An anonymous source within the Pentagon said that President Obama had turned down several proposals for rescue missions to retrieve Sgt. Bergdahl from the Taliban because he’s instead focused on closing down Guantanamo Bay.
“JSOC [Joint Special Operations Command] went to the White House with several specific rescue-op scenarios,” the official said. They also claim to have deep knowledge of the interagency negotiations that have been underway since November of 2013, “But none ever got traction.”
According to the source, the President’s refusal to rescue Bergdahl was part of a larger plan to drain the infamous detention center.
“What we learned along the way was that the president wanted a diplomatic scenario that would establish a precedent for repatriating detainees from Gitmo,” he said.
He also said that a liaison with the State Department described to him what to expect after the government had received a video from the Taliban showing Bergdahl in poor health in an effort to speed up negotiations for a prisoner swap.
“He basically told me that no matter what JSOC put on the table, it was never going to fly because the president isn’t going to leave office with Gitmo intact, and this was the best opportunity to see that through.”
In addition to these revelations, a second source from the Pentagon said that even though the intelligence community was strongly against a prisoner exchange Obama had been pushing hard for one. At least two intelligence agencies warned the administration against buying too far into the video that was sent.