“Remember, to Democrats ‘Swift-boating‘ doesn’t mean ‘Telling people accurate, yet inconvenient, details about a candidate’s military record.’ To them that term means ‘lying.’ Which is an absolutely fascinating thing for the White House to say about what appears to be a nigh-universal reaction from the US military,” Moe Lane writes today.
As Moe notes, what’s really fascinating is that this is going out, via Chuck Todd, on NBC’s Today Show. “The Obama administration does not want this kind of coverage going out over what we still call ‘broadcast’ news; it’s extremely problematical for them.”
Allahpundit adds, “To protect a guy who allegedly served dishonorably, the White House and the left now have no choice but to go after the honorable ones:”
If Team O could produce just one witness willing to face the cameras and argue that Bergdahl was a good soldier who was probably taken against his will, it’d plant enough doubt in casual observers’ minds that this whole thing might be reduced to a he said/she said matter for many — even though there are at least six veterans already who’ve come forward to support the desertion theory. But they can’t find anyone to do it. It’s been a complete barrage of anti-Bergdahl witnesses on cable news since Monday morning. The State Department is so bereft of third-party support that they were forced last night to tell reporters to trust Bergdahl himself over his squad mates, as if a repatriated deserter wouldn’t have an incentive to lie about why he went missing upon his return.
Which brings us to Bryan Preston’s post at the PJ Tatler: “In Case You Missed It, Here’s Obama’s Hipster Spokeschick Accusing Bergdahl’s Squad Mates Of Lying:”
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“Megyn Kelly highlighted this fascinating exchange between the State Department’s hipster podium doofus, Marie Harf, and reporters who actually know a thing or two about the military and about Bowe Bergdahl,” Bryan writes. “You’ll notice in that her haste to call down the reporter, Harf ends up more or less siding with Bowe Bergdahl.”
At the Washington Examiner, Byron York asks, “What if Team Obama had just told the truth about Bowe Bergdahl?”
So why did the White House send National Security Adviser Susan Rice to the Sunday shows to claim that Bergdahl “served the United States with honor and distinction”?
It wasn’t necessary. Rice, speaking for the White House, could have said something to the effect that “Bowe Bergdahl is a troubled young man who made a terrible mistake. Nevertheless, he is an American soldier, and the United States wants him back. The president had a difficult decision to make in balancing the release of the Taliban detainees with this country’s longstanding policy of not leaving U.S. forces behind in a war zone, no matter the circumstances.”
That would not have quieted the controversy over the Taliban trade; critics would still maintain it was a terrible precedent and will increase the danger to America and its allies around the world. And it would not have quieted the controversy over the administration’s decision not to inform Congress about the Taliban release, as specifically required by law. Lawmakers — including some in the president’s party — would still complain about that.
But it would have denied the administration’s critics a devastatingly effective argument. First, President Obama himself appeared with Bergdahl’s parents in rare Saturday remarks in the White House Rose Garden. And then Rice — who had been asked specifically about the circumstances of Bergdahl’s disappearance — said, “He served the United States with honor and distinction.”
In another Sunday appearance, on CNN, Rice suggested Bergdahl had been “captured … on the battlefield” — a claim backed up by none of Bergdahl’s fellow soldiers with him the night he disappeared. The military fully investigated the Bergdahl case in the months after he disappeared in 2009. The investigation reportedly concluded that he had willfully abandoned his post.
Now, top Army officials say there will be a new “comprehensive, coordinated” investigation to “better learn from [Bergdahl] the circumstances of his disappearance and captivity,” according to Army Secretary John McHugh. In other words, Bergdahl served with so much honor, and so much distinction, that he is going to be investigated for possible desertion charges.
What Peggy Noonan wrote last week regarding the (still ongoing) V.A Scandal also applies — perhaps even more so — to the MSM and the current White House spin efforts:
The administration’s sharpest attention goes to public relations, not reality. This time even their spin has failed. They didn’t fully apprehend the moment or the media landscape. Media people, cable and mainstream, are very, very interested in showing their respect for and engagement with veterans. They made a mistake with the veterans of Vietnam; they’ll never make it again. They like being helpful to heroes, and it does them good to be associated with regular men and women who’ve served. Vets, their friends and families comprise a significant share of the audience. The VA scandal not only allows journalists to stand up for vets, it allows them to demonstrate, at just the right moment—in the waning years of the administration, with the president’s numbers low and his standing wobbly—a certain detachment from Mr. Obama’s fortunes. They’re independent.
And it looks particularly ugly when the Politico’s Roger Simon (not our Roger L. Simon, just a reminder) attacks “Bergdahl Detractors as Stressed-Out Soldiers,” as Newsbusters notes, or 9/11 Truther, self-admitted Communist and former Obama “Green” “Czar” turned CNN spokesman Van Jones attacks soldiers speaking out against Bergdahl as part of the GOP’s “orchestrated smear campaign,” in addition to the State Department’s Marie Harf, and Chuck Todd’s White House source.
In his famous 2007 speech to the Heritage Foundation, veteran TV writer Evan Sayet described himself as being transformed from an establishment Hollywood liberal into a “9/13 Republican” as a result, not just of what he saw on TV on September 11th, but from the punitive, “yeah, 3000 people died, but America had it coming, man” reaction of his leftwing friends the following day, as transcribed here:
Imagine being in a restaurant with an old friend, and you’re catching up, and suddenly he blurts out: “I hate my wife.” And you kind of chuckle to yourself because he says it everytime you’re together and you know he doesn’t hate his wife — they’ve been together for 35 years, he loves his daughters and they’re just like her — no, he doesn’t hate his wife. And you’re having some dinner and you look out the window and you spot his wife out the window, and she’s being beaten up, and you grab your friend and you say, “C’mon, c’mon, let’s help her, let’s help your wife!” and he says, “Nah, I’m sure she deserves it.”
In that moment it dawns on you: He really does hate his wife.
Well, that’s what 9/11 was to me.
Judging by the harsh reaction that the Obama administration has gotten this week from such previously reliable quarters as CNN (with the exception of Van Jones’ meltdown), NBC, the New York Times and even NPR, this was the week that the scales seemed to have fallen from the eyes of a number of Obama’s supporters that his administration, from the top man down, really is chockablock full of punitive, anti-American leftists who believe that the proper role of the military is to “suck it up and salute.” Or at least, that’s how the MSM is currently acting, until today’s version of the Journolist can supply the proper “Norman, Coordinate!” talking points for everything to make sense and for everything to once again be the Republicans’ fault.
Related: “Don’t attribute to stupidity that which can be adequately explained by malice.”