The five Guantanamo Bay terrorists that Barack Obama released in exchange for a U.S. Army deserter have joined the Taliban’s “political” office in Qatar. According to the Spanish international news agency, the move reinforces the terrorist group’s operations.
The Taliban Five were long-term Afghan detainees at the U.S. military prison in southeast Cuba and formerly high-ranking members of the Taliban government of Afghanistan, including Chief of Staff of the Taliban Army and the Taliban Deputy Minister of Intelligence. They had been described as “the hardest of the hard-core” by John McCain, and one U.S. Senator referred to the freed jihadists as the “Taliban Dream Team.”
All five are deemed “high” risk to the United States and were recommended for “continued detention.”
That did not stop Obama from swapping them for disgraced Army solider, Bowe Bergdahl, who deserted his post and was captured by the Taliban in Afghanistan.
Judicial Watch reports:
The secret exchange violated the law and written White House rules. The nonpartisan investigative arm of Congress, the Government Accountability Office (GAO), determined that the president broke a “clear and unambiguous” law when he traded the high-level terrorists for Bergdahl, who went AWOL in Afghanistan in 2009.
According to rules issued by the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) the violation is serious and can carry severe consequences. They include fines, imprisonment, administrative discipline, suspension from duty without pay or removal from office, the rules specifically state.
Bergdahl left his post and was held captive by the Taliban-aligned Haqqani network in Afghanistan from June 2009 until May 2014. The circumstances surrounding Bergdahl’s disappearance and subsequent capture have become the subject intense controversy. He was released on May 31, 2014 in exchange for the five terrorists, Mullah Muhammad Fazel Mazlum, Mullah Noorullah Noori, Mullah Abdul Haq Wasiq, Mullah Khairullah Khairkhwa and Maulavi Muhammad Nabi Omari.
All of them held high-ranking positions with the Taliban before going to Gitmo. Fazel Mazlum was the deputy defense minister from 1996 to 2001. Noorullah Noori was governor of the Balkh province, Abdul Haq Wasiq was deputy intelligence chief, Khairullah Khairkhwa was interior minister and Nabi Omari worked in the military in late 1990s.
“The five terrorists released were the hardest of the hard-core,” a veteran U.S. Senator wrote in a letter to the chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee after Obama freed them. “They held positions of great importance within the hard-core anti-American Taliban, including the Chief of Staff of the Taliban Army and the Taliban Deputy Minister of Intelligence. They have American blood on their hands and surely as night follows day they will return to the fight. In effect, we released the “Taliban Dream Team.”
The United States is less safe because of these actions.” Judicial Watch investigated the controversial Bergdahl trade and sued the Department of Defense (DOD) for records involving then Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel’s determination that the terrorists were “no longer a threat to U.S. national security.” Judicial Watch also litigated to obtain the bilateral Memorandum of Understanding between the U.S. and Qatar relating to the terrorist release.