Wednesday, June 18, 2014
Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl / This Veteran's Opinion (Part 2)
One of the positive aspects of having a blog is that, occasionally, your comments strike a chord with a reader; and they, in turn, offer their own opinion – which I always welcome.
Regarding Bowe Bergdahl, ‘Anonymous’ made the following points:
Point #1: Her husband was a “Marine Scout in Vietnam,” fought in many battles, came home injured – and he does not agree with my assessment of what Bergdahl’s final punishment or disposition should be – that it should be much more severe – and that he considers Berdahl’s acts to be desertion in time of war, and probably treason. The former Marine feels that Bergdahl should, at minimum, spend significant time in prison.
Point #2: Anonymous said that she has a problem with the trade for Bergdahl; the five for one swap, that she was bothered by trading five “Muslim Extremists” for Bergdahl. Although, she seemed to agree that it is a good thing that Bergdahl has been ‘recovered’ from the Muslim extremists. Furthermore, she expressed concern that the extremists seemed to have dictated the circumstances of Bergdahl’s release from captivity.
Anonymous, I hope I was able to summarize your principal points. For those who wish to read the entire comment from this lady, they can read it under my earlier post on Bergdahl.
But, here are my thoughts…
Your husband is probably right. Perhaps, my recommendation was a little lenient under the circumstances. Moreover, additional information, aggravating information, seems to be materializing on almost a daily basis. Now, believe it or not, Hollywood is planning to make a movie about Bergdahl’s life and adventures. It kind of makes one sick to their stomach; especially in that almost none of the Hollywood types have ever served in the military and the movie is sure to be a sympathetic rendition.
OK, in my initial post on this subject, I attempted to skirt the political aspects of this case; but they may be becoming increasingly relevant. I swallowed hard when Susan Rice, the President’s National Security Advisor, described Bergdahl’s military service in Afghanistan as him having served “with honor and distinction.” Ms. Rice is, in my opinion, little more than the President’s ‘groupie.’ Yes, I know she’s smart. But, look at her closely. She is a ‘Stepford’ politician (remember the motion picture, The Stepford Wives which was based on a novel by Ira Levin). So, we shouldn’t be shocked by what Susan Rice has simply been programed to say.
Regarding the five-for-one trade, that’s no surprise. Western countries are always on the short-end when it comes to trading prisoners. Why? Maybe, it’s because we value life more than they do. Look at the Israelis, they sometimes trade hundreds of prisoners for the return of one of theirs. In this instance, maybe the Muslim extremists currently sense American weakness or vulnerability.
Anonymous, historically speaking, as your husband may recall, President Carter, in 1977, pardoned hundreds-of-thousands of ‘draft dodgers,’ as well as approximately 1000 military deserters. So, it is very likely that if there is too much pushback directed at Bergdahl, President Obama will jump in with a sugar-coated pardon of his own.
For me, personally, I wish it would just go away. I would like Bergdahl to return to Hailey, Idaho; and that I’d never hear about him again. Will he live out the remainder of his life in disgrace? No, I doubt it. This country swims in apologists who will continue to rationalize the actions of ‘deserters’ or other serious criminal offenders. Now there is an increasing political movement to give voting rights back to convicted felons and current prisoners. After all, they have political opinions too and an inalienable right to participate (attempt at sarcasm). (Incidentally, this challenge is mostly pushed forward by Democrats. Surprised? Well, statistics show that criminals, when not otherwise occupied, predominantly vote Democrat.)
‘Honor and distinction,’ ‘right and wrong,’ ‘harmful actions should warrant severe consequences,’ are concepts that have already been nearly rationalized out of existence. I’m not sure what the words even mean anymore. Maybe, they actually mean nothing? It just depends. Everything is relative and subject to a nuanced interpretation. Right? Am I as guilty of this as the next guy? Yes, I probably am.