White House aides who have said Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl's fellow soldiers are using "Swift Boat" tactics against him are "pathetic," says Rep. Duncan Hunter.
"These are pathetic allegations put out there to hide a totally botched foreign-policy move," Hunter, a California Republican and Marine combat veteran, said Wednesday on Fox News Channel's "The Kelly File."
"This is juvenile foreign policy, and they are taking it out on the people they should be respecting the most."
Former members of the military have been speaking out to the media in recent days after the White House negotiated a prisoner swap between Bergdahl and five top Taliban leaders held at Guantanamo Bay.
They say they object to seeing Bergdahl spoken of by the White House as a hero when he actually was captured by the Taliban only after willingly walking away from his base in Afghanistan. In some of his writings he said he was disillusioned with the war and was ashamed to be an American.
Most of the former soldiers have said they have no interest in the political battles between Congress and President Barack Obama over whether the trade should have been made or whether Obama broke the law by not giving Congress proper notice.
Hunter told Fox News the deal happened only because the White House cut the Defense Department out of the deal, instead relying on the State Department.
"They don't have any respect for the military," he said.
Bergdahl is likely to face a military investigation over his actions that are thought to have led to the deaths of six fellow servicemen who were involved in the initial hunt for him.
Hunter compared Bergdahl to Secretary of State John Kerry, who threw his combat medals over the White House fence in 1971 in protest of U.S. actions in Vietnam. Like Kerry, Hunter said, Bergdahl walked away from his comrades.
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