Congressman Randy Forbes sent out an email which contained this blatant lie:
The Administration’s action violates a long-held principle that our government will not enter into negotiations with a terrorist organization.
I was a little disappointed. Forbes’s dishonesty is usually a bit more nuanced. He’ll often hide misleading innuendo in half-truths or push polls. He could have just said, “We don’t negotiate with terrorists” and let it be understood that he’s accusing Obama of doing so.
But perhaps after reading the comments on his blog post about the swap, he realized that most of his supporters are so ill informed, so hateful, and so ready to soak up any nonsense that justifies their world view and their hatred of Obama, that Mr. Forbes felt it would be a waste of time to craft a technically true statement or to disguise his innuendo in the form of a question. He can just lie.
It’s a lie because the Taliban, despite being a hateful enemy, is not a terrorist organization. Not everyone we hate is a terrorist, although the right wing has been confused about that for over a decade. The difference is significant. The Taliban did not storm a non-combat zone and carry people away at gunpoint. They caught an American soldier, and instead of shooting him they held him as a prisoner. If we’re going to encourage that kind of behavior, then good, because the alternative is murder.
I am not discounting the heinous crimes against humanity committed by the Taliban, and I’m not discounting the Taliban’s treatment of Bergdahl while he was in captivity. The Taliban are disgusting, murderous bigots. I am only stating that Bergdahl’s capture was an act of war, not an act of terror. And that fact makes a lie out of all the talk about how this prisoner exchange will set any kind of dangerous precedent.
It’s a dangerous lie that Republicans are telling now. And Randy Forbes, as usual but without his usual craftiness, is helping to perpetuate it. It’s way past time for a change in Virginia’s 4th District.