Not so much “released,” as “exchanged.” For five stellar individuals that had been held in Guantanamo: Mohammad Fazl, Mullah Norullah Noori, Mohammed Nabi, Khairullah Khairkhwa, and Abdul Haq Wasiq.
There is an interesting statement in the article:
Hagel said security measures are in place to ensure the national security of the United States would not be compromised by the prisoners’ release.
Now, if this was a better world, we could assure that these guys would present no threat to the security of the US because we secretly replaced their Folgers Crystals with polonium 210 on the flight to Qatar, or they swallowed capsules containing small explosive devices, or we’ve Manchurian Candidate reprogrammed them, or we showed them secret footage of disguised Navy SEALS driving nuclear weapons around Certain Holy Cities. But I suspect, given the current feckless administration, that we just asked them really nicely to promise to not do anything naughty in the future.
And then there’s THIS WRINKLE in the story:
Rep. Buck McKeon, the chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, and Sen. Jim Inhofe, the ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee…
“In executing this transfer, the president also clearly violated laws which require him to notify Congress 30 days before any transfer of terrorists from Guantanamo Bay and to explain how the threat posed by such terrorists has been substantially mitigated,” they continued. “Our joy at Sergeant Berghdal’s release is tempered by the fact that President Obama chose to ignore the law, not to mention sound policy, to achieve it.”