The POW exchange debacle

The POW release was orchestrated to be a feel-good moment .  But now the Obama administration is dealing with a major scandal.  Not just because 5 dangerous terrorist leaders were released from Gitmo.  Not just because the president broke the law in not informing Congress.  But mainly because America’s troops are in an uproar about all of this attention being given to an anti-American deserter whose dereliction of duty reportedly cost the lives of six soldiers.

From retired Army officer Ralph Peters, Why Team Obama Was Blindsided by the Bergdahl Backlash | National Review Online:

Congratulations, Mr. President! And identical congrats to your sorcerer’s apprentice, National Security Adviser Susan Rice. By trying to sell him as an American hero, you’ve turned a deserter already despised by soldiers in the know into quite possibly the most-hated individual soldier in the history of our military.

I have never witnessed such outrage from our troops.

Exhibit A: Ms. Rice. In one of the most tone-deaf statements in White House history (we’re making a lot of history here), the national-security adviser, on a Sunday talk show, described Bergdahl as having served “with honor and distinction.” Those serving in uniform and those of us who served previously were already stirred up, but that jaw-dropper drove us into jihad mode. . . .

The president, too, appears stunned. He has so little understanding of (or interest in) the values and traditions of our troops that he and his advisers really believed that those in uniform would erupt into public joy at the news of Bergdahl’s release — as D.C. frat kids did when Osama bin Laden’s death was trumpeted.

Both President Obama and Ms. Rice seem to think that the crime of desertion in wartime is kind of like skipping class. They have no idea of how great a sin desertion in the face of the enemy is to those in our military. The only worse sin is to side actively with the enemy and kill your brothers in arms. This is not sleeping in on Monday morning and ducking Gender Studies 101.

Bergdahl’s e-mails:

“I am ashamed to be an American,” he wrote in his final email to his parents, a 2012 Rolling Stone article reported. “And the title of U.S. soldier is just the lie of fools. I am sorry for everything. The horror that is America is disgusting.”

The email indicated Bergdahl had lost faith in the U.S. effort in Afghanistan.

“I am sorry for everything here,” he said. “These people need help, yet what they get is the most conceited country in the world telling them that they are nothing and that they are stupid.”

CBS News reported that Bergdahl mailed home boxes containing his uniform and other belongings before he disappeared.

“The future is too good to waste on lies,” he further wrote. “And life is way too short to care for the damnation of others, as well as to spend it helping fools with their ideas that are wrong. I have seen their ideas and I am ashamed to even be American. The horror of the self-righteous arrogance that they thrive in. It is all revolting.”

A member of Bergdahl’s unit tells what happened.  So the White House, compounding the problem, attacks the soldiers!

The six soldiers who died trying to get Bergdahl back.

 

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.


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