Was Bergdahl Prisoner Swap a Bad Deal for America?

A still from a Taliban video shows Bowe Bergdahl (Reuters)
A still from a Taliban video shows Bowe Bergdahl (Reuters)

Political fallout is growing over the weekend release of Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdhal in exchange for five Taliban leaders from Guantanamo Bay.

The circumstances surrounding Bergdhal’s capture by Taliban forces in Afghanistan five years ago are murky at best. His fellow soldiers are voicing concern, saying he was only captured after willingly leaving base without his weapon.

Bergdahl’s former team leader Evan Buetow told reporters Bergdhal “walked away. He talked to other platoon members. He talked about ‘I just want to go over those mountains.'”

The revelations only add to growing concerns the prisoner swap was a bad deal for America. The Taliban fighters freed in the swap were sent to Qatar, where the government has only imposed a one-year travel ban.

Critics say the move violates America’s long-standing policy of not negotiating with terrorists.

“You have to be concerned not only about the principle of negotiating with terrorists, but the five who were released,” Rep. Mac Thornberry, R-Texas, told reporters.

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