Author Topic: Newly freed soldier's Idaho hometown cancels rally amid backlash  (Read 335 times)

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Offline mystery-ak

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http://news.yahoo.com/idaho-hometown-newly-freed-soldier-cancels-planned-celebration-202815856.html;_ylt=AwrBEiKcg49T4QYAFcDQtDMD

Idaho hometown of newly freed soldier cancels planned celebration


Reuters
14 minutes ago

HAILEY Idaho (Reuters) - The hometown of U.S. Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl has canceled a rally planned for later this month celebrating his release from five years of Taliban captivity, a municipal official told Reuters on Wednesday, amid allegations that he was a deserter.

Heather Dawson, the city administrator of Hailey, Idaho, said town officials called off the June 28 event at the request of organizers because the town "will be unable to safely manage the number of people expected."

The decision came as the small mountain community was coming under mounting pressure to cancel the rally amid rising anger over claims by some of Bergdahl's former Army comrades that he had deliberately abandoned his post in Afghanistan.
« Last Edit: June 04, 2014, 04:45:09 PM by mystery-ak »

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Offline Bigun

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Re: FLASH: Bergdahl hometown cancels plans for celebration...
« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2014, 04:38:23 PM »
That's all that's on Drudge for now

Maybe they got the word that "Sargent" Bergdahl won't be going to Idaho anytime soon. May be headed to disciplinary barracks at Leavenworth first!

Probably just wishful thinking on my part.

« Last Edit: June 04, 2014, 04:39:07 PM by Bigun »
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Offline mystery-ak

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Re: FLASH: Bergdahl hometown cancels plans for celebration...
« Reply #2 on: June 04, 2014, 04:46:37 PM »
Quote
"will be unable to safely manage the number of people expected."

Trust me..those expected were not coming to celebrate and welcome this traitor home...

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Offline Chieftain

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Re: FLASH: Bergdahl hometown cancels plans for celebration...
« Reply #3 on: June 04, 2014, 05:26:12 PM »
See?  I told you....

 :beer:

Online EC

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Re: FLASH: Bergdahl hometown cancels plans for celebration...
« Reply #4 on: June 04, 2014, 05:29:26 PM »
Rolling Thunder threaten to visit?

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Offline rangerrebew

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Newly freed soldier's Idaho hometown cancels rally amid backlash
« Reply #5 on: June 04, 2014, 08:58:03 PM »
Newly freed soldier's Idaho hometown cancels rally amid backlash


Reuters
By By Laura Zuckerman
1 hour ago




HAILEY Idaho (Reuters) - U.S. Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl's hometown, feeling a backlash over allegations that he was a deserter, has canceled a rally planned for later this month celebrating his release from five years of Taliban captivity, city officials said on Wednesday.

In calling off the June 28 event, the officials cited concerns that they lacked the resources to safely manage the thousands of supporters and protesters who were expected to converge on the small mountain community of 8,000 residents.

The decision came as pressure mounted to cancel the rally in the face of rising hostility, expressed in a torrent of emails and phone calls directed at city officials and businesses, over claims by Bergdahl's onetime Army comrades that he deliberately abandoned his post in Afghanistan.

Some have asserted that the search for Bergdahl after he went missing under murky circumstances on June 30, 2009, may have cost the lives of up to six fellow soldiers.

Days ago, the central Idaho town near the upscale ski resort of Sun Valley erupted in elation over news that the 28-year-old Army sergeant had been freed in a prisoner exchange with the Taliban.

But the festive mood prevailing on Saturday after Bergdahl's release was soon tempered by criticism from some former members of his combat unit that he was unfairly being hailed as a hero.

Hailey Police Chief Jeff Gunter said he received a phone call from a fellow police chief in Tennessee asking him, "'What's wrong with you people?'" Asked what he meant, Gunter recounted that the caller angrily replied: "'What the hell's your problem for supporting this deserter?'"

A rally organizer, Stefanie O'Neill, said as late as Tuesday it would go ahead as planned. But as recriminations grew, O'Neill and her mother, Debbie, a co-organizer, paid a visit to the sergeant's parents, Bob and Jani Bergdahl, to ask whether they wanted the celebration to proceed.

The city later said the rally, originally planned while Bergdahl was still a captive as a show of solidarity around the anniversary of his disappearance, was canceled.

"National media attention on Hailey and this event has led many across the nation to believe that the event is intended to be a military parade," a town statement said, citing public safety concerns as a reason for the cancellation.

Idaho National Guard Colonel Tim Marsano, who has acted as a family spokesman, said the Bergdahls had no statement about the decision.

PUBLIC SAFETY

Questions raised about Bergdahl's capture have stoked a related controversy over the Obama administration's decision to turn over five Taliban prisoners held at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba to the custody of Qatar in exchange for Bergdahl's return. (Full Story)

Some conservative commentators have also questioned the motives of Bergdahl's father, who immersed himself in books about Afghanistan after his son became a captive.

Bergdahl was flown over the weekend to a military hospital in Germany for physical and mental evaluation, and it was not clear whether he would return to Idaho by the end of the month.

For all the outpouring of hometown joy and national media attention on Bergdahl after his release, supporters in Hailey insisted they never regarded him as a hero.

"People in Hailey have been aware for some time that there were questions about how Bowe came to be captured, and that there was a chance that Bowe could be in trouble when he came home," Stefanie O'Neill said. "Our purpose was to bring Bowe back and to celebrate his return."

But she and others said they were surprised by the intensity of the backlash stirred by allegations of desertion. They said the young soldier, remembered in town as a somewhat bookish but athletic loner, should be given the benefit of the doubt until he has a chance to speak for himself.

"Bowe has been lynched without a trial," said Lee Ann Goddard Ferris, a neighbor of the soldier's family who has known Bergdahl's father, Bob, for 35 years and describes herself as a conservative Republican. "These are good people. These are good and loyal Americans."

Signs of celebration remained very much in evidence in downtown Hailey, a left-leaning pocket in an otherwise conservative state where yellow ribbons were still tied to lamp posts and trees, and banners in shop windows bear Bergdahl's image and the slogan "Bowe is free at last."

At Zaney's River Street Coffee House, a gathering point for Bergdahl's supporters where he worked as a barista before enlisting, owner Sue Martin suggested a welcome rally may have been premature.

"The family needs time to heal," she said. "I'm not unhappy it's been canceled."

(Reporting by Laura Zuckerman; Additional reporting by Daniel Wallis in Denver; Writing by Steve Gorman; Editing by Sandra Maler and Will Dunham)

http://news.yahoo.com/idaho-hometown-newly-freed-soldier-cancels-planned-celebration-202815856.html;_ylt=AwrBEiKcg49T4QYAFcDQtDMD
« Last Edit: June 04, 2014, 08:58:54 PM by rangerrebew »
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Re: Newly freed soldier's Idaho hometown cancels rally amid backlash
« Reply #6 on: June 04, 2014, 09:18:00 PM »
Smart Thing. Why rally behind a traitor. Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl's has joined Benedict Arnold, Julian and Ethel Rosenberg and other people as notorious traitors to this country.
« Last Edit: June 04, 2014, 09:22:41 PM by Trigger »

Offline mountaineer

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Re: Newly freed soldier's Idaho hometown cancels rally amid backlash
« Reply #7 on: June 04, 2014, 09:24:47 PM »
Quote
They said the young soldier, remembered in town as a somewhat bookish but athletic loner, should be given the benefit of the doubt until he has a chance to speak for himself.
I'm pretty sure he's spoken for himself, like when he said he was ashamed to be an American.
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Offline 240B

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Re: Newly freed soldier's Idaho hometown cancels rally amid backlash
« Reply #8 on: June 04, 2014, 09:26:12 PM »
There would have been as many or more protesters than welcomers.
The town finally figured that out.
You cannot "COEXIST" with people who want to kill you.

Offline Chieftain

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Grammy winner Carole King was scheduled to perform at a public party for the returned POW

Mayor Fritz Haemmerle canceled the celebration citing fears for the public safety

But some members of the community were outraged that the town would pay homage to a soldier who many believe is a deserter - or worse

By Ryan Parry In Hailey, Idaho

Published: 16:41 EST, 4 June 2014

A public welcome home celebration featuring Grammy-winning singer Carole King in honor of freed POW Bowe Bergdahl in the tiny town of Hailey, Idaho was abruptly cancelled today.

The official reason given was a concern for public safety, but MailOnline has learned that it was not the only reason the party was scrubbed.

Today's decision follows a row that erupted in Hailey between Mayor Fritz Haemmerle and US Army Platoon Commander Jonathan Kennedy, who lives in Hailey.

And Kennedy wasn't the only towns person who voiced disapproval of a celebration for the soldier under fire.

Mayor Haemmerle wanted to throw a welcome home party for Bergdahl, who has been released after five years as a Taliban hostage.

But since claims of Bergdahl’s alleged desertion in Afghanistan and the political fallout surrounding his return, the mayor’s office has been inundated with calls and emails in opposition to the plans.

The Army tank platoon commander weighed in and said a public ceremony to celebrate Bergdahl’s return would be a ‘monstrous profanity’.

In an email to Mayor Haemmerle - seen by MailOnline - former US Army platoon leader Jonathan Kennedy said: ‘If Individual members of the community wish to hold sedate, private celebrations to commemorate Bowe Bergdahl's homecoming, they are of course free and welcome to do so.

It would be, however, a monstrous profanity if a public ceremony, financed by public money, were to be held.

‘It would be more monstrous still if this ceremony were to, in any way, heap undeserved adulation on Bergdahl, or to adopt the sickly hue of ostentatious jingoism that all too often colors such occasions.’

Kennedy, 30, said the fact that Bergdahl has been repatriated ‘is an unambiguously positive development’, adding that he shares the community’s ‘relief’ that Bergdahl will be reunited with his family.

But he said: ‘I do, however, think it is incumbent upon members of this community to come to terms with the fact that, while one town will soon be reunited with a native son, there are six other towns scattered across this country that never will be.’

Kennedy is referring to the six soldiers later killed in Paktika province, Afghanistan believed to be in connection with attempts to rescue Bergdahl.

He added: ‘Until he is cleared of the charges against him, this man deserves no applause. For now, the only appropriate response is silence.’

Mr Kennedy served in the US Army as a platoon commander from 2009-2013, during which he was posted to South Korea.

He is now an executive at a recruiting firm in New York.

In response to Kennedy’s email Mayor Haemmerle replied: ‘Past celebrations have focused on bringing this soldier home.  Regardless of the character of the men and women who choose to serve, we do not leave our soldiers behind. 

‘You have to remember that Bowe Bergdahl's family also are a part of our community.  I have known Bob for thirty years. 

‘From my standpoint, our celebration will focus on Bowe Bergdahl's release and the relief of his family and those who live here. 

‘Again, from my standpoint, any celebration exists separate and apart from any objective inquiry on how Bergdahl was captured.’

Kennedy feared that an annual event called 'Bring Bowe Back' that was scheduled for June 28 would now be the venue for the welcome celebration.

The event was quickly renamed by locals as 'Bowe is Back'.

'It is going to be Bowe's official welcome-home party even if he's not quite home yet," organizer Stefanie O'Neill said on the weekend before it was canceled.

Grammy Award Winner Carole King was on tap to sing and Bergdahl’s parents Bob and Jani were due to talk at the event at Hop Potter Park in Hailey.

The event, which normally attracts 10-15,000 people, was include a motorcycle ride from Twin Falls, to Hailey Idaho and a
5K Walk.

Bergdahl, 28, had been held prisoner by the Taliban since June 30, 2009.

He was handed over to U.S. special forces by the Taliban in exchange for the release of five Afghan detainees held by the United States.

In Hailey, a town of 7,000 people, residents have hung yellow ribbons along Main Street.

Signs have been taped up in windows saying, 'Bowe is free at last!'

At Zaney's River Street Cafe, where Bergdahl used to work as a barista, a sign that hung in the window for years read 'Get Bowe Back'.

Now, it is accompanied with two more signs that read, 'Welcome home, Bowe!' and 'Our prayers have been answered!'

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2648874/Mayor-cancels-plan-welcome-home-celebration-Hailey-Idaho-honor-freed-POW-Bowe-Bergdahl-local-Army-commander-calls-monstrous-profanity.html#ixzz33j9ScoBZ
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook





Offline Chieftain

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My God!!  They cancelled Carole King??!!..............

 :smokin:

Offline rangerrebew

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My God!!  They cancelled Carole King??!!..............

 :smokin:

Did she call the town and ask them to "call out my name, wherever I am and I'll be there?" :whistle:
« Last Edit: June 05, 2014, 04:18:37 PM by rangerrebew »
America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves. Abraham Lincoln

Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power. Abraham Lincoln

Be sure you put your feet in the right place, then stand firm. Abraham Lincoln


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