Did the U.S. pay a terrorist group ransom to secure Bergdahl’s release?

On Thursday, Congressman Steve Stockman (R-TX) sent a letter to the White House asking if the Obama Administration authorized any payment to the Haqqani terrorist network in exchange for Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl. The question is actually a fair one given Haqqani’s history of demanding ransom for prisoners.

According to a press release from Stockman’s office, the Haqqani Network has demanded ransom for high-profile captives in the past, including $5 million for Afghan diplomat Haji Khaliq Farahi and $15 million for New York Times journalist David Rohde. Rohde ultimately escaped before his ransom was collected.


The White House has not explicitly responded to Stockman’s letter. When Townhall columnist Guy Benson reached out on Twitter, a White House official directed him to a blog post that quotes national security staff spokeswomen Caitlin Hayden, who had apparently commented on the ransom claims previously.

“The United States did not provide money in return for Sgt. Bergdahl,” Hayden said.

On radio this morning, Glenn touched on several reports about Bergdahl’s release and the Obama Administration’s actions. While the validity of these reports varies, Glenn, Pat, and Stu couldn’t help but consider the sympathy President Obama feels for Bergdahl on an ideological level.

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“This is interesting… It seems like Obama… has liked this story and probably does feel something special for this soldier because he’s more aligned with how Obama would be as a soldier,” Stu said. “You know, a guy very conflicted by what he’s doing. He doesn’t actually believe in a lot of the stuff that they’re doing.”

Through published emails exchanges with his parents, Bergdahl expressed his frustration with the U.S. military and the U.S. mission in Afghanistan. Glenn believes President Obama could identify with that mindset.

“I think this is a guy that the president absolutely identifies with… He’s wearing the uniform of the president of United States, the flag lapel pin and everything else… He doesn’t agree with it. His wife hates the White House. They live there because that’s where the president is supposed to live,” Glenn concluded. [But] there are certain things that he takes direct interest in. And I’ll bet you, Stu, you’re right, that he does see this guy and recognize his plight. He’s a guy who went over there, was just trying to help the Afghani people and he is more sympathetic to the Muslim cause.”

  • Anonymous

    Why, that would be money laundering, considering that the negotiations were carried out with Qatar as the go-between. That’s illegal. Oh, waiter! Check please!

  • jyrine

    Early reports from WND indicated millions of dollars were paid along with the 5 terrorists.

  • Anonymous

    “The United States did not provide money in return for Sgt. Bergdahl,” Hayden said.

    But they could have provided money for some other reason (that is still essentially for the return Sgt. Bergdahl!).

  • http://truthofg.blogspot.com/ Connor Kenway

    You mean this white house is still funding terrorist. Oh please Glenn we already knew that.

  • Anonymous

    Question is Bergdahl’s receiving false talking points from this administation and his lawyer to cover obama for his trade that help our enemies while they still in declare war against United States, U.S soldiers, U.S citizens in U.S and anywhere in the world !!!!!! Just as U.S citizens got false talking points on Benghazi !!!!!!!!!!! ?????? Oh ya maybe some more false talking points by Susan Rice to U.S citizens on this so call honorable soldier trade that aid and abet our enemies to give cover to obama !!!! ????

  • Anonymous

    Ah, the US didn’t pay any MONEY, but what’s to say that some arms went through Qatar worth a few million bucks? I’m sure the Haqqanis would gladly take that exchange too.

  • ThorsteinVeblen2012

    Seems spitting on returning prisoners of war has become fashionable.

    22 vets a day are committing suicide. Will you spit on them too?

  • shashiznick

    I hope all of my fellow Americans are as disgusted with this poor excuse for a man that we have for president. He is filthy maggot. He hates Americans it is obvious. It is not even a surprise that they would give the Taliban money. Obama is allies with the Taliban and we are his enemies.

  • Crassus

    What are you complaining about, lugnut? Didn’t you do the same thing when the Vietnam POWs returned? Admit it, you did.

  • Anonymous

    Ya maybe a secret arm’s shipments
    like in Syria,Libya to fractions who declare war on U.S,Christians,Israel,the free western world ????

  • asas

    would not surprise me, this country disgusted me, the only prideful thing about us is our military.

  • Guest
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  • Anonymous

    Is it the key word phrase — “Did not provide MONEY”

  • bumpkin

    I called the Senate’s Sergeant At Arms today- The man who answered the phone said “Sergeant at Arms…” I identified myself, then asked him if it is true that he is the ONLY person in the United States that can arrest Barack Obama. He said he is.Then he took a breath, paused and said, But if that is why you are calling, you should direct your call to your Senator.” He then asked me if he could transfer me. I told him no thanks, they are Democrats, and that every time I call my Senators, I never get to speak to them, and I dont ever hear back from them. Its pointless. —But, I AM going to call them. Called them last week. We are going to become so close that they will know me when they answer the phone. They are going to hear from me so often that they will aks how my grandkids are. Why? Because the Squeaky Wheel Gets The Grease! Call your Senators. Remind then that Obama is making the Congress pointless, and they will be out of a job when he gets a few more “around-them’s” rolled out, because he will have then set a legal precedent, and that will uphold his ‘Congress is inconsequential’ in a court of law. “Senator Burger-Flipper, how are you today?”

  • babsan

    Obama supports terrorists all the time,look who is in WH.

  • Anonymous

    While I feel your frustration and agree with your sentiments, I think we need a more sophisticated strategy than just repeatedly calling Congress. First of all, the staff member that will answer your phone calls (unless you get a machine) will roll his eyes and forget about you within 5 minutes. Second, if you really start to bug them, you’ll either be viciously audited by the IRS (a favorite weapon of politicians to keep the masses in fear and obedience), stalked by the NSA or you may simply disappear in an act of rendition. You are not going up against people who play fairly.

    Also, although, we’d all like to think politicians worry about their job security, they don’t. Most of them have completely lost any ability to reason like the rest of us. They see themselves as above the Constitution (the Law of the Land) and they certainly do not fear “the people”…as evidenced by the passing of Obamacare despite many, many anger-filled town hall meetings. We really can’t blame them, though, when the executive office blatantly ignores Congressional oversight and Congress ignores its duty to impose a system of checks and balances on the judicial and executive branches.

  • Anonymous

    I doubt most Americans wish to “spit on returning prisoners of war”, but I think most Americans (excluding progressives, the President and Congress) are upset that we would violate our long-held tradition of not negotiating with terrorists for the release of our traitors. Just doesn’t sit well, you know.

  • Samuel Fernandez

    If BO provided money either directly or indirectly then BO would be guilty of funding a terrorist organization and that reason for criminal charges. Also, I want to know the cost in American Soldiers lives to capture these five terrorist,,,,,,no one as given an estimate

  • John Scott

    Its what we call dirty negotiation. To skirt over proper channels because the exchange was soundly rejected by sane leaders in Congress and in the military. In some Countries the military would removed such a leader from power. Obama purely did this for political reasons to deflect the VA scandal. This is what Obama does.

  • John Scott

    Did not have to be money. Maybe a agreement of drone engagement? Or a future release of Gitmo prisoners ? With everything these people say. Its what they carefully don’t say that’s is at issue. Susan Rice is a puppet and disgraceful American. To lie repeatedly just to save face of a ideology that is broken. From a President who is destroying America. Shame on all the Presidents puppets.

  • Jon Galt

    Sadly, the ignorant and apathetic masses meander on like sheep heading to the slaughter house.

    This is looking more and more like Mao’s China or Stalin’s Soviet Union, and just like the people there, 80% don’t (or won’t) see it coming.

    The ONLY difference – they will not get our (my) guns without a fight… MOLAN LABE!

  • Anonymous

    Glenn I think today you hit on the new game plan for obama administration for cover !! Our President knows that and press conference will be double check for false talking points ,and want to avoid a another negative spotlight of trail for this soldier who might found guilty of desertion and as a traitor that might reveal what obama really doing and have to own up to it in public. So this administration and this soldiers lawyer have this soldier play up the act that he is mentally unstable , won’t have a trail,no punishment, reason to be silent no press conference of him speaking out that will be negative for him & obama and give obama cover for his wrong doings and for obama to avoid another negative spotlight of a trail !!!!!!!!!!

  • Anonymous

    The obvious reason for this trade is to get the spotlight off the VA scandal under obama watch, also as ruse cover of obama to aid and abet our enemies military in returning their most effective military leaders !! But there is another reason to get obama off the hot seat , the need for him to label and admit that radical Muslims is our enemies ,and of free world ,and freedom of people in the world and to address the problem and wake up our citizens to this threat !! The trade also to get the spotlight off obama for not doing anything when 300 school girls were kidnapped to be sex slave by radical Muslims and obama didn’t say boo and the trade to get the spotlight off radical Muslims as pure evil in our world and a threat to western free world !! Your heart obama is still with the radicals Muslims you won’t lift your little finger against them,just BS saying your doing something, or a ruse half try that won’t do anything to stop their evil agenda !!! To me obama your in the corner of the radicals Muslims our enemies and your not in the corner of our country or of our citizens or the free western world !!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Michelle27

    “‘The United States did not provide money in return for Sgt. Bergdahl,’ Hayden said.” So they didn’t provide “money”? Maybe we gave land away? Has anyone noticed if Hawaii still belongs to us?

  • Anonymous

    Ya that may be in works of Hawaii with obama , anything can goes with obama he above the law he the phony savior !!! I ,wouldn’t put anything pass obama in acheiving his agenda he will stoop to any level against our nation and our citizens!!!!!!!!!! Then use false talking points or lies for his cover what he really doing like IRS,Benghazi,obama care ,and this trade of 5 terrorists commanders leaders !!!

  • shashiznick

    And now the “great leader” is testing the waters to see if gun grabbing is in the near future. God bless Eugene Stoner for his contribution to freedom and the republic.

  • IT 2 IT

    MICHAEL HASTINGS murder UPSTAGING —–’SNOWED IN’

    ‘VETS are AL QAIDA” narrative nudging —–’BORG – - -DOLL’.

  • Organix

    Adam Smith first realized that we had stumbled upon ways to cooperate which enabled us to overcome the limits of our own personal knowledge.