2004 US Presidential Election
August 24, 2004
| Kerry Vet Confirms Cambodia Story
From the Patriot-News :
The [SwiftVet] ads were denounced yesterday at a rally in the Pennsylvania Capitol Rotunda by a former Kerry boat mate, Del Sandusky of Clearwater, Fla., who evoked cheers from about 100 onlookers when he said, “I served with John Kerry [in Vietnam]. All the rest of those guys in that commercial two weeks ago were full of doo-doo. … I am here today to validate John Kerry’s medals.”
Hat Tip : reader bananas
Posted by Alan Brain at August 24, 2004 09:58 PM | TrackBack
Don’t just take Sandusky’s word for it. How about…John O’Neill:
Posted by: bananas at August 25, 2004 12:17 AM
The heading for this article is deceptive, because the author infers that the Christmas in Cambodia story has been proven true, but that is not the case. Though the Democratic Party has come out and said that Kerry was really in Cambodia a few weeks later and was just “mistaken” on the day, there is no official record of any trip into Cambodia. And just for the record, a grown man who uses the term “doo doo” probably ought to have his credibility questioned anyway.
Posted by: shevall at August 25, 2004 12:22 AM
As to the comment by John Oneil to President Nixon, I would be interested as to what his age was and how many times he had spoken to the President of the United States. It is a very brief interchange and he could well have been very nervous or pressured to respond as he did, besides, it doesn’t change the geography of the region—the border hasn’t moved.
Posted by: shevall at August 25, 2004 12:32 AM
So from this out-of-context statement some are now saying that Kerry does not have to prove anything about his overblown statement about an event that was seared in his memory, because now O’Neill lied.
If you read the whole text of the statement by O’Neill to Nixon you would find that he did say that he was in Cambodia but then quickly explained that he was along the border in the waterways near Cambodia, not actually in Cambodia.
When grilled by Alan Comes tonight on Fox, he explained that very clearly. Taken out of context, it appears he is claiming the same as Kerry. However, the full text shows that he corrected the impression immediately. Kerry has never corrected nor personally acknowledged his mistake about that statement on being in Cambodia. Nor do I ever expect him to do so. Apparently his spin doctors will fix it for him as time goes by.
And now it appears that this epiphany of an event was really sometime before or maybe later. Nice try at backtracking.. I guess the Dems think that most Americans are too dumb to see through this charade and constant drum beat whining that “Bush is behind it… Bush lies… the Swift Boat Lies… Cheyney is a coward… only Kerry tells the truth…Kerry supporters never use attack ads.”
I can only marvel at how silly these folks look evertime during any of the talk shows when they have to quickly feint, duck, dodge and refuse to answer any charges about Soros, Moore and their own Band of 527s… especially about the high ranking Democratic power brokers with former direct ties to the DNC who are now running the Kerry 527s.
It is apparent that Sen. Kerry is now being caught in a web of his own words and has frequently used his Viet Nam experience to suit whatever occasion or need he had at the time… anti-war hero or just plan hero… one for the home crowd and one for “away games.”
This all is just a warm up I feel to the real heat he will take on his recent conversion to being a moderate on taxes, abortion, the war and foreign policy once the comparison to his Senate record comes under scrutiny. I only wonder how they can blame Bush for those votes.
Posted by: steve at August 25, 2004 12:49 AM
I don’t know about the rest of you yahoos, but I am fed up with and sick of this shit. Having previously been inclined to vote for GWB, the Swift Vote Veterans are working hard to change my mind. Who gives a damn what Kerry or Bush 35 years ago. Who can belive anyone anymore. Worse, all this mudslinging is drowning out all meaningful discourse about what they plan to do in the next 4 years. What about the world economy, the global environment, education, and the building of a new, real, alliance of free peoples. This “news” stinks. The Command Post needs a new “tabloid” page if you’re all going to continue posting this crap. If this issue continues to dominate the discussion, we’re in a world of hurt.
Posted by: j at August 25, 2004 02:19 AM
Kerry should release his records and prove he is telling the truth. Anyway, he is on record lying about the defining moment of his life.
I find it odd you find this story tabloid. Kerry has offered Vietnam as his qualification. He is the guy who ducks issues. He can’t keep a story straight. What does the man stand for?
This story is very important actually. It show Kerry to be a liar more interested in climbing than getting the job done. It shows the media is in cahoots with Kerry and is trying to cover for him, and it shows which posters will twist to cover for Kerry. I never saw you complain when the AWOL fiction was all over the news.
Posted by: jones at August 25, 2004 07:27 AM
J, ordinarily we would ignore events from so long ago, but since Kerry can’t go five seconds without mentioning how he “served” in Vietnam it really makes it difficult not to. Nor does the fact that Kerry doesn’t have any policies other then not being Bush.
Kerry’s campaign promisies change on a daily basis, along with his positions on issues. When he’s not promising to make the US subservient to France, he’s usually labasting Bush for overextending/underextening troops, acting too unilaterally or too mulitlaterally, and so on. How can you have discourse with a man who has no position?
Posted by: Brian at August 25, 2004 07:32 AM
Yes. Kerry’s lies are sooooo important. Except, guess what, they aren’t lies. As the story above demonstrates, Kerry was off on his date, it being near Christmas, rather than on Christmas that he went into Cambodia. He admitted that his first Purple Heart may have been self-inflicted, but then he had never claimed to the contrary. The rest of the Swifty’s claims have pretty much been disproved. All you guys are left with is that somebody (not Kerry) put a V on his Silver Star commendation, which is already an award for valor. I have a major feeling this whole story is about to turn against Bush.
Posted by: rdelephant at August 25, 2004 07:46 AM
You are just talking and hoping the story goes away. You minimze Kerry’s lies and try to paint the other 150 as horrible liars.
Release the records. Your squirming is sickening.
Posted by: jones at August 25, 2004 07:54 AM
Although I am extremely sick of this story as well, I doubt that it will turn against Bush. As long as Kerry is forced to react instead of act, as long is he is forced onto the defensive, that is good for Bush. That’s good for any politician. Further, it only gives the appearance that Kerry lacks conviction; an undesirable trait in someone conducting a War on Terror. Flush the Johns in 2004.
I wanted to take this opportunity to thank everyone on this site for making it an entertaining run. Other than tying up a few loose threads, my alter ego “johnnymozart” has sung his “Requiem”. I am not joking; I will not be present by this or any other nom du blog. (You may hear from my brother “Kills Alone” from time to time, but as he is currently doing his little “Walkabout” across the world, those times will likely be rare.) Alan and Michelle, thank you for allowing such a incorrigible wiseass such as myself a vehicle for my opinions. But most of all, my thanks to my new friends: Cap’n DOC, TexasGal, Max/Ubique :), Mark Buehner, and lewy 14. Drop me a line anytime. :)
Ya’ a’ te’ eh.
Posted by: johnnymozart at August 25, 2004 08:08 AM
If it were William Calley running for President would you care about what happened 35 years ago?
Posted by: Jack Okie at August 25, 2004 09:19 AM
the world made more sense every time you gave your two cents.
Posted by: wafflestomper at August 25, 2004 10:21 AM
JO: But it isn’t Calley running for President, is it? Nor is there any reasonable comparison to be made between him and Kerry.
Such hypotheticals are content-free entirely.
Not even a Nice Try on that one.
Posted by: Don at August 25, 2004 10:50 AM
Sandusky says he was in Cambodia plenty of times.
He doesn’t mention if Ltjg Kerry was with him.
Now Kerry’s whole chain of command is against him. What records do they have access to through their 180s? Could those records discredit the KBOB?
You better hope not.
If I was a good lawyer, I would have those records salted away. I’d let team Kerry start making hysterical statements. I’d wait til Kerry sent a begging team to Bush to please make those mean old swifties stop. I’d wait a few weeks more let the hysteria really build.
Then I’d do an intel dump.
Or I might do a consorting with the enemy commercial first. You know. Honeymoon in Paris. We’ll still have Paris.
It is really too bad about those loyal to Kerry. The KBOBs are going down with the ship.
The new Kerry campaign motto:
sauve qui peut
What is the War Hero Afraid of?
Posted by: M. Simon at August 25, 2004 10:56 AM
Of course Calley is not running for President. In Calley’s case there is ample evidence he comitted war crimes.
In Kerry’s case we only have his word as an officer and a gentleman.
What is the War Hero Afraid of?
Posted by: M. Simon at August 25, 2004 11:00 AM
Kerry never in Cambodia at all according to his own diary — as per WaPo editorial, “KERRY’S CAMBODIA WHOPPER”
Kerry’s Viet Nam diary ends with him wondering what it would be like on the Cambodia side of the border! I guess Kerry’s story needs to change again.
The diary is surely right—otherwise Kerry would have brought up such illegal border crossing and governmental lies during his war protest years. But not until he sees Martin Sheen in Apocalypse Now does Kerry manufacture his story in 1979-and has told it 50 times since (acc to SwiftVet docs).
Posted by: mary2004 at August 25, 2004 11:04 AM
The democrats have decided to bargain with the devil. In this case the devil is in the details. They hope that by parsing everything everybody says down to the very punctuation marks themselves they can somehow cleanse the record and/or discredit the swifites.
While this approach has some merit, it does little to confront the truly damaging aspects of the swifties attacks, and that is their motivation.
This motivation springs directly from thier contempt for the man. Try as he Might, Kerry cannot erase the words he said and wrote after his return. The swifties have planned a very thoughtful assault on Kerry and it’s all heading toward the same rally point: Kerry’s breaking of faith with his fellow service men.
The swifties have focused like lasers on this and they will not be distracted. Their campaign is well planned and thanks to recent donations well funded. The words Kerry wrote, the speeches he gave, the impact this had on those still serving will become the day to day talking points of this election.
Thus far Kerry’s group hasn’t shown any ability to roll with these punches. Whining about the 527s or sending Cleland on a beau Geste mission simply won’t get this done. Kerry needs something and he needs it right now. The window is closing rapidly because once the press smells blood in the water, they won’t care who gets eaten in their feeding frenzy.
Fun, fun, fun.
Posted by: skip at August 25, 2004 11:04 AM
Skip: About as good an example of Wishful Thinking as I’ve seen on the matter. Clearly the Right-wing Bloggistes agree with you — but then, they always did. So they and you don’t really matter.
Out there in The World, the trend is rapidly swinging the other way.
Keep watching — the SwiVets aren’t becoming more credible day by day. They do reinforce the folks who always believed them initially, but that’s merely preaching to the choir. Every time yet another individual who really Was there comes forward to challenge the fantasies of Those Who Were Not There, the SwiVets are shown to be the pathetic tale-tellers they so clearly are.
Love the misplaced optimism, though. Self-Delusion in the opposition in Politics is a positive sort of force. Keeps you from seeing what’s Really important in this discussion.
You just hang in there, y’hear! Meanwhile, the folks who really Matter aren’t buying the same stuff you are.
Got some UPW to do today. Have fun!
Posted by: Don at August 25, 2004 11:09 AM
The issue about Kerry’s credibility may wear thin after much repetition like the media frenzy for Bush’s ANG records did some months ago. However, it is relevant not only because Kerry has made his service in Vietnam the lynch pin of his campaign but because his representation of that service has raised questions about his judgement and leadership ability.
Note: President Bush has not been speaking about this issue on the campaign trail except to provide the same general answer to media inquiries - All 527’s should stop airing these ads. BTW - Michael Moore’s movie and Move On organization haven’t resonated with all their many millions, but the Swift Vets with far less funding has. This issue has struck a deep chord in the American memory and it will not easily be dismissed by spin.
While I don’t expect the Swift Vets accusations to fade away anytime soon (rather the opposite), with the Republican convention and during the following weeks look to see the heat rachet up on Kerry’s Senate career.
Read Steve’s post above for an excellent analysis of this issue and what’s to come.
johnnymozart - Thanks for the excellent posts. We’ll miss you.
Posted by: Jim at August 25, 2004 11:10 AM
Does Del confirm that special forces were inserted five miles into Cambodia? If not, Kerry’s current story is still unconfirmed. It is not good enough to be in Cambodia, it needs to be according to the details given. The reason why Kerry cited this on the floor of the Senate was to discredit Reagan’s foreign policy, to whit that it was analogous to Nixon’s “secret” invasion of Cambodia. Kerry also recalled the Vietnamese drinking during the Christmas holiday. So, what holiday occurred when Kerry really did go into Vietnam?
All this aside here’s why this issue is relevant. Kerry was actively trying to get us out of Vietnam. This included slandering his fellow vets and used by the enemy in torture of our POWs. He wrongly predicted that the pullout would not have a negative effect. Because of the pullout he was advocating, millions of people in Southeast Asia died.
Now he wants us to pull out of Iraq and those around him like Michael Moore have accused our solidiers of killing civilians. Kerry says this is being “smart”. But the last time he was “smart” about another war the results were disasterous.
When Clinton lies no one dies. When Kerry lies millions die.
Posted by: Rich Blinne at August 25, 2004 11:11 AM
Why thanks Don, I’ve learned that anytime you write something irrelevant in response to a post it’s a clear sign that you have nothing substantive to say on the matter.
the people who really matter indeed. What a large load of offal and then some kind sir.
Posted by: skip at August 25, 2004 11:12 AM
Get over this BULL SHIT headline. John Kerry’s campaign has changed its story 3 times and NOW ADMITS that he was NEVER in CAMBODIA as follows:
This is from Glenn Reynolds at MSNBC and quotes
Others — also writing in the Post — are even harsher:
Most of the debate between the former shipmates who swear by John Kerry and the group of other Swift boat veterans who are attacking his military record focuses on matters that few of us have the experience or the moral standing to judge. But one issue, having nothing to do with medals, wounds or bravery under fire, goes to the heart of Kerry’s qualifications for the presidency and is therefore something that each of us must consider. That is Kerry’s apparently fabricated claim that he fought in Cambodia.
Posted by: leaddog2 at August 25, 2004 11:13 AM
If the swifties are so close to self destruct why would Kerry make himself look weak by sending a delegation to Bush to make the mean ole swifties stop? Please massa Bush. Make da whippins stop.
Sounds like a desperation move.
In lawyer terms: begging for a plea bargain.
You know Kerry could put this whole bit to rest if he would relese more than 6 pages of his records. Like fer instance the other 90+ pages. What is the boy afraid of? Bush did it. Does he have more courage than Kerry?
For an issue with no traction the press is being forced to cover the Kerry retractions, conflicting statements, and stories from the KBOBs that don’t match.
Frankly though I like yer attitude and I hope it permiates your camp. It is the stuff of surprise attacks.
What is the War Hero Afraid of?
Posted by: M. Simon at August 25, 2004 11:28 AM
BTW ole Kerry removed 20 pages of records from his site.
Now why do you suppose he did that?
What is the War Hero Afraid of?
Posted by: M. Simon at August 25, 2004 11:31 AM
Hey Don looks like you’re try to peg the needle on the old smarm o meter.
I guess when all else fails try condescension, eh?
AGain, let’s examine the motivation of the swifties. Will smarm and condescension dissuade them? hardly, but do Prattle On Don, Do Prattle On?
I’m assuming that your use of caps somehow lends emphasis to the empty words.
Posted by: skip at August 25, 2004 11:40 AM
John Kerry wrote a book about his ‘Nam experience.
You can read it here:
What is the War Hero Afraid of?
Posted by: M. Simon at August 25, 2004 11:43 AM
The Kerry/Calley analogy falls flat. When Kerry was accused of being a war criminal in 1996 the “swifties” publically defended him. Here’s a clue to the Kerry partisans: it is the false accusation of war crimes that motivates the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth. They will not tolerate the false accusations to stand and that includes false accusations of war crimes against John Forbes Kerry.
From what records I have seen, Lt. JG Kerry was a mediocre junior officer who was rightfully honorably discharged. There is conflicting evidence on whether he inflated his record concerning his medals. Those who claim “proof” on either side are blinded partisans. If I was on a jury, I would probably sided with the “swifties” because their story hasn’t changed while Kerry’s has. But to tell the truth, I really don’t care who is right and because of that I am willing to give Kerry the benefit of the doubt here.
On the other hand, what Kerry did after coming back from the war should be roundly condemned. This is relevant because the same people doing the exact same with respect to the war in Iraq (and as some of you recall attempted to do with the war in Afghanistan until it became too popular).
We cannot afford to lose the war on terror. As a moderate, I hate all the mudslinging on both sides. That being said, the focus the SwiftVets have placed on Kerry’s anti-Vietnam war record is a valuable service to the American elecorate. The Republicans and the President haven’t done this fearing the Democrat’s machine of personal destruction and in the President’s case fear of re-raising the National Guard issue. The “swifties” yet again have entered the breach and are truly doing the Lord’s work. Thank you for serving your country, again.
Posted by: Rich Blinne at August 25, 2004 11:47 AM
Rich Blinne - Well said.
Posted by: Jim at August 25, 2004 11:58 AM
Sandusky is too vested in Kerry’s interests to say anything other than he is told. Note how few of Kerry’s “Band of Others” get to speak on stage as part of the “War Hero™ Dog & Pony Act”. They are now carefully choreographed to avoid anyone of the “others” from dispensing conflicting information.
Posted by: ET at August 25, 2004 11:58 AM
There is a big difference between Calley and Kerry. Calley is a proven war criminal. For Kerry we only have his word as an officer and a gentleman.
What is the War Hero Afraid of?
Posted by: M. Simon at August 25, 2004 12:20 PM
But most of all, my thanks to my new friends: Cap’n DOC, TexasGal, Max/Ubique :), Mark Buehner, and lewy 14. Drop me a line anytime. :)
I’m going to miss reading your prose .. thanks for the insights you have brought me personally on so many issues here at CP. I’ll be in touch through our “back channel” if the facilitator is still available .. ;-)
Posted by: TexasGal at August 25, 2004 12:21 PM
I have taken to calling them KBOBs. For obvious reasons.
What is the War Hero Afraid of?
Posted by: M. Simon at August 25, 2004 12:22 PM
Watching the scurrying and parsing of every detail in any statement by the SBVT by the Democratic rebuttal machine is very interesting. Watching the media trying to stay focus on bashing Bush is equally enteraining. Sooner or later, someone of the mainstream media is going to find the Irish pennants in Kerry cloak of denial and there will be one mass rush to beat each other to start the disrobing of the Democratic rebuttal strategy. Last night, Michael Dobbs of the Washington Post hinted as much when he reported how frustrated he was with the Kerry’s camp of denying any access to Kerry or the BOB group for follow up questions.
The Democratics are investing a whole of capital at a time not of their choosing nor according to their plan… all for a mere 2 ads costing something less than $100K to produce. Why? Dispatching Cleland is both a media play as well as a sign of weakness. I cannot believe that they are literally begging the President to stop another group’s right to free speech. This would be like sending a Republican congressional stalwart to Kerry asking that he somehow stop the demonstratros from acting up in NYC next week.
While the Dems have been able to punch some holes or identify potential gaps in the SBVTs statements, this has so far only gotten more attention to other areas where the Vets’ claims have been substaniated —- the Cambodia excursion and unintentional self-inflicted wounds which should nullify the first Purple Heart, just as Kerry’s commander at thet time had rightfully determined to be case.
I still think all of this is just individual rounds being fired for harrassment and registering targets. The “fire for effect” command has yet to be given when the entire battery opens up later on Kerry’s Senate record, his tour of duty under Dukakis, his visits to the NV party officials and Communists as well as more recent flips on troop redeployments.
Watching all this unfold reminds me of the story out of Khe San when a young, newly arrived Marine wondered why all the fuss about just a single WP puff of smoke round going off in the compound. No one answered him as they were all diving for trenches and the bunkers. He soon found out when over 50 NVA motar and arterillery rounds soon started pounding the whole area and runways.
I believe the SBVTs are only firing the registration fires for what is coming next.
Posted by: steve at August 25, 2004 02:29 PM
I was wondering if The New Soldier was going to show up before elections…
Posted by: JLL3 at August 25, 2004 02:34 PM
My intent was not to equate Kerry with Calley, it was see if Don considers everything that happened 35 years ago irrelevant. What is the threshold for relevance? WWII ended almost 60 years ago. No lessons for us now, Don?
I hope you’re right.
Posted by: Jack Okie at August 25, 2004 03:13 PM
If you guys want to really get creeped out, check out the comments sections over at Atrios’ site. These people are positively foaming at the mouth. They are terrified. And they openly collude on the best way to demolish various SwiftVet critics, Googling their public records, etc. They express no interest whatsoever in actually addressing any of the charges leveled at Kerry.
After hanging out there for a day (the traffic is HUGE) I feel like I need some kind of brain shower or something to wash their open and ferocious hatred out of my mind. Seriously, read their shit for ten minutes and you feel like you’re at a Klan rally or something. Disgusting and depressing.
Posted by: jackson zed at August 25, 2004 03:20 PM
Do something better. Pass on these links to Everyone you know!
Take this John Kerry pattern even further. Read the articles below in relation to Kerry’s actions and think of NORTH KOREA if Kerry is President, let alone Iran.
Why do Kerry’s Cambodia Lies Matter for America in 2004! Read this article.
How the main stream media is trying their best to COVER-UP Hanoi John Kerry’s Web of Lies. Such cover-ups appear to be the same types of things used by Pravada and other Cold War enemies of freedom.
These Main Stream Media represent COVER-UPS just like al-Jazeera’s style of propaganda today is BLANTANTLY supporting all Islamofascist Killers.
Enemies are enemies! Both kinds of media can kill Americans.
Captain Ed has done invaluable work on his blog. Among other things he and several others have revealed the Truth about David Alston’s time in Vietnam during the January 30, 1969 to March 1st, 1969 time period when the Kerry campaign claimed that David Alston was fighting with John Kerry. (At the Democratic convention, on the Kerry We Site, etc. etc)
This fiction about David Alston was revealed to me on Captain Ed’s blog in this article.
Pass all of these links on to all loyal Americans. We are in another fight for survival!!! The next article talks about what John Kerry is STILL DOING in support of America’s enemies. It is VERY SCARY because it reveals the Kerry mind-set of NOW ….. NOT 30 years ago.
Combine this present day activity with John Kerry’s VOTES AGAINST EVERY major military and intelligence program of the last 20 years and you have the man America’s enemies like North Korea and Iran love.
The first Google Links about John Kerry and North Korea are as follows.
John Kerry’s North Korea lie
Posted by: leaddog2 at August 25, 2004 03:24 PM
Steve, to change your analogy slightly: SBVT are the OV-1F “Bird Dogs” or OV-10 “Broncos”.
Posted by: Rich Blinne at August 25, 2004 03:29 PM
“As the story above demonstrates, Kerry was off on his date, it being near Christmas, rather than on Christmas that he went into Cambodia.”
Forgive the eye rolling, but there is a world of difference in mistaking an event that happened in “January or February” (according to one Kerry spokesman) as happening on Christmas. Just in case the liberal elite have forgotten, for the vast majority of Americans the specific day of Christmas has special significance, either religiously or socially. I would expect a Roman Catholic like Kerry to be especially aware of Christmas. So, for anyone to suggest that someone might just “mistakenly” think it’s Christmas when it’s actually days, weeks or months off defies all reasonable logic.
If, as the defenders claim, Kerry was just mistaken abouth the date, that makes me even more inclined to not vote fopr him. After all, as “dumb” as George Bush is supposed to be, I doubt even he ever confused mid-January with Christmas.
Posted by: submandave at August 25, 2004 04:05 PM
Good point subman, good point. If Kerry can’t tell Christmas eve from some other day, hmmmm, what’s that say about him?
Posted by: skip at August 25, 2004 04:23 PM
skip That’s positively searing, searing I tell you…
Posted by: Cap'n DOC at August 25, 2004 04:40 PM
Well, according to Don, a vet’s word is no better than that of a convicted felon, so can we really rely on this guy’s corroboration, such as it is, of Kerry?
Posted by: TL at August 25, 2004 04:53 PM
leaddog2: Here’s an idea. Instead of duplicate posts at the CP, create a blog. Call it, I dunno, the Nexus for the Howling Mad, or the Foot-Stampers Compendium, arrange your assorted hyperlinks therein, post the URL here and pat yourself on the back.
I think it’s a capital idea. Just capital.
Posted by: bananas at August 25, 2004 06:12 PM
Everybody knows the difference between Christmas and January, but remembering the difference many years later is another thing entirely (especially if it makes a better story). Who cares whether it was Christmas of January ??? Only you Bush partisans, I assure you.
Posted by: rdelephant at August 25, 2004 07:19 PM
“leaddog2: Here’s an idea. Instead of duplicate posts at the CP, create a blog. Call it, I dunno, the Nexus for the Howling Mad, or the Foot-Stampers Compendium, arrange your assorted hyperlinks therein, post the URL here and pat yourself on the back.”
Wonderful. And you can do the same. Call it somethin’ like ‘Screamin’YellowHerbisms’.
“I think it’s a capital idea. Just capital.”
The italicized portion Posted by: Dirk DBA bananas at August 25, 2004
Posted by: Cap'n DOC at August 25, 2004 07:22 PM
Positively searing comment, rdelephant. Searing.
Posted by: Cap'n DOC at August 25, 2004 07:24 PM
Apparently Senator Spineless Windsock has lots of trouble with dates:
“John Kerry speaking at a Martin Luther King day celebration in Virginia last year said, quote, “I remember well April 1968, I was serving in Vietnam. A place of violence. When the news reports brought home to me and my crew mates the violence back home and the tragic news that one of the bullets flying that terrible spring took the life of Dr. King.” That date, of Dr. King’s death, was April 4, 1968. According to kerry’s website, it was not until November 17, 1968, that he reported for duty in Vietnam.” c/o Fox’s Grapevine
Posted by: TL at August 25, 2004 07:42 PM
Human memory is pretty damn fallible. I see it every day. The elapse of years, or especially decades, can conflate events that were months or years apart. Wanting to believe something because it makes a better story (which is all that Kerry seems to be guilty of in both cases) or for some baser motive, makes it even worse.
Posted by: rdelephant at August 25, 2004 08:14 PM
Interesting response, and one that explains why you, Don, Forrest, and the rest are so ready to defend Kerry despite overwhelming evidence that he’s a rank liar and opportunist: for whatever reason, you want to believe. Facts be damned.
I’m starting to think there might be something to my “battered spouse” hypothesis.
Posted by: TL at August 25, 2004 08:29 PM
TL: could you tell us where Kerry was in early 1968? Maybe you could. He was in theatre in the Gulf of Tonkin on the USS Gridley, which was engaged in support operations, service which was earning him his Vietnam service and campaign medals. According to this site, which is not particularly friendly towards Kerry, it was a ‘fairly gruelling tour of duty’. Kerry had volunteered for Swift Boat duty several months beforehand and was awaiting assignment. Facts be damned, indeed.
Posted by: bananas at August 25, 2004 08:51 PM
Jeez, I’m sorry. This is kind of a mixed bag. On the one hand, now that I know that being within 100 miles of something is the same as being “in” something, I’m awfully embarassed about that post (and also for my posts about Kerry’s Holiday in Cambodia — by that standard he probably was “in” Cambodia that Christmas getting his memory seared).
On the other hand, I’ve just found out about all kinds of bragging rights I never knew I had. With this new standard, I can now say that I’ve been in Julia Roberts, Kerry Walsh, Pam Anderson and all kinds of other beautiful women that previously I’d only been near. I’m not the bragging type, so these women won’t have to worry about my sullying their reputations, but I suppose it’s a nice option to have, from a certain point of view.
So, sorry and thanks.
Posted by: TL at August 25, 2004 09:05 PM
I was serving in Vietnam. A place of violence.
J F Kelly, Jr., 2iC USS Gridley.
It was a fairly grueling tour of duty. Our helicopter was shot up trying to rescue a downed pilot and the door gunner was killed. The crew performed well and John Kerry’s performance in all aspects of his duty was outstanding. Drafting his fitness reports was an exercise in the use of superlatives. In fact, of the thirty or so officers, I counted him in the top half dozen, no mean feat for an ensign.
That ‘100 miles’ was scant protection for the dead guy, nor consolation for his family and friends. But you seem to think that the crew of the Gridley weren’t, as Kerry said, ‘serving in Vietnam’. Did that gunner deserve his Vietnam service and campaign medals? Did Kerry? Laugh it up, dude. Shame is overrated.
Posted by: bananas at August 25, 2004 11:00 PM
Oddly enough, this is the history section for the time under discussion:
GRIDLEY operated along the California coast until sailing for the Orient 18 November. She left Subic Bay 2 January 1967 for plane guard duty in the China Sea and the Gulf of Tonkin. After varied duties in the fighting zone, she sailed for Australia en route to the West Coast and arrived Long Beach 8 June to prepare for future action.
In July 1968, the ship departed her homeport of Long Beach for an extensive overhaul and modernization at Bath Iron Works in Bath, ME. Upon arrival in Maine, the ship was temporarily decommissioned in order to receive the Naval Tactical Data System (NTDS). GRIDLEY returned to Long Beach in January 1970 and would make her 5th and 6th deployments to the South China Sea in 1971 and 1972.
Posted by: jones at August 25, 2004 11:12 PM
Thanks, jones. The history and cite I’d already provided were lacking. Repeating them helped. Maybe that’s why you employed the ‘oddly’ proviso. Still, you certainly nailed down that troublesome 6th deployment.
Posted by: bananas at August 25, 2004 11:35 PM
I would imagine that’s because the dead flew from the ship to Viet Nam, where all the shooting was going on. That’s what helicopters did back then, from what I’m told.
But, hey, if you read Kerry’s quote and immediately thought that he was talking about being parked on a ship in the Tonkin Gulf or the China Sea, that’s fine. We just see things differently. You see somebody casually mentioning that he’d been in the service when they announced MLK’s death, and I see a rank opportunist finding another wholly gratuitous moment to remind the whole f$%#ing world that he went to Viet Nam. It’s just a difference of perspective.
I’m still psyched I can say I was “in” Julie Andrews when I was 15.
Posted by: TL at August 26, 2004 01:14 AM
Deny Kerry was serving in Vietnam at the time he said he was when presented with evidence if you like. It merely makes you look a bit of a twat.
Posted by: bananas at August 26, 2004 02:17 AM
By the same token, I must have been “in Vietnam” not that long ago, on His Royal Thai Majesty’s Ship Sukothai. Certainly closer to Vietnam than Kerry was on the Gridley. And much closer to Cambodia.
But your point, that Kerry’s words, while not literally true, are close enough, is well taken. Any criticism based upon his service ‘in Vietnam’ starting in November is pure sophistry and nit-picking. TL’s original error is quite understandable though, Kerry’s website is misleading on this point.
No, I’m not going to add “that wouldn’t be the first time”, at least the media are now covering, rather than covering-up, the issue. Some of the SwiftVets claims don’t hold water, and should be withdrawn. But many, many do hold up, and haven’t been challenged by Kerry’s campaign, or have been challenged with multiple inconsistent and unverifiable stories.
Posted by: aebrain at August 26, 2004 09:10 AM
Quick dose of context: Kerry, and everybody that works for him or supports him, has been calling the President a liar and a fraud for well over a year, even when presented with well-researched evidence debunking those claims. Kerry has put integrity at issue, so it is entirely fair to put his statements through the ringer. Do I give a damn where Kerry was when MLK died. Not at all. Does it matter when somebody tries to sell himself as the “credible” candidate or the smart candidate. Yep.
He’s not only a liar, he’s a really dumb liar, and he lies about stuff that just cements that. Again, our smarter candidate is losing a fight he picked himself.
Shall we talk about the flying dog named VC that was blown from the deck of Kerry’s boat onto another boat, unharmed, when a mine went off under Kerry’s boat?
Posted by: TL at August 26, 2004 10:04 AM
The feeding frenzy is on, the research about Kerry’s MLK quote is typical of the pattern.
This has to be hurting Kerry, and it has to be hurting the press too. Nah, that’s just wishful thinking on my part. Not until the papers face bankruptcy will they even consider change.
Posted by: skip at August 26, 2004 12:22 PM
jones, Brian — this may be too late to get to you (I’ve been off line for a couple), but I wanted to acknowledge your responses to my bitch and state that you’re right, of course — Kerry has made the question of his service record pertinent. Implicit in my inclination to vote for Bush is the point that I didn’t find it persuasive (and the whole forgotting what I did with my medals always bugged me). I’m still sick of hearing about it. It’s still misdirecting the discussion. Perhaps there’s no other way than to attack him on the ground he has chosen, but I’m now turning the chanel when I hear that start.
Posted by: j at August 26, 2004 09:35 PM