Obama’s bad judgment begets bad outcomes and negative consequences.
President Obama was in such a hurry to release prisoners from Guantanamo that he let dangerous people go under the guise of helping a deserter. A speedy trial for soldier Bergdahl would have been accomplished by an in-the-field tribunal of military justice that would have verified and validated the obvious finding that Bergdahl had deserted his post under his own volition and was captured by the Taliban under possibly more incriminating circumstances.
An investigation could have been made before Bergdahl’s release such that the Commander-in-Chief would have known clearly that it appeared that Bergdahl had deserted, gone AWOL, and was subsequently captured by the enemy as he either tried to meet with the enemy or was apprehended by the Taliban.
In any event, Bergdahl’s release should not have happened by 1) negotiating with the enemy terrorists or 2) trading highly dangerous enemy combatants for an AWOL loser. That was inappropriate and disgraceful behavior by the president that was accompanied by terrible publicity stunts.
Therefore the charge against President Obama in this instance is that he acted hastily and dangerously to the detriment of America’s national security. He failed to uphold his oath to office to protect America. Can one try a president for terribly bad judgment?
No, the president cannot be tried for bad judgment, but he can be corralled by Congress, and this one is more than happy to oblige.
President Obama and Congress must address the fundamental circumstance about how to treat enemy combatants. Here are some recommendations:
Enemy combatants who are captured on the field of battle should be tried by a military court of justice as “enemy combatants”. If the military justice system needs further amendment to define and address enemy combatants then get that done immediately.
Enemy combatants should be assessed based upon their intelligence value and degree of cooperation with interrogators. If they are high value and cooperate, there might be leniency sparing the prisoner combatant from death. If they are high value and don’t cooperate, they may be retained for a longer time to allow for their changing their minds. Lower value combatants, whether cooperative or not should be executed swiftly. There should be minimal long term incarcerations in the process.
The location for incarceration need not be in Guantanamo or some far flung place. It could be on board a ship or at a U.S. Military base anywhere that is most convenient to the battlefield.
Now, Congress and the President should dispense with this matter in 60 days. Get it done.
“Bergdahl charged with desertion, faces Article 32
By Michelle Tan, Staff writer8:01 p.m. EDT March 25, 2015
The Army has charged Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl with desertion and misbehavior before the enemy, officials announced Wednesday.
Bergdahl, who spent five years as a captive under the Taliban before he was freed in a May 31 prisoner swap, will face an Article 32 preliminary hearing, said Col. Daniel King, a spokesman for Army Forces Command.
The decision by Gen. Mark Milley, commanding general of FORSCOM, comes after a review of the facts and findings from an extensive Army investigation to determine what, if any, actions should be taken against Bergdahl.”