Monday, June 02, 2014
'The Horror That Is America' - Ransoming Bowe Bergdahl
President Obama staged a convenient photo-op in the Rose garden with the parents of Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl, a U.S. soldier captured by the Taliban under suspicious circumstances and released in exchange for five senior Taliban commanders held in Club Gitmo. The event was stilted and strange for a number of reasons.
It was absolutely astounding to hear this president say that 'we leave no man behind' in view of what happened in Benghazi...and of course, with the revelation of the VA 'death lists', I'd say those wounded vets were definitely left behind.
Then there was the lingering fallout from the fact that once again, this president blatantly broke the law, which called for the president to inform Congress 30 days before any pending transfer of jihadis from Gitmo. Even Obama loyalists like the New Yorker's Jeffrey Toobin and California Democrat Dianne Feinstein were shocked and critical over this. And members of the president's own team who voiced any opposition to the way this deal was being conducted were simply told to shut up and salute.
But the president's behavior aside, Robert Bergdahl, Bowe Bergdahl's father was absolutely bizarre.
After the usual remarks, Bergdahl said his son had supposedly lost the ability to speak English and recited"“Bismillah ir-Rahman ir-Rahim.” That phrase, from the Qu'ran translates as “In the name of Allah, most Gracious, most Compassionate.”
Either Bergdahl has converted to Islam or is simply unknowing, but uttering that phrase is a profession of belief in the Muslim faith. Was that supposed to be a message to his son, who mentioned in Taliban propaganda films that he was 'exploring Islam?'
Since the words are Arabic, not Pashto, the language his son's Taliban captors would have been speaking, it somehow doesn't gel with the idea of a father trying to communicate with a son who has supposedly lost the ability to speak his native language in a mere 5 years.
Bergdahl senior apparently also has some interesting views on America, not that he isn't entitled. Here's a tweet he tried to delete:
Why would anyone be working to free the sort of murderers held at in Club Gitmo if they had, shall we say, a positive view of America? And since he obviously doesn't hold the Taliban or other jihadis responsible for 'the death of every Afghan child' because he wants them all freed, it's obvious he blames America for their deaths....and is calling for Allah to take revenge.
Bowe Bergdahl himself apparently has some interesting views on his service and his country.
Shortly before the Taliban got their hands on him, he said in an e-mail to his father:
“I am sorry for everything here,” he wrote. “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.”
Bergdahl also complained about fellow soldiers. The battalion commander was a “conceited old fool,” he said, and the only “decent” sergeants, planning to leave the platoon “as soon as they can,” told the privates — Bergdahl then among them — “to do the same.”
“I am ashamed to be an American. And the title of US soldier is just the lie of fools,” he concluded. “I am sorry for everything. The horror that is America is disgusting.”
His father's reply? “OBEY YOUR CONSCIENCE!”
OK...it's a soldier's prerogative to gripe from time to time. But 'I'm ashamed to be an American' and 'The horror that is America is disgusting'? Obviously we have someone who was raised with certain views and given his father's outbursts, the apple didn't fall far from the tree.
Three days after that e-mail exchange, Bowe Bergdahl left camp on his own without authorization accompanied by two Afghans whom he had befriended, according to the original report. The Taliban said Bergdahl was intoxicated when they captured him,something the Army denied although since they weren't present at the scene, one wonders how they would know.
What Bergdahl did is commonly known as desertion, and a number of his fellow soldiers see it exactly that way.
My own take is that Bergdahl was likely a career flake who probably never intended to desert, but merely intended to go AWOL. He went off with some Afghans he trusted with the idea of scoring drugs and/or sex. Instead, they apparently sold him to the Taliban while he was 'relaxing', which would square with the Taliban's account that he was intoxicated when they picked him up (note the word I'm using, 'intoxicated' as opposed to 'drunk'. Booze is difficult to find in Muslim rural Afghanistan except in areas like military bases or Kabul where westerners hang out,while dope is easy to score).
At the every least, he was obviously AWOL, and his tale about being captured while 'lagging behind on patrol' was exploded as sheer BS early on.
Aside from that, apparently there were casualties that were incurred searching for him. Men died because Bowe Bergdahl decided to bug out.
It seems pretty obvious Bowe Bergdahl did not 'serve with honor and distinction' nor was he 'captured on the battlefield' as President Obama's National Security Adviser Susan 'It Was The Video, The Video' Rice insisted to the talking heads at ABC. Although perhaps that's how the team in the White House considers it, given what appears to be their conception of 'honor and distinction'. Especially since Bergdahl's being cut loose got some Gitmo jihadis freed and knocked the VA scandal out of the headlines for awhile.
Six soldiers whom did not desert lost their lives searching for him. 'Honor and distinction?'
What he did not only led to American casualties but the freeing of five dangerous men, and it put a price on the head of every American in Afghanistan now that the Taliban has seen that kidnapping is such a successful tactic.
According to the USMJ, at the very least,Bowe Bergdahl ought to face charges by a military tribunal for deserting his post. Given our current commander-in-chief, the odds are he won't.
I'm glad Bowe Bergdahl made it home, even if he despises the country that paid such a high price to free him. The Taliban are some of the most brutal people on the planet,and no one deserves to be held by them.
But Bowe Bergdahl is no hero. And the attempts by the president and his people to paint him as one to suit their own political agenda are beneath contempt. There can be no clearer indication of the disdain this president and his team have for our military...and in view of their speech and actions in the last five and a half years, that is saying something.
UPDATE: The president's little diversion to put Benghazi and the VA scandal has exploded in his face aa more facts have come out about this and public opinion has rapidly shifted.
It turns out that the Pentagon had investigated Bergdahl's disappearance and as long ago as 2010 had investigated and concluded he had deserted.Among other things, he left a letter stating that he was deserting and that he was renouncing his citizenship.
And that leads to a number of questions for the Pentagon. Bergdahl was never officially classified as a POW for obvious reasons, yet he was automatically promoted to sergeant while in captivity, and the Army swooped in with investigators who forced many of the soldiers in Bergdahl's unit to sign unprecedented non-disclosure agreements.In fact, a number of those soldiers simply defied those agreements and spoke out when they were treated to the sickening spectacle of their commander-in-chief trying to make a hero out of Bergdahl in the Rose Garden.
Who ordered the Army to keep Bergdahl on the promotion list and to try make sure no one in his unit spoke out about what had happened? And why?
And what about reports that Bowe Bergdahl had converted to Islam and was giving the Taliban intel on U.S. tactics and training in bomb making?
There's even actually some credible evidence that Bergdahl had tried to contact the Taliban and may actually have left his unit with the idea of joining them.
Meanwhile, the top level Taliban commanders we gave up for a deserter were greeted like heroes in Qatar and will have full freedom of movement while they're there...which may actually include travel out of the country.
These men are responsible for literally thousands of deaths and will undoubtedly be responsible for many more in the future. None of that mattered next to President Obama's personal political requirements or his agenda to shove detainees out of Gitmo,no matter how dangerous.
Will the Army actually investigate this? Will 'Sergeant' Bergdahl actually be tried for desertion? Don't bet on it.
But no matter what happens, this question remains. There comes a point when cowardice, lawlessness, incompetence and arrogance get to the point where they can no longer be tolerated, because they've become dangerous. How much longer are the American people going to put up with this? How much are they prepared to take?
How much more contempt will you swallow, my countrymen, before too much becomes enough? How much?