Potential presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, the former Secretary of State, claimed in a prior interview that it didn’t matter if Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl deserted his post in Afghanistan.
Today, in the culmination of a long investigation, the U.S. Army charged Bergdahl with misbehavior before the enemy and desertion. If convicted after a court martial, he could receive a dishonorable discharge and a prison sentence that could range from five years to life as well as other penalties. The case now goes to the military equivalent of a grand jury.
“The charges are the latest development in a long and bitter debate over Bergdahl’s case, and underscore the military and political ramifications of his decision on June 30, 2009, to leave his post after expressing misgivings about the U.S. military’s role, as well as his own, in the Afghanistan war,” AP explained.
On May 31, 2014, Barack Obama presided over a Rose Garden ceremony with Bergdahl’s parents in announcing that the soldier had been released from Taliban captivity after five years. President Obama advisor Susan Rice, the same official that claimed that an internet video caused the attack on the Benghazi embassy compound, declared on national TV on June 1, 2014, that Bergdahl “served with honor and distinction.”
Obama did not give Congress 30 days’ notice of the swap out of Gitmo, an alert which is required by federal statute. Closing Gitmo is one of the president’s unfulfilled 2008 campaign promises. “The primary goal [of the exchange] was making it easier to finally shut down Guantanamo Bay… It was never about Bowe Bergdahl. It was always about Gitmo,” The Federalist claimed.
The Taliban Five as they are called are supposedly under house arrest in Qatar, with at least one of them already suspected of trying to go back to the fight.
“There are good reasons why the Taliban has long wanted the five freed from Gitmo. All five are among the Taliban’s top commanders in U.S. custody and are still revered in jihadist circles. Two of the five have been wanted by the UN for war crimes. And because of their prowess, Joint Task Force-Guantanamo (JTF-GTMO) deemed all five of them ‘high’ risks to the U.S. and its allies,” The Weekly Standard reported at the time of their release.
Six U.S. soldiers reportedly died in action trying to track down Bergdahl in Afghanistan.
During her book tour for the underperforming memoir Hard Choices, Hillary Clinton surprised Diane Sawyer with this response (while slipping in a plug for the tome) about whether the Bergdahl swap was “a deal with the devil.”
“If you look at all the factors going into this decision, of course there are competing interests and values. One of our values is we bring everybody home off the battlefield the best we can. It doesn’t matter how they ended up in a prisoner-of-war situation… it does not matter; we bring our people home.”
In June of last year, six U.S. soldiers from Bowe Bergdahl’s 30-member Afghanistan platoon unanimously told FNC‘s Megyn Kelly on The Kelly File that he was a deserter from their frontline outpost and should be court-martialed by the Army.
Ret. U.S. Army Col. Allen West, the former Florida congressman, claimed at the time that the Bowe Bergdahl exchange for five terrorists was an attempt to take the Veterans Affairs hospital scandal out of the news headlines.
Do you agree with Hillary Clinton that it is irrelevant if Bowe Bergdahl is/was a deserter?
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