3:43 PM, Mar 25, 2015 • By MICHAEL WARREN
The United States Army has charged Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl with desertion and "misbehavior before the enemy." Bergdahl allegedly abandoned his post in Afghanistan and was held captive by Taliban-aligned forces for nearly five years before the Obama administration negotiated a deal with the Taliban forces. Bergdahl returned to the United States in 2014 in exchange for the release of five high-ranking and highly dangerous Taliban commanders. President Obama made the announcement in a highly dramatic fashion, with a speech in the Rose Garden flanked by Bergdahl's parents.
Plenty of Republicans criticized the trade, and even some Democrats raised questions about the nature of the exchange. But along with prominent members of the administration, several other Democrats were unequivocal in their praise for the exchange at the time and celebrated Bergdahl's service in the Army.
Hillary Clinton, Obama's former secretary of state, defended the deal in the days following. Clinton dismissed claims at the time that Bergdahl had deserted as "irrelevant." "We bring our people home," she said. Obama's national security adviser Susan Rice said Bergdahl had served with "honor and distinction."
Congressional leaders were effusive in their praise as well.
“Today is a joyful day for our nation," said House minority leader Nancy Pelosi in a May 31 statement. "As Sgt. Bergdahl returns home, we join in celebrating his safe return, and in expressing our gratitude for the relentless dedication of all the service members, intelligence officers, and diplomats who worked so hard to make this day a reality."
Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, then the majority leader, took to the Senate floor on June 4 to castigate Republicans criticizing the exchange. "As the president said, this is not a victory for him. It is a victory for the United States military and our country," said Reid.
Praise for the deal was not limited to members of Congress. New Hampshire's Democratic governor Maggie Hassan, who is likely to challenge Republican senator Kelly Ayotte in 2016, issued a statement to celebrate Bergdahl's return. “Sergeant Bergdahl’s release is incredibly heartening news, and I am sure his family and loved ones are overcome with joy that they will soon be reunited," said Hassan in a May 31 statement. "His dedication and resilience represent the very best of all our service members, and I join all Americans in thanking him for his service, bravery and sacrifice.”
5:12 PM, Mar 19, 2015 • By MICHAEL WARREN
The Obama administration appears to be moving toward a shift in its relations with a foreign ally, and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has nothing to say. White House officials have been suggesting the United States may not continue support Israel from charges and attacks by international bodies like the United Nations. Over the years, the U.S. frequently used its U.N. security-council veto to block resolutions that targeted the Jewish state.
The New Jersey Democrat is one of the top critics of Obama's Iran deal.2:21 PM, Mar 6, 2015 • By MICHAEL WARREN
The Justice Department will bring criminal charges to Democratic senator Bob Menendez of New Jersey.
10:49 AM, Feb 17, 2015 • By MICHAEL WARREN
A federal judge in Texas issued an injunction Monday to halt the implementation of a December executive order by President Barack Obama on immigration. The Associated Press reports:
U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen's decision late Monday puts on hold Obama's orders that could spare from deportation as many as five million people who are in the U.S. illegally.
Strategy is to "prevent violent extremism."9:30 AM, Feb 17, 2015 • By MICHAEL WARREN
The Obama adminstration begins its three-day summit on countering violent extremism with a "roundtable discussion" Tuesday afternoon led by Vice President Joe Biden and including "representatives from cities working to address the spread of violent extremism." President Barack Obama will join the summit twice this week, according to the Associated Press:
Dec 29, 2014, Vol. 20, No. 16 • By LEE SMITH
Last week’s announcement that the White House intends to restore normal diplomatic relations between the United States and Cuba is part of Barack Obama’s larger project to overturn what he perceives to be wrongheaded, or at least outdated, foreign policies. From Obama’s perspective, the Cold War ended nearly a quarter of a century ago, so let’s catch up to the new reality.
3:12 PM, Dec 4, 2014 • By MICHAEL WARREN
A senior White House official says the implementation of President Obama's executive order on immigration is "well underway" and that the administration would "proceed" regardless of congressional efforts to block the order.
On a Thursday afternoon conference call with reporters, the official, speaking on background, was asked about the implementation of the order. The officials referred specific questions to the Department of Homeland Security, but added: "Their plans are well underway."
Nov 10, 2014, Vol. 20, No. 09 • By LEE SMITH
Last week, the Obama White House finally clarified its Middle East policy. It’s détente with Iran and a cold war with Israel.
To the administration, Israel isn’t worth the trouble its prime minister causes. As one anonymous Obama official put it to journalist Jeffrey Goldberg, what good is Benjamin Netanyahu if he won’t make peace with the Palestinians? Bibi doesn’t have the nerve of Begin, Rabin, or Sharon, said the unnamed source. The current leader of this longstanding U.S. ally, he added, is “a chickens—t.”
11:32 AM, Oct 12, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
President Obama's former defense secretary, Leon Panetta, called for a White House shake-up this morning on CBS:
Hosted by Michael Graham.1:05 PM, Aug 22, 2014 • By TWS PODCAST
The WEEKLY STANDARD podcast with editor William Kristol on the supposed "good failure" the Obama administration is touting in their failed effort to save the late James Foley, who was brutally killed by ISIS.
10:24 AM, Aug 13, 2014 • By NOAH POLLAK
The new inquisitor has just been appointed by the UN Human Rights Council to “investigate” Israel’s conduct of Operation Protective Edge, following in the footsteps of Richard Goldstone, who famously, incompetently, and unjustly “investigated” Israel's 2009 Operation Cast Lead.
And why it mattersJul 21, 2014, Vol. 19, No. 42 • By DICK CHENEY and LIZ CHENEY
As the jihadists of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) capture territory and establish a caliphate stretching across the now-eradicated Syria-Iraq border, hard-won gains secured with American blood and treasure are being lost. We are watching the rise of potentially the gravest threat to our national security in a generation, one that surpasses even the threat we faced on 9/11.
But Hagel says Obama "made the ultimate decision."9:22 PM, Jun 9, 2014 • By MICHAEL WARREN
The last question asked at Monday night's closed-door briefing of members of the House of Representatives was a simple one: Who made the decision to transfer five top Taliban officials held at Guantanamo Bay to Qatar in exchange for the return of the Taliban's lone American POW, Army sergeant Bowe Bergdahl?
According to Buck McKeon, the chairman of the House Armed Services committee, the Obama administration's briefers told the gathered House members that the person responsible for the decision to make the deal was not President Obama but Chuck Hagel, the secretary of defense.