Kerry critics still aren’t convinced: Swift Boat members, others insist senator isn’t | MassCops

Kerry critics still aren’t convinced: Swift Boat members, others insist senator isn’t

Discussion in 'Politics & Law Enforcement' started by kwflatbed, Nov 7, 2007.

  1. kwflatbed

    kwflatbed MassCops Angel Staff Member

    [SIZE=+1]Kerry critics still aren’t convinced: Swift Boat members, others insist senator isn’t telling the truth[/SIZE]

    Patriot Ledger State House Bureau

    BOSTON - A liar. A traitor. Hanoi John.

    U.S. Sen. John Kerry’s comments on Monday regarding a possible future bid for the presidency, and his arming up against the group Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, are reopening old wounds from the Vietnam War and the 2004 presidential race.

    ‘‘He’s a liar,’’ said J. Craig Herman of Pahoa, Hawaii, a former U.S. Navy officer and registered Republican. ‘‘Real heroes and real Navy officers do not not waltz around with a ... camera taking pictures of themselves on duty.’’

    While some veterans question Kerry’s military decorations and criticize his subsequent actions as a Vietnam War protester, others say they just never warmed to the Massachusetts Democrat’s style.

    ‘‘There’s something weasely about him,’’ said Elliot Olson, a self-described independent voter from Minneapolis. ‘‘You can compare him to Bill Clinton, but with Clinton you know what you’re getting.’’

    The 63-year-old Kerry said Monday that he might run again for president, perhaps in 2012. He also said he has compiled a dossier on his critics in Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, a group that dogged Kerry in the 2004 presidential race.

    The comments, reprinted on political blogs including, and, prompted hundreds of e-mails critical of the Vietnam veteran turned war protestor turned politician.

    ‘‘I see John Kerry as a traitor to this country,’’ said Stephen Chudej of Plano, Texas, who describes himself as a political independent. ‘‘I think what he did was treachery and treason.’’

    In 2004, Swift Boat Veterans for Truth accused Kerry of embellishing his military service to further his political career, a view that seems right to Tom Mustin of Coronada, Calif., a former Navy lieutenant commander who says he has no involvement with the Swift Boat group.

    ‘‘You don’t get that kind of reaction from your comrades in arms because they’re in a different political party,’’ said Mustin, a Republican. ‘‘It’s the way he tried to amplify what he did and create a war-hero record for himself. That’s very offensive.’’

    Others faulted Kerry for not, in 2004, signing a waiver to allow the Navy to release his military records.

    ‘‘It was such a simple thing for him to do, he could have deflated the whole Swift Boat attacks,’’ said Terry Baugh of San Diego, a registered Republican.
    Democrat Mark Keaney of Pensacola, Fla., a retired Navy commander, said: ‘‘Until Kerry releases his total military record, there can be no discussion about his past or his future.’’

    Although Kerry ultimately did sign a waiver - in 2005, after the presidential election - the information remains available only to members of the media and not the general public, critics charge. They also would like to see Kerry’s journal and self-made films covering his Vietnam service.

    John O’Neill of Houston, a co-founder of Swift Boat Veterans for Truth and author of the 2004 book ‘‘Unfit for Command,’’ said Kerry cannot refute his own 1971 statements condemning fellow Vietnam vets.

    ‘‘He portrayed us as a group of brutish thugs savaging a nation, and that simply isn’t what happened,’’ O’Neill said. ‘‘I think what he should do is apologize for the remarks he made with respect to war crimes, to the people who served in Vietnam, and the relatives and friends of the people who died there. Those remarks were vicious, unfounded and untrue.’’

    Kerry has long maintained that Swift Boat Veterans for Truth is backed by Republican organizations, and he accuses the group of a smear campaign.

    On Monday, Kerry said: ‘‘I have no doubt at all that some of the people involved on the other side don’t care about the truth, think nothing about distorting it, will not hesitate to say and do whatever they think is necessary to win. But I think we are now much more prepared and savvy about those kind of things, and certainly in my own involvement, I will make certain that people don’t get away with that.’’

    In a prepared statement issued Tuesday, Kerry aide David Wade said: ‘‘What was true in 1969 and true in 2004 is still true today: Sen. Kerry served his country with honor, and the right wing was disgustingly wrong to smear a decorated combat veteran. An assault on one veteran’s service is an attack on all veterans.’’

    Kerry’s staff noted that the senator’s military records were posted on the Kerry campaign Web site in 2004 and at

    Your Views

    Do you think Sen. John Kerry has done enough to release all of his military records?

    "IMPO I think he is a liar and a traitor"

    Write: Your Views, The Patriot Ledger, 400 Crown Colony Drive, Quincy, MA 02169
    Fax: 617-786-7393
    Call: 781-340-3156
    E-mail: [email protected]
    Please include your address and telephone number
  2. SOT

    SOT Thread Killa

    Kerry is just a girly man douche bag...nothing to see.
  3. kwflatbed

    kwflatbed MassCops Angel Staff Member

    Any Bets Kerry Will Not Produce All Of The Records LOL

    Kerry offers to take Pickens up on $1 million Swift Boat challenge

    BOSTON (AP) - Senator John Kerry wants to personally accept Texas oilman T. Boone Pickens' offer of $1 million to anyone who can disprove even a single charge of the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth.
    Kerry's 2004 presidential campaign was torpedoed by critics of his Vietnam War record. The Massachusetts Democrat says he'll donate any proceeds to the Paralyzed Veterans of America.
    Pickens -- who provided the $3 million bankroll for the group -- issued his challenge earlier this month in Washington.
    He responded to Kerry's challenge by saying he won't consider giving Kerry the reward unless he surrenders his combat films, additional military records and wartime journal.
    Swift Boat Veterans challenged the circumstances for Kerry's military awards, accused him of doctoring reports and argued he never traveled into Cambodia as claimed.
    Ever since, Kerry has worked to lay the criticisms to rest.
  4. SOT

    SOT Thread Killa

    Face it Kerry was NEVER in Cambodia...after that the rest is just fluff.
  5. kwflatbed

    kwflatbed MassCops Angel Staff Member

    Swift Boat issue becomes crucial to Kerry anew

    By Sasha Issenberg

    Globe Staff / November 21, 2007
    WASHINGTON - Senator John F. Kerry, in aggressively pursuing a forum in which to disprove allegations about his Vietnam military service, is drawing new attention to an issue that he was slow to address during his 2004 presidential campaign but that he now contends is vital to his political future.
    Questions about his military service reemerged on Nov. 6 when T. Boone Pickens, a Texas financier who helped to fund the original Swift Boat Veterans for Truth campaign against Kerry during the 2004 presidential election, offered $1 million to anyone who could prove that any of the group's assertions were wrong.
    Kerry accepted the challenge last week. Since then, what was shaping up as a gentlemen's duel has devolved into a testy back-and-forth that Pickens described on Monday as "like playing poker," with a series of new demands and countercharges. Kerry yesterday accused Pickens of "parsing and backtracking" on his initial offer and said he is "prepared to prove the lie and marshal all the evidence."
    For Kerry, the public showdown with Pickens represents not only a belated engagement with old antagonists, but also an early strike against a Democratic primary opponent who signaled Monday that he welcomes the scrutiny of Kerry's military record initiated by the Swift Boat ad campaign in 2004.
    "It goes to his credibility," said Ed O'Reilly, a Gloucester lawyer mounting a challenge to Kerry in the Democratic primary. "It needs to be cleared up."
    In the summer of 2004, the independent group aired a series of television ads asserting that Kerry - who had made his decorated Navy service a key part of his appeal in the primary and general-election campaigns - had "not been honest about what happened in Vietnam." Kerry, the ads alleged, had lied to earn combat medals and had unfairly attacked fellow troops as part of his antiwar activism upon his return from Vietnam.
    While Kerry refrained from immediately responding to the attacks - damaging his campaign, in the view of many analysts - he became more aggressive after the election about making his case. In 2005, pressed by news organizations including the Globe, Kerry authorized the Navy to release his complete military and medical records. The records appeared to contain nothing to dispute Kerry's accounts of his service.
    Yet Kerry continued to pursue the subject even after announcing in January that he would not run for president. Since then, according to an aide, Kerry has assembled a portfolio of other Vietnam-era documents that he expects to become useful during a Senate campaign.
    "If you're running for reelection in Massachusetts, it's important to be able to defend yourself," said the aide, David Wade. "If there's a lesson from the last few years, it's that these same people will resurface."
    Nonetheless, both of the Republicans challenging Kerry next year said yesterday that Kerry's war record is irrelevant to their campaigns.
    "I hope this is never addressed. John Kerry has a congressional record that we need to focus on completely," said Kevin Scott, a former selectman in Wakefield. "If I am the nominee, I would steer this completely away from the Swift Boat issue."
    "I do not plan on attacking Kerry's military service or anyone else's who took the oath to defend our country and who was honorably discharged," Jeff Beatty, a national-security consultant and Harwich resident, said in a statement.
    Most people in national politics also thought the matter was unlikely to reemerge. On the presidential campaign trail, the term "Swift Boat" has come to be shorthand for a vicious attack. Former president Bill Clinton invoked "that scandalous Swift Boat ad" when cautioning Democrats against the type of attacks his wife has faced recently. Last month, Illinois Senator Barack Obama warned, "When people start to Swift Boat you, you have to respond forcefully, immediately, and truthfully."
    But the original dispute lives on for Kerry. After Pickens announced his $1 million offer at a Washington banquet, Kerry declared last week that he wanted to meet in a "mutually agreed upon public forum" to present evidence disproving the Swift Boat group's assertions. Pickens responded by demanding that Kerry release his tapes and videos taken while in the war zone, and his "journal," believed to be a collection of letters Kerry wrote home during the war. Pickens said the new material was necessary to assess the accuracy of the original ads.
    Pickens further suggested that Kerry forfeit $1 million of his own money to a charity of Pickens's choice should he be unable to disprove any of the Swift Boat allegations.
    Kerry, traveling in South Africa, yesterday accused Pickens in a letter of "parsing and backtracking" on his initial offer. "I am prepared to prove the lie and marshal all the evidence, the question is whether you are prepared to fulfill your obligation," Kerry wrote.
    The Swift Boat issue is not the only front where Kerry appears to be taking on unfinished business from 2004. He has been speaking more openly about his faith, beginning with a high-profile speech last fall at Pepperdine University. At a luncheon earlier this month hosted by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life, Kerry said he regretted not speaking more about the subject in 2004, calling the political uses of religion against him a "wedge process played out in a very open and public and difficult way." And Kerry has also spoken often about the Swift Boat group's attacks - which he considers a major factor in his presidential defeat.
    "The fact that Pickens made this public challenge was the fulcrum," Wade said. "Everything is out there, but there was the sense that if T. Boone Pickens makes a public pronouncement, we ought to get the money and give it to some veterans."
    Kerry, who has said he would contribute his prize to the Paralyzed Veterans of America, wrote yesterday that "the only thing remaining now is to set the date for our meeting," appearing to ensure that the showdown will occur.
    But a Pickens spokesman said yesterday Kerry would have to hand over the wartime materials before proceeding further. "We are certainly open to a meeting after we have reviewed those two items," said Jay Rosser.
    One prominent Swift Boat advocate, Jerome Corsi, author of "Unfit for Command," a book on which many of the ads' assertions were based, said he thought the matter wasn't appropriate for state-level politics.
    "I'm not interested in entertaining any debates in the Massachusetts Senate race," said Corsi, "unless Kerry pursues this issue with Mr. Pickens and compels me to defend 'Unfit for Command,' which I will do."
    As it stands, the man most welcoming of the return to the conflicts of 2004 is O'Reilly, who is attacking Kerry as not opposing the Iraq war strongly enough and says that the issues raised by the Swift Boat ads reflect on Kerry's character.
    "I don't want to dwell too much on the past, but he keeps going back 40 years and bringing it up, bringing it up," said O'Reilly. "He keeps talking about it."

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