War & Injustice

The recent prisoner swap involving Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl and members of the Taliban has unleashed a firestorm of criticism in the American media and among many members of our infallible Congress.  Though he has not yet returned to the U.S., this serviceman has already been tried and convicted of desertion and is blamed for the deaths of soldiers killed in the effort to find him.

President Obama and his Administration, trying to both end the conflict in Afghanistan and to close the prison at Guantanamo Bay, saw the opportunity to bring back a prisoner of war while exporting five Taliban members who have been detained for thirteen years and for whom there was no prospect of American justice.  Of course, the same politicians who stymied efforts to try and convict Guantanamo prisoners in Federal Court now object to their release, especially for a lowly sergeant who, they are convinced, willfully deserted his post.  Whether PTSD may have played a role in this story has not yet been clarified though media pundits have confidently declared that the sergeant is in good condition, based on a thirty second video.

Regardless of the injustice that some may find in this high profile prisoner swap, it pales in comparison to the injustices that have occurred throughout the Iran-Afghanistan conflict.  Thousands of innocent civilians have been killed by drone attacks, "shock and awe" bombs, wayward missiles, artillery shells, suicide bombers and IEDs.  War, however just in the minds of those who declare it, is never just for those caught in its theater of atrocity.