Ollie North Criticizes Obama Prisoner Swap

My first thought when I read about President Obama swapping prisoners with the Taliban — honestly, my very first thought — was “I can’t wait for Ollie North to attack him for negotiating with terrorists.” And right on cue, here he is displaying that staggering law of self-awareness that is so common on the right:

Did you hear that? It’s the sound of a million irony meters crying out in anguish and then being silenced forever. Let’s recount a bit of history, shall we? Ollie North was the Reagan administration operative who orchestrated the entire Iran-Contra deal. He sold thousands of TOW missiles to Iran, in direct contravention of the law, in order to get them to pressure terrorists in Lebanon to release hostages. He then used the money from that sale to fund another group of terrorists, the Contras in Nicaragua, also in direct contravention of the law. If we could turn chutzpah into energy, this hypocritical asshole could power the entire planet forever.

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  • Kevin Kehres

    The title of this post is too short. It should read “Traitor Ollie North Criticizes Obama Prisoner Swap”.

  • StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return!

    Yep. Jawdropping hypocrisy from Oliver “Iran-Contras” North. Just breath taking.

    I think Jim Wright’s Stonekettle Station’/i> blog says it best here too :

    http://www.stonekettle.com/2014/06/negotiating-with-terrorists.html

    and the follow up afterwards is well worth reading as well.

  • sugarfrosted

    If this is the interview I already seen, he claims that “negotiating with terrorist will embolden them.” There is one problem with this though, he was a POW. The only real effect I could see this having is fewer capture soldiers being killed, because they have value to Al Qaida now.

  • cgm3

    here he is displaying that staggering law of self-awareness that is so common on the right

    I’m assuming you meant lack… though somehow law seems to convey the gist of that attitude just as well…

  • colnago80

    I always liked Lawrence Eagleburger referring to North as “that pipsqueak”.

  • eric

    Not at all surprised to see this. Let’s face it, the moment the story broke, journalists all over the nation said to themselves “oh, I gotta see if I can get Ollie North on this.”

  • Synfandel

    The only real effect I could see this having is fewer capture soldiers being killed, because they have value to Al Qaida now.

    Really? You can’t see it encouraging Al Qaida to take more western prisoners? I guess I just have a very fertile imagination.

  • http://motherwell.livejournal.com/ Raging Bee

    Ollie North’s dealings with terrorists involved a cake in the shape of a key! Can Obama say that? Of course not! Yet more proof that socialists can’t innovate.

    If we could turn chutzpah into energy, this hypocritical asshole could power the entire planet forever.

    Sounds a lot like that unlimited-energy gizmo in the “Iron Man” movies — which was, now that I think of it, invented by a guy with a lot of chutzpah…

  • noastronomer

    @eric #6

    … and cackling the whole time. The journalists that is.

  • Akira MacKenzie

    It’s not the same at all! Ollie North was trying to fund free market, Christian revolutionaries fighting against a Soviet aggression! (So what if they smuggled a little blow?) He wouldn’t have had to make a deal with the Iranians if it weren’t for those pinko, fellow-travelers in Congress who cut off Contra aid in the first place!

    Meanwhile, Barrack HUSSEIN Obama’s actions are TREASON because…. because… errrr…

    …BENGHAZI!!!!!!!

  • zippythepinhead

    Mr North could have simply said “Reagan negotiated with terrorists for hostages in the 80s and look at what a disaster that turned into”. Then of course it was the trading of arms to Iran for “assistance” from Iran for the release of hostages in Lebanon. (Strangely, Israel acted as go-between in these deals, since the US has had a trade embargo against Iran.) Reagan of course said several times that negotiating for hostages with terrorists would only lead to more hostage taking, and went on to demonstrate exactly that, with a hostage release only to be followed by another hostage taking (Hey! Hypothesis — experiment … can’t argue with that!). Republicans like Mr North are echoing that point in their criticism of Obama, yet they don’t say where they get that notion from. (Then (Iran) as now (Qatar), we weren’t reeeeeeeally dealing with a terrorist group, but with a third party.)

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    I thought Colonel North was a patriot. I can’t believe he did all that for Obama.

  • http://www.pandasthumb.org Area Man

    I think we should have offered to release agent North back to his handlers in Iran in exchange for Bergdahl. I doubt that there’s much damage he can do now.

  • The Gregarious Misanthrope

    And lost in all of this the fact that the 5 men exchanged for Bergdahl were Taliban, not al Qaeda. Even people on this board seem to be conflating the two. Granted, it can be hard to tell which group of armed Muslim men trying to kill American soldiers is which, but by constantly lumping them together, we will continue to make errors that will come back to bite us.

    From the descriptions I have read, these 5 were government officials and/or military commanders of the Taliban, the former government of Afghanistan. As I recall, we made demands of that government, then invaded and fought against their forces. If these 5 are not POWs, then the phrase has no meaning at all.

    We exchanged 5 POWs for one of ours. When conflicts end, you return POWs. That we didn’t properly classify these men as POWs is a self-inflicted wound. The notion of American exceptionalism seems to be that the rules don’t apply to us, even ones we wrote. It will take a long time to undo that damage to our credibility. Classifying POWs properly and repatriating them after the end of hostilities is the right thing to do. Using these 5 to get Bergdahl back, whatever he may have done, was the right thing to do.

  • Pierce R. Butler

    He sold thousands of TOW missiles to Iran…

    Just as Iran was, through their then-puppet Hezbollah, in process of blowing up 241 of his fellow US Marines in their barracks in Beirut.

    Certain Marines I know, ones capable of connecting dots, urgently desire to meet with Lt. Col. North to discuss this – in a dark alley.

  • Donnie

    Olie is just pissed because the Americans did not take advantage and make money off of the prisoner swap by including some missiles. There was money to be made and the Obama Administration missed out on the opportunity – that is way Olie is soooo pissed!

  • busterggi

    Yes, while my co-workers were decrying Obama for negotiating with terroists I mentioned Saint Ronald doing more & worse. Somehow I apparently immediately became invisible & inaudible.

  • StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return!

    @ ^ busterggi : Well,now that’s a cool superpower – did you use it to steal their wallets or play some fun pranks on them? 😉

  • Jared Ragland

    Greg @14: nailed it. When a war ends, you exchange prisoners, wrap up loose ends, and everybody shakes hands in Paris or Ghent or wherever and poses for a picture, because the war ended.

  • http://onhandcomments.blogspot.com/ left0ver1under

    Ah, but there’s a difference. When Obama negotiated with terrorists, he was doing a prisoner swap to bring Bergdahl home as quickly as possible.

    When North negotiated with terrorists, he was giving them weapons to keep US citizens as hostages until after the 1980 election.

    North wasn’t trying to secure the release of the embassy staff, he was trying to prevent it. That’s a completely different situation.

  • John Pieret

    It’s the sound of a million irony meters crying out in anguish and then being silenced forever.

    The base note was millions of heads and desks colliding.

  • John Pieret

    Synfandel @ &:

    Really? You can’t see it encouraging Al Qaida to take more western prisoners?

    As opposed to what their present operational intent is … to kill westerners? Can you name any Al Qaida operation that would have been made any worse by taking prisoners rather than just killing people?

  • freehand

    I had always thought that it was the US Marine position to never leave anyone behind. I think Lt. Col. North for disabusing me of that notion.

    .

    Also, as I recall, McCain was freed as part of a prisoner exchange.

  • freehand

    Synfandel: The only real effect I could see this having is fewer capture soldiers being killed, because they have value to Al Qaida now.

    .

    Really? You can’t see it encouraging Al Qaida to take more western prisoners? I guess I just have a very fertile imagination.

    .

    Ummm. Isn’t that what sugarfrosted said? See, the alternative is shooting US troops. Capturing them alive is harder. But if it’s profitable, maybe they’ll make the effort.

  • colnago80

    Re #20

    You are completely full of shit. The Iran/Contra affair took place in 1985, long after the 1980 election. Try to keep up.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iran_contra

  • http://polrant@blogspot.com democommie

    Olver North is a traitor and a piece of shit.

    “Really? You can’t see it encouraging Al Qaida to take more western prisoners? I guess I just have a very fertile imagination.”

    I don’t know who wrote this and I can’t really argue with it. However, I DOUBT VERY, VERY, VERY, VERY THE MUCHEST THAT THOSE FUCKERS NEED ANY ENCOURAGEMENT IN THAT REGARD.

    @20:

    You, sir, are correct about the chronology, It was a DIFFERENT Reagan lackey who was involved in that deal with the Iranians in 1979-80.

  • colnago80

    Re democommie @ #26

    Do you have a link for that? I vaguely recall that there are rumors that the muck da mucks in Iran were approached by someone purporting to be a representative of Ronnie the rat suggesting that they hold on to the embassy hostages until after the election in the US. However, I was unable to find a link to a story. AFAIK, this is an unproven rumor which would have been fodder for the blogs since heave hoed conspiracy theorist Don Williams.

  • http://polrant@blogspot.com democommie

    @27:

    It is absolutely an unrproven rumor. And OJ Simpson was not convicted of the murders of Nicole Brown and Ron Goldman.

    The GOP’s Iran Hostage gambit is one of the only operations that they were able to pull off without getting caught.

    One might even surmise that the Iran-Contra affair was the logical next move by the Reaganauts after they saw how well the previous op had worked out.

  • colnago80

    Re democommie

    How about a link to a story on the subject. I know that such stories exist because I recall reading one several years ago. Even Don Williams usually cited some sort of reference on of his conspiracy theories.

    Just for your information, O. J. Simpson was not convicted of the murders of Nicole Brown and Ron Goldman because of the total incompetence of the prosecution and the cops. I don’t think that Brayton would appreciate a long dissertation on the Simpson trial but just for starters, the cops failed to take into evidence a warmup suit that was seen in Simpson’s washing machine that matched the clothing that he was seen wearing when he and Brian Kaelin went out for a snack at McDonalds shortly before the murders took place (noted by deputy prosecutor Henry Goldberg and detective Mark Fuhrman).