understandably different opinion on the situation:

  1. The people we exchanged for Sgt. Bergdahl will end up running terrorist operations in Afghanistan if we’re lucky, and Afghanistan and abroad if we are not. And they will likely be doing it considerably sooner than a year from now.
  2. The Taliban will step up their kidnapping campaigns, because from their point of view said campaigns have been proven to work.
  3. Democratic, liberal, and progressive partisans will freak if you point out either #1 or #2 to them.  That particularly smarmy freaking that the more obnoxious examples do when they think that they’ve got the moral drop on you.

It’s a heck of a thing when your only hope is Maybe they put a remote tracker in one guy’s gut or some other techno-thriller nonsense.  Unfortunately, no, this is not a Tom Clancy novel and we do not have a Jack Ryan in office.  And I’m sorry that I have to be the one that gets to tell people hard truths like Rewarding kidnapping gets more people kidnapped.  But apparently telling people the things that they don’t want to hear is part of the entire ‘Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy’ thing.

Moe Lane (crosspost)

PS: The Daily Beast (via Hot Air) has a list of the people that we traded.  …We gave up some bad people in exchange for Sgt. Bergdahl.  Ethnic cleansers, military leaders, drug lords; to its credit, the Beast seems almost as apprehensive about this move as I am.  But check out their comments section for some prime examples of #3.

*I’m glad he’s home safe, and I wouldn’t blame him in the slightest if Sgt. Bergdahl chooses to focus on that fact.  But SecDef Hagel clearly wanted the man released in the worst way; we know this because Hagel pretty much chose the worst way to get him freed…

9 Comments

  • jetty says:

    I imagine that the Obama WH is figuring out how to, um, err. safely get enough Americans kidnapped so that they can empty Gitmo.
    .
    And yes, I’m serious.

    • garfieldjl says:

      I hate to say this, but there is a good chance you’re probably right.

      • Herp McDerp says:

        Various people have speculated that the Benghazi clusterfrak was the bungled result of a plan to have our ambassador kidnapped and held for ransom, to allow him to be traded for high-value Gitmo detainees. But our clever, patriotic president would never be party to a scheme like that … would he?

  • midwestconservative says:

    Uhm, there is a lot of controversy, and this whole incident should be revisited in a couple of weeks when more info comes out. But IF the rumours are true ( and they can be false) then we may have just traded 5 hard core terrorists for a ‘Bradley manning’

  • Subotai Bahadur says:

    Add #4. As has become the standard operating procedure, Obama broke Federal law by releasing the Gitmo detainees. There is a Federal law in effect requiring that the president give Congress at least 30 days notice before moving any Guantanamo inmates elsewhere. I believe [but could be wrong] that this law was passed by the Democrats to keep the evil George Bush from moving the poor, abused inmates to a location outside congressional control.

    It would not be a Democrat action if it did not break the law in the process.

    • Herp McDerp says:

      As long as the House refrains from impeaching him or the Senate refuses to convict him, the President can literally commit any crime, including murder, and be immune from prosecution. The President has the power to pardon himself — and anyone else — entirely at his own discretion.

      • Freddie Sykes says:

        Since the Senate will never convict, it would be a distraction for the House to impeach. How about the House passes a bill to censure Obama and see where that goes?

      • Subotai Bahadur says:

        Exactly. Now, what is the practical difference, other than how much velvet glove currently and temporarily covers the mailed fist; between our current situation and a dictatorship?

  • Cameron says:

    I admit to being mildly conflicted on all this.
    .
    1. Bergdahl is one of ours. Even if it’s true that he left his post in Afghanistan “to go find himself,” getting him back is the right thing to do.
    .
    2. Yes, it’s abhorrent that we traded five scumbags for him. It should have been one for one.
    .
    3. I would have preferred no trades but I’m smart enough to know that this Administration would fret more about hurting people’s feelings than try to conduct any kind of rescue.

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