I would not have agreed to the prisoner swap as it was executed, said that Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl acted with honor and distinction, or failed to brief Congress. However, let's give military justice a chance to work, without the overheated partisanship that engulfs Republicans or the endless spin coming from the administration. How about we have the trial before we schedule the hanging?


For now there is one simple point that the media have not focused on sufficiently, and politicians have not addressed in depth, and it is this:

Bergdahl was a prisoner for a long time facing aggressive interrogation, harsh treatment, psychological warfare and probably torture from the Taliban. The Taliban no doubt tried every weapon to break Bergdahl, and to apply physical and psychological pressure for Bergdahl to tape a video denouncing our country during his captivity, which the Taliban would have used for propaganda against America. Apparently, Bergdahl did not break and refused to tape a video which even the noblest POWs often do. If this turns out to be true, whatever his other sins — which should be honorably investigated and, if necessary, punished under our code of military justice — Bergdahl deserves some credit for this.

On the broader case, I will leave it to others with a microphone or a keyboard to engage in overheated rhetoric about the case without knowing the facts, and let our excellent system of military justice find the facts before we make our judgements.

Budowsky was an aide to former Sen. Lloyd Bentsen (D-Texas) and former Rep. Bill Alexander (D-Ark.), who was then chief deputy majority whip of the House. He holds an LL.M. degree in international financial law from the London School of Economics. Contact him at brentbbi@webtv.net.