Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl can expect a buoyant homecoming after five years in Taliban hands, but those in the government who worked for his release face mounting questions over the prisoner swap that won his freedom.
Even in the first hours of Bergdahl's handoff to U.S. special forces in eastern Afghanistan, it was clear this would not be an uncomplicated yellow-ribbon celebration. Five terrorist suspects also walked free, stirring a debate in Washington over whether the exchange will heighten the risk of other Americans being snatched as bargaining chips and whether the released detainees — several senior Taliban figures among them — would find their way back to the fight.
U.S. officials said Sunday that Bergdahl's health and safety appeared in jeopardy, prompting rapid action to secure his release. "Had we waited and lost him," said national security adviser Susan Rice, "I don't think anybody would have forgiven the United States government."
The hearkens back to the firestorm Republicans raised back in the early 1980s, when it was revealed that President Ronald Reagan first demanded the Iranians hold Americans hostage until after the Presidential election that saw him garner the office, then traded them for arms to a nation we had embargoed from any materiel dealings with us.
Oh wait…! I forgot! There was none! Somehow the concerns that other Americans might be targeted were non-existent, despite the fact that the Iranians had far more at stake than the Taliban does. Somehow the concern that we were endangering American lives both here and abroad disappeared into the great gasball of Republican bloviating. Somehow the fact that no fewer than thirteen Reagan administration officials and employees were indicted for their involvement in this treasonous scandal eluded the Republican laser-like focus that seems to encapsulate their whole “breathholding until blue” over Benghazi and a dying American soldier.
Add this to the bullcrap pile that includes the administration of the VA (a true tragedy but one in which Republicans are deeply involved with on the wrong side) and you begin to see why the Republicans don’t care about running the country as much as running their mouths.