Former Bush administration official, John Bellinger made a great case for supporting President Obama's decision to swap five Taliban prisoners for the lone U.S. POW. In a refreshing interview, he told Fox News' Happening Now, that since the war was winding down and they couldn't have tried the Afghanistan prisoners in US courts, their only option was to free them eventually so making the trade made sense and and that George Bush would have made the same decision.
A former Bush administration official broke with Republicans on Tuesday to defend President Obama’s prisoner exchange, arguing that since “the war in Afghanistan is winding down,” the United States would be required to return prisoners held at Guantanamo Bay back to Afghanistan.
“I don’t see how these particular Taliban officials could ever have been tried in the southern district of New York,” John Bellinger, who served as an adviser to President George W. Bush explained during an appearance on Fox News Tuesday. “They’re certainly some Al Qaeda detainees who committed actual terrorist acts against Americans who perhaps could have been tried in a federal court because they committed federal crimes, but these particular Taliban detainees I think could never have been tried in federal court.” Although some of the released prisoners posed a danger to the United States when they were captured in 2002, especially toward soldiers serving in Afghanistan, several of the detainees did not commit crimes against Americans.
You won't find this interview highlighted on Fox News or any of their websites at this time, and that means it's important. It's nice to hear an objective voice from a former Bush adviser speak so candidly about the GOP led faux scandal. I imagine he's not trying to land a job at the Heritage Foundation as he stuck a dagger into the hearts of the Dick Cheney complainers by saying this:
“I’m not saying this is clearly an easy choice but frankly I think a Republican, a president of either party, Republican or Democratic, confronted with this opportunity to get back Sgt. Bergdahl, who is apparently in failing health, would have taken this opportunity to do this,” he added. “I think we would have made the same decision in the Bush administration.”
What Sgt. Bergdahl did or didn't do when he was captured makes no difference to this negotiation, as he clearly stated. I doubt you'll see Bellinger appear on Fox News again.