Obama had Alternatives to the ‘Taliban Five’ Exchange for Bowe Bergdahl
The Obama administration has argued that exchanging five high-risk Taliban commanders imprisoned at the U.S. Naval Station in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, (GTMO) was the only contemplated option to repatriate accused deserter Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl.
However, a recently released report by the House Armed Services Committee and congressional testimony by a U.S. Army lieutenant colonel revealed that multiple alternatives were on the table, including options that apparently did not involve prisoner swaps.
Each one of the detainees were deemed “high” risk to the United States and its allies by the Joint Task Force Guantanamo (JTF-GTMO) review board convened on the orders of President Obama to evaluate the detainees held at the detention center to recommend how they should be disbursed.
Moreover, senior intelligence officials told lawmakers that the top five Taliban commanders—Mohammad Fazl, Mohammed Nabi, Abdul Haq Wasiq, Mullah Norullah Nori, and Khairullah Khairkhwa—were likely to return to terrorist activities against the U.S. if they were liberated.