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Psaki: The US Doesn’t Work With Terrorists, But Bergdahl Was Different

State Department Spokesperson Jen Psaki said that while the US doesn’t make concessions to terrorists, there are “certain circumstances,” like Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, where the policy is different on Thursday’s “New Day” on CNN.

During a discussion on Jordan’s work to free one of its pilots who had been taken hostage by ISIS, she stated, “our view and our position as the united states government is that we don’t make concessions to terrorists. Now there are certain circumstances, and you’ve been talking a little bit about Bowe Bergdahl this morning, where he was a member of the military, someone who had volunteered to serve his country, and we don’t leave our men and women behind. We took steps to bring him home”

Later, anchor Alisyn Camerota pressed on this point, saying “we are in a bit of a conundrum, because as you’ve said, the US never negotiates with terrorists, except those times that we do, such as the Bowe Bergdahl situation with the Taliban. I mean, it’s hard for us to have truly the high moral ground on this, isn’t it?” Psaki objected, arguing that such a characterization was “unfair,” and “we have positions for a reason, it’s not just, just to have the position. We believe that when you make concessions to terrorists it puts more American citizens at risk, paying ransoms and negotiating can do that. Now we have a policy, of course, for the men and women who volunteer to serve our country and proudly do that around the world. I don’t think anyone is suggesting we should leave them behind.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett

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