Sunday, May 28, 2006
John Kerry--Nimble, Swift, Effective
Mr. President, I remember Christmas of 1968 sitting on a gunboat in Cambodia. I remember what it was like to be shot at by Vietnamese and Khmer Rouge and Cambodians, and have the President of the United States telling the American people that I was not there; the troops were not in Cambodia.
I have that memory which is seared-seared-in me, that says to me, before we send another generation into harm's way we have a responsibility in the U.S. Senate to go the last step, to make the best effort possible in order to avoid that kind of conflict.
That was from the Senate Floor in 1986. Here is Senator Kerry recently: John Kerry starts by showing the entry in a log he kept from 1969: "Feb 12: 0800 run to Cambodia."
Maybe they celebrate Christmas at a different time in Viet Nam. Perhaps Kerry went often into Cambodia and was there at Christmas and 6 weeks later. Or perhaps he's just making it all up.
He even brings up the magic hat again. This could actually be some fun. It's not like it's going to influence the choice of the President this time.
Byron York at NRO has, from August, 2004, a lot about Kerry Kontradictions--just about the Cambodia thing.
Tom McGuire at Just One Minute sounds eager to recover this ground.
We know from Kerry's hagiographer Douglas Brinkley (who wrote Tour of Duty about Kerry) that the Senator kept a diary of his time in Viet Nam (Brinkley quotes from it from time to time in the book). Let Kerry release that to internet scrutiny--if it says that he went to Cambodia time and again, then he will at last have defeated the Swifties, at least on this issue.
However, since Kerry has promised Tim Russert twice on TV to release his complete Naval records and never did it (even though he claims to have done so), I'm not holding my breath for the war diary.
I've read three books about this matter: Tour of Duty, Unfit for Command and Brown Water, Black Berets. All give one a lot of background for this now continuing, but meaningless, controversy.
UPDATE: Kerry in 1979 said this about Cambodia: "In fact I remember spending Christmas Eve in 1968 five miles across the Cambodian border..." Now his researcher has placed him 35 miles from Cambodia, in Cao Lanh, Viet Nam. Anyone but me see a contradiction between 5 miles inside Cambodia and 35 miles from Cambodia, still in Viet Nam? Anyone? Anyone? Buehler? Buehler?
Here's what Kerry himself wrote about Christmas Eve in his diary reprinted in Tour of Duty via Mark Steyn:
On December 24 1968, Kerry was at Sa Dec – that's well inside Vietnam, 55 miles from the Cambodian border – and waxing wistful to his diary about a quiet Christmas far from home: "Visions of sugarplums really do dance through your head and you think of stockings and snow and roast chestnuts and fires with birch logs and all that is good and warm and real. It's Christmas Eve."
T^he second yopu broach this subject, the immediate comparison is to the president's combat service record, or lack thereof.
I'm willing to believe that Kerry is right about his story, but I want some doucments revealed. Just calling the Swifties liars (which Kerry just did recently and repeatedly in the past) doesn't cut it.
I will say, however, that if one's military service is limited to TANG, it is not something that one can bring up if one is a politician if one served in TANG when others of your generation served in combat.
I, for one, do not believe that military service is necessary to be CIC. If indeed we have embarked on a decades long war against radical Islamics as you believe we have, military service may prove less valuable than other knowledge. I do not believe that such a war will be won w/ swift boats or F-18s.
As for calling the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth (a name whose length and clumsiness is reminescent of some of those radical Islamic groups like the Sword of Revenge for the Martyrs of April the 3rd or whatever.) liars, I continue to look askance @ those guys whose motivations, I suspect, are founded in their hatred of Sen. Kerry b/c of his stance agianst the war in Vietnam following his discharge from the Navy.
Huh? What in the world does the length of the groups name have to do with anything? And why are you comparing it to any radical Islamic group? There's no comparison at all.
And that name isn't a bit as long as ANSWER's full one is (Act Now to Stop War and End Racism), or Vietnam Veterans Against The War Anti-Imperialist, or Women's International League for Peace and Freedom or...well, you see the point.
But that's totally different I'm sure.
Why don't you leave it alone Rog?
The second you broach this subject, the immediate comparison is to the president's combat service record, or lack thereof.
(I cleaned up the spelling and removed the extraneous symbols - no need to thank me.)
Why would this be so? I’m really rather puzzled by your assumption. It is an odd one – unless you think that the best way of defending yourself is to attack your opponent.
The point about Kerry and his record is not to show who had the brighter combat record: Kerry or Bush. Bush did not run on his war record. Kerry did. But many people who fought in Viet Nam did not appreciate Kerry’s claims that the soldiers there raped, tortured and killed the Vietnamese AS A MATTER OF COURSE.
They also began to examine that medal-filled few months and found that there were some serious questions. And I’m sorry that you have a problem with the Swifties’ name. That bit about comparing them to radical Islamists is a nice smear though. You could get a nice spot in the upcoming Kerry campaign.
Senator von Munchausen.
The form is still a wild card, it seems, even after all this time. Odd, isn't it, that something so easily provided (and said to be supportive of Kerry) is so long in coming. Odd to the point of being peculiar, at best...
More importantly, he is pressing that same claim again, which revives the viability of the (ample) evidence. If Kerry would like people not to respond, he should have taken one or more of his many opportunities to be silent.
But then he's pretty clue-free when it comes to PR matters. (He actually seems to think he has a chance at the Democratic nomination in '08.)
Now John Kerry knows his own history, even if the rest of us don't know all of it. One of the things he knows is that John O'Neill has been a perpetual pain in the ass thorn in his side since 1971. Kerry has had this debate with O'Neill over 30 years. He also knows that a lot of veterans are mad as all hell at him for his testimony after the war. He knows this.
And JFK has to know, he HAS to, that if he declares for the presidency, that these vets aren't going to be quiet. They're going to make noise. He has to know that there are photos, video, images, testimony, etc. from Winter Soldier, the Senate, his time in Vietnam, etc.
So, you'd think a smart guy like Mr. Kerry would have a plan to handle all this as part of his run for the presidency, right? You'd think, but as far as I can tell, there was never -- never -- a plan until after the Swift Boat controversy exploded.
Remember how the Kerry campaign staffers had no real response for several weeks? What that tells me is the Kerry campaign simply wasn't ready, and that means the candidate wasn't ready.
Now, four years later, is he ready? That would mean a) getting the 180 into general circulation 2) resolving the Cambodia quote 3) some way of handling (oh, I don't know, maybe an apology?) the Winter Soldier testimony, and 4) demonstrating to vets that he understands their anger.
Anybody see John Kerry as doing any of those things? And he wants to run for president again?
I didn't think so. John Kerry is going to get whacked upside the head once again with this issue because he thinks he can respond to reasoned criticism the same way you do. Too bad.
1. Afraid of being identified?
2. Too weak in your arguements to be giving your name
3. You are John Kerry!
Got to be one of the above.....
2) Kerry volunteered for the Swift boats when the mission of the Swift boats was reasonably safe - crusing up and down the coast. Two weeks after he volunteered for easy, safe duty, the mission was changed to river interdiction.
Who was the coward -- at least pan-wise? Kerry.
I was wrong. Like comments about music, this one seems to have touched a hot button, so I retract my suggestion about leaving it alone.
I can't recall reading the Duke b/f but I concur heartily about posting under "Anonymous." I recall when I was young opening a book of quotations and being impressed w/ the enormous and diverse body of work written by "Anon."
So real names or pseudonyms please. If the latter, the longer and more riduculous the better.
It goes w/o saying that there is much controversy about what the most recent presidental candidates did or did not do in their military service.
That said, Anonymous the Defender (as opposed to Anonymous the Detractor)if you believe that flying in TANG which posed no risk of combat was braver than doing anything in a theater of operations, well to to state the proposition is to refute it.
Castigate the Senator all you like. If you chose to idolize the president on his record, I can only advise that all that glitters is not gold. Very little about Mr. Bush glitters. Even less of it is gold. Had it not been for Mr. Rove, Mr. Bush would still be an owner of the Texas Rangers, yet another his occupations for which he owes a debt to his father's friends.
Roger or Diomedes cited Ann Coulter a few months ago regarding the irrelevancy of presidential approval ratings in a non presidential election year. This blog, when the subject is political, contains comments about how this Democrat or that... and here you can fill in the blank.
For the past 6 months I think I have read more than 90% of what has been written by Roger and Diomedes, and what had been posted in response.
I cannot recall many, if any, postings or comments that praise the job Mr. Bush has done leading this country.
If some of you want to exercise your abilities to marshall facts and defend your opinion, defend that proposition. And, I am sure the Duke of Deland is w/ me here, real names or pseudonyms only.
And b/c it is Memorial Day, I will leave all of us to consider this fact which I read in the May 27 edition of the DP/RMN this weekend. The article was about Lt. Robert F. Keller whose remains were recovered on the island of Kiska in the Aleutians, 65 years after his plane crashed.
The article stated that in WW II, more than 78,000 U.S. troops went missing in action. Think of the number of people attending any home Broncos game @ Mile High, then add student body of a good sized Colorado HS.
Thank you ladies and gentlemen. Let us remind ourselves that w/o their sacrifice, our ability to express our opinions might not exist.
Members of Bush's TANG unit did combat in S E A. Bush volunteered, but was not selected.
In truth, the Left hasn't participated in a rational discussion since 1968.