Benedict Arnold chose to put on the uniform, too. Did he serve with 'honour and distinction,' too?
Col Ralph Peters nails it, again:
But won’t the brass stand up for fairness, military discipline, and justice? The bitter truth is that they haven’t thus far. Our generals knew within days of Bergdahl’s abandonment of his post that the evidence was overwhelming that he had deserted (ask them, under oath). But they made the decision to keep it quiet. The initial reason General Petraeus gave to me just days after Bergdahl walked off was that the military wished to shield Bergdahl’s parents.Here’s where it gets interesting and ugly. The “noble POW” story took off politically. Commander after commander played along (as did Congress). Worse, the Army itself tried to beatify Bergdahl as some sort of hero-martyr to the troops, printing up solidarity posters and even creating life-size pasteboard cutouts of Bergdahl. Naturally, the troops knew it was BS (you can’t fool Private Snuffy very long, and word soon gets around). The agitprop was amateurish but outrageous (majors put up the posters, and sergeants rolled their eyes). Every officer involved in that effort should be relieved of duty.
It’s time for the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Martin Dempsey, to man up. He inherited this Big Lie, but he shouldn’t pass it on. It’s his duty to follow the legal orders of our commander-in-chief, but it’s not his duty to provide cover for the president’s political shenanigans. As for Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, he’s clearly a lost cause on this case, with his claim that you can’t prove that any soldiers died because of Bergdahl, even though they were killed while the massive search for Bergdahl was underway and they died where they otherwise would not have been. (Dear Secretary Hagel: From one former sergeant to another former sergeant, show a glimmer of decency. You’re acting like some damned officer.)
As for President Obama himself, there’s far more news to tell. For all his pretensions about his regard for the troops, this man has lavished vastly more attention on the family of a deserter than any other military family has ever received from him (just as Bergdahl is getting more intensive medical attention than a genuine hero would). And you’re thinking, “Rose Garden,” right? But this has gone on for years, with a full colonel or brigadier general ordered to report to the Bergdahl family every three to six months with an update about their son. Has the White House taken so great an interest in the families of those who’ve been gravely wounded in the line of duty? Or of those who died? No, it has not. The White House fell in love with a family clearly several raisins short of a full bowl of granola. Not despite their son’s desertion, but because of it.
Mr. and Mrs. Bergdahl, too, have been Obama’s pawns. Our outrage should aim at the president, not them.
Of course, Private Bergdahl himself is the perfect soldier for those whose concept of our military was formed by Oliver Stone movies. Reportedly disillusioned with the war, he just walks away, a model of nobility, to seek out the enemy and find common ground. Bergdahl is a hero — for everyone on the left who despises our military. It’s a shame Sean Penn’s too old to play the role.
Meanwhile, with a straight face, Obama and his fellow travelers in the White House and media caution us not to “pre-judge” Bergdahl. That would have been a more credible plea before the president and his advisers pre-judged Bergdahl as a hero.
In closing, let me paraphrase the words of a fine U.S. Army lawyer from the past: “Mr. President, have you no shame?”
Amen, Col Peters.