Why was the Bergdahl backlash worse than the Obama administration expected? At the Breitbart Conversation group blog, John Hayward, the source of our headline above, writes:
I think what surprised them is how quickly the American public has turned skeptical about this deal, because Obama wanted some backlash – he wanted Republicans to make over-the-top criticisms of the deal, so the Pajama Boy platoon could jump on them and start hammering out those “GOP overreach” stories, painting Republicans as political hacks and hypocrites for daring to say a bad word about the rescue of a captive American.
The element that I think blindsided Obama was the negative feedback from military people, who have the credibility to make the public think about both sides of this trade in a skeptical way. That wouldn’t be surprising, since I doubt very many people in this White House know, or care, very much about what the U.S. military community thinks. They assumed the troops would zip it while Obama took his victory lap for rescuing the last POW in Afghanistan.
It’s also not surprising that the White House overplayed its hand, sending Benghazi fabulist Susan Rice – who snotty Beltway insiders don’t realize is one of the least credible people in America to informed members of the public – to falsely claim Bergdahl was captured in battlefield action. They’ve even be forced to portray the Taliban as something other than a terrorist organization, to justify cutting a deal with them.
Hayward’s post was written yesterday. Today we learn — from the New York Times — that, as Allahpundit summarizes at Hot Air, “Bergdahl left a note saying that he was deserting.” As Allah asks, “Which would be worse: If Obama didn’t know about the note before making the swap, or if he did know and went ahead with it anyway?”
Want worse? Here’s worse, if this report from Fox News’ Jen Griffin pans out:
Great reporting from @JenGriffinFNC – new report: Berghdal left behind a note renouncing American citizenship…developing…
— Jenna Lee (@Jennafnc) June 3, 2014
Jim Treacher rounds up the response from the professional left on the administration’s Berghdal debacle, which basically boils down to, “Republicans SUCK, MAAAAAAN!!!!1!!!” But as Jim writes in response: “As Sonny Bunch points out, a lot of the information these lefties are trying to deny — being the Bergdahl deniers they are — is coming from left-leaning sources like Rolling Stone and Time Magazine. The ol’ ‘Blame the Republicans’ game is all they’ve got, though, so let them play.”
Update: Don’t miss this Photoshop by Mad Magazine: “Trading Private Bergdahl.”
More: “Taliban claim captured U.S. solider has converted to Islam and is teaching its fighters bomb-making skills,” a London Daily Mail headline read in August of 2010. Two guesses as to who the captured U.S. solider was.
And Jim Geraghty would like an apology from Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT):
Read the whole thing.