Krauthammer: Obama Didn't Have to Notify Congress of Bergdahl Swap
Republicans in Congress are calling for an investigation into the Bowe Bergdahl prisoner swap. According to the National Defense Authorization Act, the president must notify Congress at least 30 days prior to the release of detainees from Guantanamo Bay.
Over the weekend, Sgt. Bergdahl was released in exchange for five Taliban leaders freed from Gitmo. Democrat Dianne Feinstein (CA), chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee, criticized the Obama administration for not consulting with lawmakers.
Sen. Feinstein said, “It comes with some surprise and dismay that the transfers went ahead with no consultation, totally not following the law, and in an issue of this kind of concern to a committee that bears the oversight responsibility."
On Special Report, Charles Krauthammer defended President Obama’s power to release the detainees without telling Congress. He said the spirit of the law was to prevent the president from emptying Guantanamo.
Krauthammer said, “The one area where the president holds the upper hand in those disputes is in matters of war and peace, he’s commander in chief. And I think a prisoner exchange is in the province of the presidency.”
Tonight on The O’Reilly Factor (video below), Krauthammer said a country has two “iron clad” obligations.
The first is if there’s a soldier being held prisoner, you get him back. The second obligation he outlined is, “If you desert your unit, you are subject to military discipline. I would say you free him, and then you try him.”
Krauthammer said the mistake President Obama made was to celebrate the prisoner exchange. He told O’Reilly that the president’s press conference was part of his “arrogance” and “ignorance.”
In any hostage exchange, Krauthammer said the other side always gets the better deal.
“We put a premium on individual lives the way the other guys don't. That’s the difference between a civilized society and a barbarous society. And we pay a high price for being civilized,” he said.