And so it begins…
Stating an obvious repercussion of the Bowe Bergdahl-terrorist exchange, one well-placed Taliban commander told reporters that the move “has encouraged our people” to kidnap more American soldiers.
A Taliban commander close to the negotiations over the release of U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl told TIME Thursday that the deal made to secure Bergdahl’s release has made it more appealing for fighters to capture American soldiers and other high-value targets.
“It’s better to kidnap one person like Bergdahl than kidnapping hundreds of useless people,” the commander said, speaking by telephone on condition of anonymity because he is not authorized to speak to the media. “It has encouraged our people. Now everybody will work hard to capture such an important bird.”
The commander has been known to TIME for several years and has consistently supplied reliable information about Bergdahl’s captivity.
The terrorist release for Bergdahl is without a doubt a victory over America for the Taliban and other terrorist organizations. It lends credence to an observation made by Fox News Channel’s Charles Krauthammer on the inappropriateness of Obama’s “victory lap” last weekend when he announced the release of Bergdahl. From Fox News Insider:
Krauthammer said the mistake President Obama made was to celebrate the prisoner exchange. He told O’Reilly that the president’s press conference was part of his “arrogance” and “ignorance.”
In any hostage exchange, Krauthammer said the other side always gets the better deal.
“We put a premium on individual lives the way the other guys don’t. That’s the difference between a civilized society and a barbarous society. And we pay a high price for being civilized,” he said.
Aside from the obvious military victory in having high-ranking officials back in the fold, the move emboldens terrorist organizations to use hostages in a negotiation with the United States. Negotiations that Obama has never supported according to … Obama.
One day after the terrorist release was announced, Sen. Ted Cruz asked rhetorically:
What does this tell terrorists? That if you capture a U.S. soldier, you can trade that soldier for five terrorist prisoners?
The Taliban has now answered that question.
Howard Portnoy contributed to this report.
Cross-posted at the Mental Recession