Obama Was For Notifying Congress About A Deal For Bergdahl Before He Was Against It
John McCain isn’t the only one who’s done a little flip-flopping on the whole issue of swapping Taliban Prisoners for Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl in recent years. Consider this from a White House Press Briefing on June 21, 2013:
Q Jay, going to back to Afghanistan, the Taliban has offered to release Bowe Bergdahl in exchange for five members of the Taliban who are currently being held at Guantanamo Bay. Is this something that the administration is considering? Is this something that the President would agree to?
MR. CARNEY: What I can tell you is that the main dialogue that we support is the dialogue between Afghans — between the Taliban and the Afghan government. However, there are some issues that we would like to discuss with the Taliban directly, and this includes the safe return of Sergeant Bergdahl, who has been gone for far too long.
We continue to call for and work toward his safe and immediate release. We cannot discuss all the details of our efforts, but there should be no doubt that on a daily basis we are continuing to pursue — using our military, intelligence and diplomatic tools — the effort to return him home safely. And our hearts are with the Bergdahl family.
With regard to the transfer of Taliban detainees from Guantanamo Bay, we have made — the United States has not made the decision to do that, though we do expect the Taliban to raise this issue in our discussion, if and when those discussions happen.
As we have long said, however, we would not make any decisions about transfer of any detainees without consulting with Congress and without doing so in accordance with U.S. law.
Q So you haven’t ruled it out?
MR. CARNEY: I’m simply saying that — first of all, you have to separate the two issues. We are focused on the return — the safe and immediate return of Sergeant Bergdahl, and we continue to use the tools at our disposal to help bring that about.
We also expect the Taliban to raise the issue of their detainees in discussions that we have with them if those discussions take place. And at this time we’ve made no decisions about the transfer of detainees. And in accordance with law, we would be consulting with Congress should we make any decisions about that. So we remain committed to the closure of Guantanamo Bay, as you know. But separate from that on these specific issues about individual detainees, that would be a process that is done in accordance with law.
Yes, yes, I know. Expecting consistency in politics is probably naive. However, if our leaders are going to be this blatant about their flip-flopping one wonders why they bother making promises at all.
H/T: Weekly Standard