GOP supports Bergdahl Trade

Recently the Taliban released Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl after he was held by them as a prisoner of war for the last 5 years in Afghanistan. . Sgt. Bergdahl was the only prisoner of war left in Afghanistan. Almost immediately Republican lawmakers and pundits began criticizing the Obama administration on how it handled the release. Before Bergdahl was released, Republican lawmakers were some of the sergeant's biggest advocates, and repeatedly pressed the administration to do everything within its power to get him returned. Some of the same Republicans voicing criticism offered support for the same tactic used to free Sgt. Bergdahl.

  • Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.) in a May 22, 2014 Press Release urged the Department of Defense to do all it can to find Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl and bring him home safely.
  • Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz) on February 18, 2014 told CNN's Anderson Cooper that he would support an arrangement where a prisoner exchange involving five really hard-core Taliban leaders for our American fighting man takes place.
  • Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK) — the ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee said that the U.S. “must make every effort to bring this captured soldier home to his family.”

These three Republican Senators all changed their positions and are taking the opposite position regarding the release of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl. Based on the criticism you would get the impression that some Republicans thought that Sgt. Bergdahl should be left in Afghanistan. Why the criticism? Some see it as a political victory for the Obama administration, some also have the belief that the five prisoners will start killing Americans again, some believe Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl was a traitor. Despite this there are still Republicans who support the prisoner exchange.

  • Charles Krauthammer, a popular conservative says he supports President Barack Obama’s deal to bring Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl home. He also he would have made the same choice had the choice been his to make.
  • John Bellinger, who served as a national security adviser to President George W. Bush, said in a Fox News interview that he believed Obama did the right thing in its recovery of Bergdahl. He noted that because the war in Afghanistan is winding down – U.S. troops will be out by the end of 2016 – the administration would have had to release the five detainees soon anyway.

It is a good thing that Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl is home. There will be plenty of time to uncover all of the details regarding his capture and his mental and physical state. To all of the critics of this deal, there remains the fact that the detainees would have been released soon anyway. Where would they have gone when released? At least the United States received something in exchange for them. For those that are budget conscious, less taxpayer money will be spent for the care of those detainees and for those concerned about future attacks on Americans you can rest assured that those five detainees will be monitored closely. So I encourage everyone to sit back, relax and celebrate the fact that the final prisoner of war in Afghanistan is safe.



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