Washington: Indian-American Governor of Louisiana Bobby Jindal has slammed US President Barack Obama on releasing five Taliban prisoners in lieu of an American soldier who was under Taliban captivity for nearly five years.
"The president may have swapped much more than meets the eye here. To gain the release of one soldier, he may have agreed to the release of five terrorists who will kill again. After all, that is why we were still holding these five men until Saturday," Jindal wrote in an op-ed to Fox news.
Jindal, who is eyeing the 2016 Republican presidential run, said refusing to negotiate with terrorists makes Americans safer.
"Terrorists all over the world need to know that our interaction with them will be limited solely to our effort to destroy them," he said.
"This entire episode flies directly in the face not only of long established American foreign policy, but it also directly contradicts what the New York Times and other publications note is the official foreign policy of the Obama administration `Don`t Do Stupid Stuff`. But of course, in keeping with the style of this White House, they used a less polite word than `stuff`," Jindal said.
The first ever Indian-American Governor and a Republican star, Jindal said he completely disagrees with the manner in which the Obama administration achieved Sgt Bowe Bergdahl`s freedom.
"This is a major departure from American policy, and one that could generate disastrous consequences for our soldiers, our diplomats, and any American who travels abroad," he said.
"When you look at the rap sheets of the five terrorists we released from detention at Guantanamo, it is ugly. When terrorists and criminals unequivocally know, as they did prior to this week, that the United States of America does not negotiate with them, they have far less incentive to abduct our citizens," he said.
"By its actions has the Obama administration inadvertently put a target on the backs of all Americans travelling abroad? Let`s hope not," Jindal said.
The White House, however, defended its decision.
"Prisoner exchanges in armed conflicts are hardly a new development, including in our history in the United States.? Whether it`s the Japanese or the North Koreans or others, we have engaged in prisoner exchanges in the past. The US does not leave our men and women in uniform behind," White House Press Secretary Jay Carney told reporters.
Arguing that prisoner exchanges are not uncommon in armed conflicts, Carney said the condition for release of five Taliban prisoners includes a travel ban and information- sharing on the detainees between the US and Qatar.