President Obama's Exceptionally Productive Week
In the midst of America grappling with the reality that veterans are safer on the battlefield than on a VA hospital waiting list, on Memorial Day, Barack Obama, lover of all things military, flew to Kabul to surprise our U.S. servicemen and women.
After Obama arrived at the troop rally at Bagram air base, Afghani President Hamid Karzai, who in 2008 pinned a medal on George W. Bush’s chest at the presidential palace in Kabul, sent word that because it was such short notice he would not be meeting with the U.S. president.
Looking spiffy in a brown bomber jacket festooned with American flags, the guy who effectively barred veterans from entering the WWII Memorial during the sequester promised the troops that their well-being was of the utmost concern: “We’re going to stay strong by taking care of our wounded warriors and our veterans. Because helping our wounded warriors and veterans heal isn’t just a promise, it’s a sacred obligation.”
To announce the impromptu drop-in, a press aide with the Obama administration -- with exactly the level of competence you would expect -- somehow forgot to remove the name of the top CIA operative in Afghanistan from the list of attendees provided to the media, putting the station chief’s life at risk.
So while Obama dazzled our servicemen and women with his awesomeness, his administration simultaneously ‘damaged intelligence operations’ and identified the person working undercover to thwart the Taliban’s plans to resume training al Qaeda.
A few days later Obama shared his vision to withdraw all 9,800 troops from Afghanistan and get those guys and gals home and onto a VA waiting list by the end of 2014, as well as by 2016 drawing down every service member remaining in the soon-to-be Taliban-repossessed country.
And if that weren’t enough action for one week, without notifying Congress and eager to get a soldier with a shady past released, the Obama administration suddenly thought it was a great time to make a ‘share the wealth’ exchange. America got back U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, rumored to have spent five years teaching the Taliban bomb-making techniques and infantry tactics, and the Taliban got back five senior leaders from Guantanamo Bay.
Meanwhile, Iranian/American pastor Saeed Abedini sits in an Iranian prison where he’s being intermittently beaten for wanting to establish a Christian orphanage and Marine Reservist Andrew Tahmooressi remains shackled to a bed in Mexico after making a wrong turn into Tijuana with lawful guns in his truck.
Clearly, in Barack Obama’s “sacred obligation” economy, when it comes to exchanging prisoners, the value of Bowe Bergdahl outweighs the value of two men falsely imprisoned, one a Christian pastor, father, and husband, the other a dedicated veteran of two tours of duty in Afghanistan.
Barack Obama has not yet called Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto to appeal for Tahmooressi’s release. That’s likely because the president has been so focused on freeing Taliban terrorists and bringing home a purported Taliban sympathizer that he just can’t spare the time.
House Armed Services Committee Chairman Howard P. McKeon (R-CA) and ranking Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee James M. Inhofe (R-OK) issued a joint statement pointing out that because of the 5-for-1 trade-off, “Our terrorist adversaries now have a strong incentive to capture Americans. That incentive will put our forces in Afghanistan and around the world at even greater risk.”
Then, to add still more intrigue to the week of exciting events, Robert Bergdahl, Bowe’s dad, who enjoys passing along pro-Taliban anti-American “invader” tweets for Taliban spokesperson Abdulqahar Balkhi and whose Twitter feed is an odd mix of anti-American and anti-war sentiments, Bible verses, strange quotes, and hippie-dippy tree-hugging weirdness, took it upon himself to celebrate his son’s release by sending a Tweet to the spokesman for his son’s captors.
The Tweet read: “@ABalkhi I am still working to free all Guantanamo prisoners. God will repay for the death of every Afghan child, Ameen [sic].” The Tweet was quickly deleted, but not before being captured on the Twitchy feed.
Bergdahl the elder’s correspondence with the Taliban’s spokesperson certainly coincides with Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl’s alleged sentiments prior to his ‘capture.’ According to emails quoted in Rolling Stone magazine, Bowe told his parents he was “ashamed to even be American,” and that he was disgusted with the U.S. mission in Afghanistan and with the Army.
And all this drama happened the very same week Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric Shinseki stepped down and White House Press Secretary Jay Carney decided to pass the baton to a more energetic lackey.
So there goes Obama, breaking the law -- again -- by refusing to give Congress the required 30-day notice before rescuing the soldier son of a man who appears to be Taliban-sympathetic -- a soldier son who said, “The horror that is America is disgusting” and dreamt of walking to Pakistan.
To wrap up this extremely productive week, Barack Obama managed to see to it that America-hating Bowe Bergdahl was exchanged for some of the most dangerous Taliban commanders in U.S. custody. Thanks to the president, the Gitmo Five are now free to make their way west, where they can board a Greyhound bus from Mexico to Arizona, illegally join the U.S. military, or even make history next September 11th.
Jeannie hosts a blog at www.jeannie-ology.com