The current debate over whether Pvt. Bowe Bergdahl, recently swapped for five Guantanamo detainees, was a traitor or hero obscured what should be the real debate of our foreign policy, Ron Paul told Charles Goyette in his weekly podcast today. Many on the pro-war side wanted at first to make him out to be a hero because he was a veteran, and to deny that the veterans who fought in Afghanistan were all heroes might be to suggest that all the war dead died in vain.
But then it got rather complicated when it was discovered that Bergdahl developed second thoughts about the war in Afghanistan and may have even deserted his unit. Then the neocons began screaming for his blood — and for Obama’s impeachment for trading him for the imprisoned Taliban members.
Ron Paul sees a bit differently. “I see [Bergdahl] as more of a victim,” he said. “But all of the military are victims to a degree.” Some will argue that they were 18 when they joined and knew what they were getting into, said Paul, “but the propaganda is so strong and we are all conditioned to go along with it.” The young people had been conditioned that they had to join up and go kiill the Hitler of the day, he added.
“Just think what life would have been like if we had followed a non-interventionist foreign policy after 1945,” Dr. Paul told Goyette. There would have been no VA scandal because the hospitals would not be so overly full of those who have been injured in senseless wars and interventions overseas.
Listen to the whole podcast here.