Monday, June 9, 2014

Fred Reed Gets It

Mostly.

The Bergdahl Thing

Over on Ex-Army, Rex May (AKA Baloo) asks:

Has Fred Gone Too Far? — You Be The Judge

The only honest answer to that is: Yes, and no.

One big problem I see in the Bergdahl matter is that people are reaching conclusions with a minimum of information. The reality is that we know very little and there is a lot we don't know. Innuendo, speculation and rumor are just not good criteria for reaching a rational and just conclusion. Emotions are a useful guide but facts are what matter and there are precious few facts available right now.

So, by accepting the narrative that Bergdahl was a "deserter" who left because he was disillusioned by the war, Fred does go too far. The truth is that we just don't know what happened nor why Bergdahl did whatever he did.

Nevertheless, if it is true that Bergdahl left his post because he doubted the justness of the war and began to see himself as no better than a hired killer, then I have to agree with Fred's conclusions.

God forbid that soldiers begin to think. Independence of mind is dangerous to militaries. Training is chiefly a means of preventing it. Infrequently a soldier has the courage to see that what he is doing is both stupid and immoral, and walk away from it. Bowe Bergdahl did. I say, speaking as a former Marine in Viet Nam, and as a life member of both the Veterans of Foreign Wars and the Disabled Veterans of America: You have my admiration, Sergeant Bergdahl.

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