The thuggish behavior on the right toward Bowe Berdgahl, his family, and his community has been nothing short of disgusting. In the past week, his parents have received multiple death threats. Officials in his hometown of Hailey, Idaho are being harassed with profane and sometimes intimidating phone calls, such as one promising “consequences” if the town held a welcome home party.
We don’t know all the details yet of what Bowe was thinking when he wandered off his base – or the state of his mental health. But he paid a price for that mistake: five years of hell. Republicans and their media stooges have been trying to gin up controversy about soldiers killed searching for Bowe, but as the NY Times reported by doing actual journalism, the reality was far more complicated. It is reprehensible that CNN has been presenting as fact highly charged claims that this article shows to be very dubious.
I’ve been to Hailey, and saw the weather-worn yellow ribbons flying for Bowe long after the country had moved on from that news story – and from Afghanistan altogether. If Bowe wandered off, so did the rest of America.
Special thanks to Markos Moulitsas, author of American Taliban.