The political firestorm over Bowe Bergdahl being exchanged for five Taliban leaders at Guantanamo Bay Detention Camp is unrelenting, and it is far from clear what the facts are, but yet, the right wing is in full swing on the attack, as they always are when it involves anything having to do with the policies and actions of the Barack Obama Administration!
Bergdahl may have been a deserter, and may have to face action by the US Army, if that is so, but that is far from clear at this point, and despite that, any move to bring troops home who are prisoners of war should be hailed, but not of course, when Barack Obama is the President, god forbid!
Ronald Reagan dealt with terrorists and evil forces in the Iran Contra scandal, and Israel has returned a thousand prisoners to the Palestinians for just one Israeli, live or dead, on the principle that they will do everything necessary to bring back their military forces, who are imprisoned or dead.
What is obviously overlooked, however, in this whole controversy is the reality and the truth that our young men and women are being propagandized, lied to, manipulated, at a naive age, when they think of the military, any branch, as “fun”, “adventure”, “a chance to do travel”, “the only possible way to get an education”, and as a way to “grow up”, when the military is very serious business, and recruiters lie through their teeth to get vulnerable, insecure, naive, ill informed young kids to commit to something they often have no conception of the seriousness involved, often something their own parents wish they did not do, but have no control over what an 18-19 year old does.
We see how many soldiers are not only harmed physically by being in the military and in a war zone, but psychologically, as they have trouble coping with what they see, what they participate in, what they witness, which stuns their image of themselves and the world around them.
At a time when only one half of one percent of the American people have been in the military, since the draft ended in 1973, most Americans do not appreciate the sacrifices, the turmoil created, the difficult times these troops have, engaged in unending wars with no purpose, unlike the Second World War, which was something everyone could understand.
It is also ironic how many, who have never served in war, are so quick to judge and condemn those who have, with Dick Cheney, the former Vice President and a draft dodger to boot, in the lead, but with most members of Congress and their offspring not having served, but very willing to send “cannon fodder” to fight wars for the oil and weapons industries, and make obscene profits at the expense of our young men and women!
As someone who did not serve in the military, the author has full respect for the sacrifices of the military, but has never supported the lies and deceit used by recruiters to convince young people, who have no direction, to sign up for something they are not mature enough to understand the full implications of, when they sign on the dotted line!