Cennamology Chief Editor
As the release of Bowe Bergdahl continues to engulf the media, and political debate, questions have arisen concerning the circumstances of Bergdahl's disappearance.
Further criticism has be lobbed on the Obama administration for negotiating the release of Sgt. Bergdahl, as the sergeant has been accused of deserting his post, leading to his capture. Many have said that because Bergdahl may be guilty of desertion, he did not deserve being rescued in exchange for the five Taliban officials that were sent to Qatar to ensure Bergdahl's safety. Six men lost their lives searching for him.
Here's the thing: whether Bergdahl was a deserter or not is irrelevant as to whether the Defense Department should have taken all means necessary to ensure his release. At the end of the day, he is still an American and, if the desertion accusations turn out to be true, he deserves to be tried in American courts.
Therefore, as these two quotes indicate, the conditions surrounding a soldier's disappearance do not influence whether or not your fellow unit members come looking for you. Six men died looking for Bergdahl and if it turns out that he did desert his post, than their deaths will be on his conscience. The president did not dishonor those who died by bringing Bergdahl home.
Republicans are trying to use the desertion accusations against Bergdahl as fuel for their fire in their claims that Obama acted illegally in bringing him home. I wonder if they expect Obama to just leave his fate up to the Taliban instead of American courts. Apparently, Republicans in Congress believe that in order for your country to save you if you're in danger abroad, you must have a squeaky clean record and be completely free of sin. I am not aware of any such requirement legally in existence.
Also, missing soldiers have never been subject to a character check before being rescued in the past. Just because Bergdahl may have been a deserter does not mean, as conservative blowhard Bill Kristol says "is not worth rescuing." Bergdahl is an American, a soldier, and a human being. Bergdahl should not be placed under trial by the media before being rescued.
As I pointed out in my post yesterday, Republicans would not be trying to use Bergdahl's desertion accusations if one of their own brought him home. This is just the latest bullet point in their never-ending quest to tarnish the president with whatever they can find. If Bergdahl did desert his post, he should be charged in America as mandated by the Constitution, not abandoned abroad.
Ultimately it is not Bergdahl's patriotism that the Republicans want put on trial. It is President Obama's, whose patriotism Republicans have been questioning since the day he started his 2008 presidential campaign.