A world made more dangerous

Prisoner exchange with the Taliban was an utter failure on many levels

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In a presidential administration awash in outrageous, dangerous illegalities, the prisoner swap of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl stands out disgustingly as one of the worst.

President Obama recently agreed to release five radical Taliban fighters from Guantanamo Bay in exchange for America’s only prisoner of the Afghan War.

In doing so, this president has made the world more dangerous.

Those five prisoners are among the Taliban’s top battle-hardened commanders, and it is virtually a dead-lock certainty that they will re-enter the war in Afghanistan as soon as they can.

One of the five is Mullah Mohammad Fazil, a leader infamous for his exceptional cruelty. According to Taliban commander Mullah Salem Khan, Fazil’s return “is like pouring 10,000 Taliban fighters into the battle on the side of jihad. Now the Taliban have the right lion to lead them in the final moment before victory in Afghanistan.”

So let’s itemize what Obama has done so far recently to enable a strategic leap forward for the Taliban:

• He announced to our enemy in Afghanistan precisely when we would leave the battlefield.

• He returned to the enemy a volatile handful of their most powerful and influential field generals.

• And this is after the White House revealed to the world the identity of the top CIA official in Afghanistan, during Obama’s recent surprise visit to the country.

The Taliban is overjoyed at this favorable power shift.

And what did America get in return? We got Bergdahl, a soldier who – just past midnight June 30, 2009 – left a note in his tent saying he no longer supported the war, and that he was leaving his unit to start a new life.

OBAMA’S NATIONAL security adviser, Susan Rice, had the nerve to say on ABC’s This Week that Bowe Bergdahl “served the United States with honor and distinction.”

Really? Prove it. What honor? What distinction? Members of his own unit have come forward to paint a picture of Bergdahl as someone who became increasingly disengaged with his mission as a U.S. soldier.

Bergdahl is innocent until proved guilty. But he has a ton of explaining to do, and important questions to answer. He should face a court-martial on charges of desertion at least, and possibly charges linked to the deaths of at least six soldiers who died while trying to find him.

And what of a tweet apparently sent last week by Bergdahl’s father to a Taliban spokesman, four days before his son’s announced release? It read: “I am still working to free all Guantanamo prisoners. God will repay for the death of every Afghan child, ameen.” Exactly whose side is this man on?

So why move to get Bergdahl now? The story being trotted around by Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel is that our government had to act quickly to secure Bergdahl’s release because his “health was deteriorating.” Absent of meaningful evidence, we don’t buy that.

Here’s whose health is actually deteriorating: untold numbers of honorable veterans in this country, right now, who are victims of a
shambles of a military health-care system – a system linked to veterans’ deaths. Why didn’t the government make that a priority – to act quickly to save them?

THAT TOUCHES ON a much more likely theory that’s out there, on why the Bergdahl swap occurred when it did.

The Veterans Affairs disaster has been gaining lasting traction, and this administration knew it. The White House was desperate to change the national discussion of its utter failure. It needed to hatch a cynical political ploy (1) to push the VA story off the front pages, and out of the minds of the public; and (2) to curry favor to disgruntled vets, by hailing Bergdahl’s release as a crowning achievement symbolic of our government’s unswerving commitment to our fighting men and women.

Instead, it has blown up in the administration’s face like a Taliban bomb.

Another aspect of this exchange can’t be ignored: The president didn’t notify Congress the required 30 days in advance before striking this agreement.

Obama’s prisoner deal clearly was illegal.

Experts on the right and left agree on this point. From the left, here’s CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin: “I think he clearly broke the law. The law says 30 days’ notice. Give 30 days’ notice. Now, it is true that he issued a signing statement, but signing statements are not law. Signing statements are the president’s opinion about what the law should mean.”

U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, the Democratic chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, said her committee should have gotten a heads-up before securing the deal. “We had participated in a number of briefings some time ago, and there (were) considerable concerns,” she said.

What appears to have been concocted as a grandstand play to make Americans forget a huge scandal collapsed into yet another scandal.

It’s a lopsided prisoner exchange in which the bloodthirsty Taliban got the better of the United States – and the free world is bracing to get the worst from a newly energized, presidentially enabled terrorist threat.

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KSL
144459
Points
KSL 06/03/14 - 11:48 pm
17
3
Great editorial.

Great editorial.

KSL
144459
Points
KSL 06/03/14 - 11:51 pm
15
3
Hope people who supported

Hope people who supported Obama finally realize what is really all about.

ymnbde
10751
Points
ymnbde 06/04/14 - 05:01 am
13
3
O is the greatest alchemist of all time…

turning truth into lead and lies into gold

Pond Life
17682
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Pond Life 06/04/14 - 05:06 am
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Bring out the defenders, the
Unpublished

Bring out the defenders, the deflectors, and the rationalizers. Some are so emotionally invested in Obama that they defend him even with this egregious and admitted violation of the law.

carcraft
28572
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carcraft 06/04/14 - 05:11 am
15
3
To Obama laws are suggestions

To Obama laws are suggestions lying is a poorly practiced art form, and incompetence is a registered trade mark and scandals are used to distract from scandals. Maybe, just maybe the lame stream media will start reporting honestly!

jack234
852
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jack234 06/04/14 - 05:13 am
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I guess if I was one to

I guess if I was one to always find fault in what the president does, I would be critical too. I am glad that I was blessed with an open mind and can think for myself. I don't need Fox talking points. We don't leave soldiers on the battle field. If he is guilty of something, we have court martials. We don't let the enemy punish our disserters, if that is what he is. There are very few leaders in congress who object to this exchange. If they make more effort to capture American soldiers, then that is on them. We don't let their possible actions dictate our policy. We are stronger than that. I guess when he bring the one in Mexico home, they'll find something wrong with that. If I was the president, I would just become more contrary and I would "do it my way", because he is damn if he do and damn if he don't". I personally think he is the best "black" president that we have had. Now, have a good day and be objective when you post, no talking points.

Pond Life
17682
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Pond Life 06/04/14 - 05:18 am
14
3
Jack....is your mind open
Unpublished

Jack....is your mind open enough to be critical that he violated the law with his prisoner exchange, or does that not matter to you?

Pond Life
17682
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Pond Life 06/04/14 - 05:19 am
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" I don't need Fox talking
Unpublished

" I don't need Fox talking points."

Not when you have MSNBC, I suppose.

nofanofobama
6993
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nofanofobama 06/04/14 - 05:22 am
15
3
time to impeach....we are now

time to impeach....we are now a lawless land..obumler and the ruling elites need to go...where are the statesmen like we had in the 1700 when we became a country...we are in miserable shape...morally bankrupt and fiscally bankrupt..its gotten worse since obumler was elected...impeach him and start getting rid of the ruling elite...laws need to apply to all ....

Bodhisattva
7279
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Bodhisattva 06/04/14 - 05:44 am
3
16
"What appears to have been

"What appears to have been concocted as a grandstand play to make Americans forget a huge scandal collapsed into yet another scandal." More propaganda and yellow journalism from the Chronicle. Why should we expect less.
beginningin 1981, Israel asked Reagan officials for the go ahead to begin selling Iran spare parts for the F-4 Phantom, other spaare parts for US equiment and ammunition and weapons to Iran and was given the ok BEFORE HE WAS EVEN INAUGURATED then, a meer 2 months and 17 days since Iran had realeased our hostages, through a shell game, and third parties, the weapons started flowing to our enemies. This was just the beginning. They later received thouasands of TOW anti tank missles, Hawk anti aircraft missles, tons of ammo and other weapons, and numerous spare parts. A US plane (unmarked of course) even flew into Iran loaded with weapons for our supposed enemy. All illegal, of course, Then, in another illegal act, Reagab funneled the money to a group of terrorist who were trying to overthrow a democratically elected government in Central America who were nothing but a bunch of murdering thugs, who murdered tens of thousands and raped and murdered nuns. As if none of that was bad enough, Reagan, and later GHW Bush decided they'd turned the war too much in Iran's favor and decided to provide Iraq and Saddam Hussein with his chemical and biological weapons capabilities and even used US technology to provide him with targetting information to use his chemical weapons. And the Chronicle whines about 5 men for a swap to get one of ours back, and even in a previous editorial tried to compare Benghazi and "Fast and Furious" to Iran Contra? Unbelievable bias, unbelievable propaganda, unbelievable yellow journalism. Yet, typical of what we've come to expect of a "news"paper that spews talking points from right wing PACS, does no research and overlooks US Presidents helping a dictator use WMD's and considers it on the same level as people getting killed in a war zone. There a little over 5,000 Americans killed in a war zones that we were lied about the entire intentions, intelligence, and justifications for the war. When will you scream for justice for them? Never, since those that did the lying have an (R) after their names. Did they at least send the candy and flowers we were greeted with to the widows and widowers? When will the money start pouring in for the war that was going to pay for itself? Oh, that right, you get to blame Obama for the trillions it''s not paying. Hypocrites, as always.

carcraft
28572
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carcraft 06/04/14 - 06:20 am
12
3
Lol Bod on a roll. Go back

Lol Bod on a roll. Go back to Reagan who saved America from the other failed president! Did I mention Roosevelt knew about Pearl Harbor before it happened and had US troops fighting Japan before war was declared against Japan?

myfather15
57234
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myfather15 06/04/14 - 06:27 am
11
2
Jack

"We don't leave soldiers on the battle field."

We wouldn't be leaving him, he CHOSE to desert his unit!! So yes, if one choses to leave and "start a new life" we should leave him!! If you say he didn't desert, then explain his actions!! In the middle of the night, he leaves his post and turns himself into the taliban!! Who does this? The taliban is a vicious organization, known to torture and decapitate American military personel!! Who in their right mind would turn themselves into them?? The only way you could survive this, is probably to denounce your Country and become muslim because they DO NOT respect anyone besides other radical muslims!! My bet is that he did just this!! Is he now a spy for them? And then we trade 5 top ranking taliban terrorists for him? What happen the the policy that the United States doesn't negotiate with terrorists?

"We don't let their possible actions dictate our policy."

This is correct; but once again, our policy since we were attacked on 9/11 has been that we do not negotiate with terrorists!! So, why now? With this particular deserter, who CHOSE to leave? We've allowed many captured Americans to remain in custody and some even executed!! So WHY NOW??? Something is NOT RIGHT with this deal!!

myfather15
57234
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myfather15 06/04/14 - 06:31 am
10
3
Reagan has to fix a HUGE mess created by Carter!!

Then the love absolutely LOVES to blast him for his efforts!! AND, although there were weapons deals, the left loves to falsely bolster what actually happened!! The left has absolutely ZERO morals, integrity, or honor!! So why would ANYONE expect them to tell the truth about anything!!

They stand for everything immoral, anti-american, indecent, repugnant; and stand against everything honorable!! They disguise right as wrong and wrong as right, using confusion as their ultimate weapon!!

myfather15
57234
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myfather15 06/04/14 - 06:33 am
10
3
PL

"Your credibility is stretched to it's breaking point with your refusal to EVER back up your claims."

Stretched? They actually still have some with you? With me, that was lost a LONG time ago!!

Pond Life
17682
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Pond Life 06/04/14 - 06:40 am
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4
Perhaps I was just being nice
Unpublished

Perhaps I was just being nice and giving credit where it wasn't due. I guess I can fall back on the southern saying when you have nothing better to say. "That Bodhistechfan......bless his heart."

seenitB4
98463
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seenitB4 06/04/14 - 07:03 am
12
2
Just a change in the headlines

Didn't work so well for him...even pushing Rice on tv again.

Bizkit
35732
Points
Bizkit 06/04/14 - 07:24 am
11
2
The President is apparently

The President is apparently shocked at the response to this exchange. That says it all. The man is not fit to be the President of the US. That now is a fact with impunity-period, settled science, end of story.

Bizkit
35732
Points
Bizkit 06/04/14 - 07:12 am
11
2
Only a fool could excuse the

Only a fool could excuse the President exchanging 5 of the worse terrorist in Gitmo for one soldier. We don't leave soldiers behind but we DO NOT NEGOTIATE WITH TERRORIST either. Obama broke federal law when he returned terrorist assets (actual terrorist) to a terroristic organization. It is an impeachable offense. Obama is a traitor and just handed the terrorist a silver platter and invite to come kill Americans-(likely because this lunatic believes it will reduce "manmade" global warming)

Bizkit
35732
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Bizkit 06/04/14 - 07:25 am
11
2
Rice this time stated they

Rice this time stated they informed Congress (which Dems and Rep deny) and that Bergdahl served admirably and like he is some kind of hero.

Bizkit
35732
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Bizkit 06/04/14 - 07:33 am
12
3
If the President isn't

If the President isn't impeached for aiding and abetting the enemy who we are at war with then there is no justice in America.

edcushman
7930
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edcushman 06/04/14 - 07:46 am
7
3
"Jack....is your mind open
Unpublished

"Jack....is your mind open enough to be critical that he violated the law with his prisoner exchange, or does that not matter to you?"
PL, if the lying, racist communist in the WH was white the house would already have brought impeachment charges against him but they don't have the guts bring them against the 1st black president. It is a shame but at least 90% of blacks will defend the evil thug no matter what he does.

carcraft
28572
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carcraft 06/04/14 - 07:46 am
12
2
We don't leave Americans

We don't leave Americans behind unless it is the Ambassador of Libya !

carcraft
28572
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carcraft 06/04/14 - 07:52 am
10
2
If Obama and Clinton had

If Obama and Clinton had acted quickly in Libya and provided the security requested or pulled Stevens out (like the British and Red Cross did), or even attempted a Rescue Stevens might be alive today.

edcushman
7930
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edcushman 06/04/14 - 07:54 am
8
3
"Didn't work so well for
Unpublished

"Didn't work so well for him...even pushing Rice on tv again."
I feel a little sorry for Rice. It seems that she WILL SAY ANYTHING she is told by the idiot in the WH.

edcushman
7930
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edcushman 06/04/14 - 07:57 am
8
3
"The President is apparently
Unpublished

"The President is apparently shocked at the response to this exchange."
What else can we expect from a community organizer?

GuyGene
1488
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GuyGene 06/04/14 - 07:57 am
6
3
Timing...

VA head resigns over VA scandal, then this? At this time?

carcraft
28572
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carcraft 06/04/14 - 08:03 am
9
3
LOL Susan Rice the Patsy's

LOL Susan Rice the Patsy's patsy!

carcraft
28572
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carcraft 06/04/14 - 08:12 am
11
3
Like Dude, he deserted 5

Like Dude, he deserted 5 years ago! What difference does it make now?

deestafford
32177
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deestafford 06/04/14 - 08:15 am
8
2
A few points starting with the saying, "We don't leave no one...

A few points starting with the saying, "We don't leave no one behind on the battlefield." That is not dictum and used only by soldiers as it pertains to the immediate field of battle not the entire battle zone.

We have left soldiers behind in every war.

Obama is so ignorant of history that he said Lincoln and FDR (whom Obama likes to compare himself to and reaches the conclusion he is best of the three.) face after their wars. The fallacy is both of these were dead before the war was over or in Lincoln's case just as the war was over. And we did leave many behind in WWII, Korea, and Viet Nam.

Let's not forget that at least six and maybe as high as 14 soldiers died looking for this deserter and potential collaborator/traitor. Also, how many soldiers died in the process of capturing these five worst-of-the worst? How many lives were changed by taking these five off the battlefield?

Did you notice the smile breaking out on Obama's face as the deserter's father started speaking in Arabic of whatever language praising Allah? I saw an isolated close up of his face and he started grinning as the father started praising Allah.

If this deserter turns out that he collaborated with the Taliban and aided them in actions against his unit as has been insinuated, he should be executed. Buried in an unmarked grave and statues of the six who died looking for him standing facing away from his grave.

Note that when the hapless Hagel announced to the troops about the exchange for the deserter rather than getting the cheers he expected he was met with dead silence.

The military is ruthless of culling from its ranks those who violated the code of the soldier. The question is will the spineless, perfume princes who are the generals in the pentagon do this or cave into "compassion and he has suffered enough"? My guess is Obama, Hagel, and the generals will do the latter.

KSL
144459
Points
KSL 06/04/14 - 08:16 am
8
3
Obama was in Afghanistan. He

Obama was in Afghanistan. He should have been traded one for one. Now that would have been a fair trade: one alledged traitor for a known traitor.

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