Congratulations, those of you who think you know all the inner workings of our government and the hearts and minds of President Obama, Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl and his father. His welcome home party has been canceled.
All you lovers-of-American due process who have decided Bergdahl deserved to die as a tortured POW, who believe Obama probably set the whole thing up because he’s secretly a Taliban sympathizer, good job. This soldier’s hometown is afraid to openly welcome him home.
Your mind is made up. He shouldn’t have due process within the military’s protocol, because YOU’VE already decided he is unworthy of anything but a rotting, torturous death at the hands of the Taliban.
You can spend days obsessing over details and portions of “evidence” that “prove” the position of your already-made-up-mind that Obama was negligent to free him in exchange for Guantanamo prisoners (to date, President Obama has freed 88, compared to more than 500 released by President Bush).
You can ignore the parts of the story that don’t fit your narrative (leadership problems in his unit, for example, that his parents thought they were being ignored by Obama because they’re Republican Ron Paul supporters, that top GOP leaders were supportive of an exchange until it became a political hot potato, the intentions and heart of a father doing everything within his limited reach to keep his son alive and get him home).
You can ignore these or explain them away with a shallow, self-satisfied explanation if that helps justify your hatred and judgment of our country’s leadership – hatred you somehow find patriotic and comforting.
It’s unfortunate that this man, who has clearly suffered much, is doomed to a marked, dishonorable future, regardless of the facts (that none of us actually know at this time). If he commits suicide (as do so many of our soldiers) as a result of his past trauma and, more likely, losing in the Court of Public Opinion before he could even set foot on U.S soil, how much more of a waste will this exchange have been?
I can relate on one point: I am not thrilled that *every single one* of our presidents of the last 20 years or so have acted in flagrant violation of U.S. laws surrounding military action. However, even at my lowest point of disgust for President Bush’s wars, I assumed he was surrounded with intelligent advisers and was privy to information I was not.
As for me, I’m going to leave any further investigations and potential punishment up to the proper authorities who have access to privileged information, and who I’m sure will be speaking to the Sgt soon. I’m going to celebrate from the heart of a parent, finally able to gratefully wrap arms around a long-lost son. And I will not doom him for a list of presumed offenses and malintent ascribed to him based upon spotty information.
‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost.’