Former Obama administration national security official Michael Leiter called the release of five top Taliban leaders from Gitmo a "big win" for the Taliban:
"I do think that these five, who were really far--on the far end of the spectrum of bad guys in Guantanamo--this is really problematic. For the long-term, this is going to strengthen the Taliban. Our hand is obviously weakening there. And I think them going back is--listen, it's not going to turn the tide in Afghanistan, I think the tide is probably already turned. But it is strengthening them, and it is a big win for them," Leiter said on MSNBC this morning.
Leiter also says he believes the Taliban 5 will be able to communicate with forces back in Afghanistan and Pakistan and that "they will be back working with the Taliban." He also said questions remain about the disappearance of Bowe Bergdahl, the man the U.S. traded for five Taliban leaders over the weekend..
Leiter was director of the National Counterterrorism Center for President Obama and, before him, President Bush.