Earlier this year, the Obama administration released five Taliban commanders to Qatar in exchange for Bowe Bergdahl, an alleged deserter who may have collaborated with the Taliban and who also could have the blood of American soldiers on his hands. While the same was obviously not done for beheaded journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff, the Obama administration took it a step further according to the families of both men.
As Shoebat.com reported via the Daily Beast, CIA Director John Brennan had allegedly been pushing hard for the release of those five Taliban commanders since at least 2011.
A major issue here is one of consistency. Another major issue is the degree to which the Bergdahl family is connected to Islam. Shoebat.com reported on Bergdahl’s father extensively. While both Foley and Sotloff appeared to be sympathetic to the Syrian rebels and in the case of Sotloff, to the Muslim Brotherhood in some ways, there are strong indications that the Bergdahls were more than just sympathetic to Islam.
On one hand, we have the release of five high level Taliban commanders to a nation state that already openly supports terrorism (Qatar) in exchange for one soldier who may have defected to the enemy. On the other hand, the same administration who made that deal forbade the families of two captive journalists to privately raise ransom money to have those journalists released.
Here is Michael Foley, the brother of James, telling Megyn Kelly of Fox News how his family was treated by the administration. Note that Kelly expresses her understanding of a U.S. policy not to pay ransom to terrorists but is clearly taken aback that it would prohibit private funds from being raised to do so:
James Foley’s mother expressed similar sentiment in a separate interview.
The parents of Sotloff are saying the same thing:
The parents of murdered journalist Steven Sotloff were told by a White House counterterrorism official at a meeting last May that they could face criminal prosecution if they paid ransom to try to free their son, a spokesman for the family told Yahoo News Friday night.
“The family felt completely and utterly helpless when they heard this,” said Barak Barfi, a friend of Sotloff who is serving as a spokesman for his family. “The Sotloffs felt there was nothing they could do to get Steve out.”
The journalist’s father, Art, was “shaking” after the meeting with the official, who works for the National Security Council, Barfi said. The families of three other hostages being held by the militant group Islamic State were also at the White House meeting, sources told Yahoo News.
In a show of blatant hypocrisy, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said the following in response to questions about the claims made by both families:
“We have found that terrorist organizations use hostage taking and ransoms as a critical source of financing for their organizations and that paying ransoms only puts other Americans in a position where they’re at even greater risk.”
Were not those five Taliban commanders ransom for Bergdahl?