Why Team Obama Was Blindsided by the Bergdahl Backlash

Article posted on June 6th, 2014 by WhatAmIMissingHere

Bowe Bergdahl Obama by Bob Englehart, The Hartford Courant

EDITOR’S COMMENT: Of the literally hundreds of articles and comments that I’ve read this week trying to get a glimpse into President Obama’s reasoning or lack of reasoning for making this Taliban/terrorists for Bergdahl prisoner swap, the one commentary that stands out is one written for National Review Online by former Army Lt. Col. Ralph Peters entitled “Why Team Obama Was Blindsided by the Bergdahl Backlash”, in which he attributes President Obama’s decision to the basic ‘culture clash’ that exists between the civilians running the White House and the military.

Here are some of his insightful comments:

Congratulations, Mr. President! And identical congrats to your sorcerer’s apprentice, National Security Adviser Susan Rice. By trying to sell him as an American hero, you’ve turned a deserter already despised by soldiers in the know into quite possibly the most-hated individual soldier in the history of our military.

I have never witnessed such outrage from our troops.

Both President Obama and Ms. Rice seem to think that the crime of desertion in wartime is kind of like skipping class. They have no idea of how great a sin desertion in the face of the enemy is to those in our military. The only worse sin is to side actively with the enemy and kill your brothers in arms. This is not sleeping in on Monday morning and ducking Gender Studies 101.

But compassion, please! The president and all the president’s men and women are not alone. Our media elite — where it’s a rare bird who bothered to serve in uniform — instantly became experts on military justice. Of earnest mien and blithe assumption, one talking head after another announced that “we always try to rescue our troops, even deserters.”

This is a fundamental culture clash. Team Obama and its base cannot comprehend the values still cherished by those young Americans “so dumb” they joined the Army instead of going to prep school and then to Harvard. Values such as duty, honor, country, physical courage, and loyalty to your brothers and sisters in arms have no place in Obama World. (Military people don’t necessarily all like each other, but they know they can depend on each other in battle — the sacred trust Bergdahl violated.)

President Obama did this to himself (and to Bergdahl). This beautifully educated man, who never tires of letting us know how much smarter he is than the rest of us, never stopped to consider that our troops and their families might have been offended by their commander-in-chief staging a love-fest at the White House to celebrate trading five top terrorists for one deserter and featuring not the families of those soldiers (at least six of them) who died in the efforts to find and free Bergdahl, but, instead, giving a starring role on the international stage to Pa Taliban …    (my emphasis)

You can read all of Ralph Peters’ comments from National Review Online here.

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