Thursday, July 29, 2004

John Kerry: From War Hero To Aiding The Enemy and Slandering The Sacrifices of our Vietnam Veterans

As a former military officer, too young to have served in Vietnam, I respect and admire John Kerry’s war record. By all accounts, he served this country and the men around him well and Senator Kerry does not deserve criticism of the actions for which he has been decorated.

Unfortunately, the same can’t be said for his actions upon his return from Vietnam. His actions dishonored the majority of Vietnam veterans who served their country with honor. His behavior should raise serious questions about his fitness to serve as commander-in-chief. Not because he protested against an unpopular war, but because he slandered an entire generation of soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines.

Here are his own words: “They told stories that at times they had personally raped, cut off ears, cut off heads, tape wires from portable telephones to human genitals and turned up the power, cut off limbs, blown up bodies, randomly shot at civilians, razed villages in a fashion reminiscent of Genghis Khan, shot cattle and dogs for fun, poisoned food stocks, and generally ravaged the countryside of South Vietnam.”

In short, our military men routinely committed war crimes and the government sanctioned this type of behavior. This is simply untrue and should call into question John Kerry’s fitness to lead this country.

Many years ago, myself and a group of other ROTC students went to see the movie Apocalypse Now, one of my favorite movies of all times. It portrays the above-mentioned types of behaviors as the Vietnam norm and contains some of the strongest “characters,” you’ve ever seen in a war movie. It is also an indictment of the insanity of war.

Several days later, while discussing ear necklaces, our ROTC commander, Col. Richard Iori, one of the most decorated special forces commanders in the Army at the time, overheard us and delivered a lesson that I have carried with me since that day.

Paraphrased he told us that it was our duty as leaders and future officers to stop any hint of such behavior from our men. That only in an Army or unit with a complete breakdown of discipline would such atrocities ever be tolerated, much less celebrated. That war is the worst mankind has to offer and that what separated the American soldier from others is that we simply will not tolerate that type of behavior. He acknowledged that he had heard stories, but told us neither himself nor none of his superiors would have ever tolerated any of these actions.

This coming from a man who was a career soldier and more decorated than any politician you can name. He certainly wasn’t attending anti-war rallies that the North Vietnamese used to demoralize our prisoners of war and demonize America around the world.

If John Kerry wants to go around the country and draw a distinction between himself and President Bushs’ service record it is good politics to do so.

One served in Vietnam and one didn’t.

But Kerry has already started the whine about anybody questioning his post-war activities, his slander and aiding the enemy by appearing at anti-war activities. And of course there is still his anti-military voting record since he arrived in the Senate, a tar baby he will find hard to dislodge.

His spin is that you can’t question John Kerry’s patriotism for anything he did after the war because of his service during the war. Of course this is nonsense. But the mainstream press allows him to get by with it.

But if we use that logic, why the flap over President Bush’s National Guard service? The president wasn’t a war hero but he did receive an honorable discharge. Look at what he’s accomplished since. He has led this nation in an unparalleled time of terrorism on our soil. Every military friend I know respects him as commander-in-chief. So does most of America.

Which of course is the democratic strategy. Use the liberal media to make a mountain out of nothing while painting Kerry as a war hero. Constantly bash anyone who dares criticize his slander of Vietnam veterans or his anti-war, anti-American activities upon his return.

Try to kill the advantage of having led this country in wartime rather than led a patrol boat.

Minimize the fact that your candidate is another anti-military, blame-America-first elitist. Another democratic commander-in-chief in the mold of Jimmy Carter or Bill Clinton. Something we really can’t afford in the dangerous times in which we live.


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