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Bergdahl: Informed Not Inflamed Look

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John Daly

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Let’s discuss the Bowe Bergdahl story. He is the young soldier released by the Taliban in exchange for 5 prisoners at Gitmo.

There is some evidence that Bergdahl deserted after being upset with US military operations.  That has led to a lot of controversy.  And it has split the country.

Here’s my take.

First, read two good articles.  The first is a New York Times piece out today examining if Bergdahl’s walking away or his abduction led to the 6 deaths of fellow soldiers.  In short, the Times says as in war details are murky.  So blaming Bergdahl for those deaths is a bit of stretch.

The second piece was written in May of 2012 by Michael Hastings in Rolling Stone.  Hastings is the journalist who died in a car crash last year after his expose in Rolling Stone brought down General Stanley McCrystal.  Hastings profile of Bergdahl is very revealing.  It is worth the read to understand the psyche of this 20-something we sent off to the horrors of war.

The other half of us don’t want those years of fighting terrorists over there to go to waste.  There is still the fear of the Taliban controlling Afghanistan again and maybe the nuclear weapons of Pakistan.

And again, I am siding with the President here.  We need to keep some troops and advisers in that region – just for that reason.  Granted, Obama may be playing both sides here – getting us out of combat but keeping our presence there.

The Bergdahl story is going to get bigger.  It is also going to cause a lot of anger and emotion.  Work to defuse that while understanding the feelings on both sides.  However, let’s all wait for the facts.

 

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