Afghan victims of Taliban atrocities are giving Obama’s decision to release 5 Taliban commanders in exchange for American deserter, Bowe Bergdahl, an unambiguous thumbs down.
The five are accused of terrorizing “large swathes of Afghanistan and carrying out atrocities which have left thousands of people dead.”
Among them is Mohammad Fazl, who is believed to be the Taliban army chief of staff and is reported to have played a key role on the assault on Afghanistan’s Shomali plains in 1999.
The Afghanistan Justice Project, an independent research and advocacy organisation, has documented claims that Fazl presided over the execution of surrendering fighters, as well as the torching of houses, vineyards and orchards across the region.
Mohammad Arif, who was among tens of thousands forced to flee, told news agency AFP: “It was a massacre.
“The Taliban only know how to kill, maim and plunder.
“Why is the US releasing the enemies of peace, the enemies of Afghanistan?”
It’s a question a lot of people are asking on both sides of the aisle.
Another question is why the Haqqani Network freed Bergdahl after holding him captive for five years, in exchange for the release of Taliban prisoners. The Taliban and Haqqani networks are reportedly often at odds, and the Haqqani network isn’t known to negotiate unless money is involved.
A senior intelligence official with intimate knowledge of the years-long effort to locate and rescue Bergdahl told the Washington Free Beacon that the details of that exchange do not add up.The official, who requested anonymity because he is not authorized to speak to the press, speculated that a cash ransom was paid to the Haqqani Network to get the group to free the prisoner.The Obama administration reportedly considered offering cash for his release as late as December 2013. The State Department has repeatedly refused to say whether the deal that released Bergdahl involved any cash payment.The ransom plan was reportedly abandoned, but the intelligence official insisted that there is reason to believe that cash changed hands as part of the deal.“The Haqqanis could give a rat’s ass about prisoners,” the official said, referring to the Haqqani Network, a designated terrorist group in Afghanistan and Pakistan, and the five Guantanamo Bay prisoners who were freed in exchange for Bergdahl’s release.“The people that are holding Bergdahl want[ed] cash and someone paid it to them,” he said.
If we not only traded the five worst terrorists at Gitmo, but paid Haqqani terrorists a ransom to boot – all to secure the release of a deserter who may or may not have collaborated with the enemy – we have more than a garden-variety Obama scandal on our hands.
And if we find out without a doubt that Bergdahl did indeed engage in treason against his country, what does that make Obama and his enablers, who bypassed congress to secure his release?