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Statement by the President on Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl

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How did 6 die after Bowe Bergdahl's disappearance?

By Jake Tapper, CNN

updated 7:54 AM EDT, Mon June 9, 2014


(CNN) -- Much attention has been given to the claim made by the former platoonmates of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl that he is partly to blame for the deaths of six soldiers who were killed in the months after Bergdahl disappeared.


Some soldiers have gone so far as to say the six died while searching for Bergdahl. Others say he is indirectly to blame -- after Bergdahl vanished, essentially every operation became a mission to find their lost colleague in one way or another, they say.


"I can't really say I blame Bergdahl to the fullest extent," former Staff Sgt. Justin Gerleve, Bergdahl's squad leader, told CNN last week, "but if he wouldn't have deserted us, these soldiers very well could have been in a different place at a different time, rather than the place at the time of their death."


Interviews with soldiers familiar with the specific missions in which the six died suggest the charge is complicated -- but not without merit given how much the 501st Parachute Infantry Regiment became focused on "PR" -- Scissors-32x32.png

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Filed under: General — Dana @ 8:01 am

[guest post by Dana]


Recently the Los Angeles Times set out to reassure us that most of the five released detainees from Guantanamo have less than hard-core pasts, so there’s no real reason for concern.


And, of the five, Khairulla Khairkhwa was just another friendly open-minded guy. From the article, according to journalist Rahimullah Yusufzai, who was in western Afghanistan in the late 1990′s:


At the provincial government offices, he saw a parade of local clerics come to meet the governor, founding Taliban member Khairullah Khairkhwa, who greeted them in the local Persian, a language most of his comrades didn’t speak.


“He knew these people didn’t really support the Taliban, so he made an extra effort,” said Yusufzai, who has covered Afghanistan for three decades. “He was a friendly man and did not try to force his views on you.”


Khairkhwa was arrested by the Pakistanis and transferred in 2002 to Guantanamo. Just another friendly guy.


To support this view, the LAT cites Alex Strick van Linschoten, who has co-written three books on the Taliban. He believes that because the five released detainees are getting on in years there’s not much reason to be concerned.


It’s [their release] a boost Scissors-32x32.png

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Bergdahl Trade Racist?

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:26 am

Nicole Mullen:


. . . I’m the only one who noticed how racist the Bergdahl trade was.


I want to make it clear that I’m not criticizing the president for his decision to rescue Bergdahl, but there’s something that the white left is afraid to talk about here. When Obama traded five men of color for one white man – he made a very clear statement about race.

. . . .

Think for a second – if Bush had made that trade, is there any doubt that we would be calling him out for how outrageously racist it was? If a white man had traded five brown men for one white man, we would be quick to see it for what it was – an affirmation of white privilege and power. But, because Obama is a man of color himself, it seems as if no one noticed.


I can only imagine the struggle Obama, a man of people of color, must have felt as he authorized that trade. He was betraying himself – the black part of himself – while simultaneously affirming the privilege and power structures inherent in the white part of himself. The courage it took to make that decision is remarkable, and again, I feel like he made the right choice, but we should really look at this situation and use it as a way to reflect on our cultural attitudes to the devaluation and reductive characterization of colorful men that we objectify through cisrace projections of cultural self-worth. Scissors-32x32.png

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