Patterico's Pontifications

8/27/2007

Beldar makes John Kerry an Offer too good to refuse

Filed under: 2004 Election,General,Law,Politics — DRJ @ 10:10 am

[Guest post by DRJ]

From yesterday’s BeldarBlog:

“Sen. Kerry’s home state of Massachusetts has a very unusual, extremely generous and pro-plaintiff three-year limitations period for defamation claims. Massachusetts’ three-year statute of limitations for defamation claims made it the very last feasible venue in which Sen. Kerry conceivably could file suit and gain his public vindication, if the SwiftVets’ allegations about him were false. Those claims were certainly, indeed deliberately, injurious to his reputation; his damages arguably include the loss of the 2004 presidential election, however that might be valued in dollars and cents; and if John Kerry could hope to find a home-town advantage anywhere, surely it would be there. But now he’s let the incredibly generous Massachusetts statute of limitations run out, too.

Beldar’s offer? It’s generous:

Kerry can sue Beldar in Houston for defamation. Beldar will waive any statute of limitations defense, service of process and even pay the filing fees. If Kerry wants to proceed pro se, Beldar agrees to Kerry’s application for admission pro hac vice and will pay the fees to reinstate Kerry’s Massachusetts law license. Alternatively, Beldar will appear pro se even if Kerry doesn’t.

Beldar’s one stipulation:

“No confidentiality orders, and no motions to quash. Everything that’s uncovered in pretrial discovery has to become part of the public record without delay. We’ll put it all on the internet via a neutral host (say, the WaPo). We’ll do the pretrial depos on video, too, and jointly move the court to permit TV coverage of the trial, so that the public (and the jury, eventually) can see who sweats under oath under the bright lights.”

I’d pay good money to watch this but I think my money is safe.

235 Responses to “Beldar makes John Kerry an Offer too good to refuse”

  1. At last, John Kerry can fight back against the “swiftboaters”! He’ll be a real gutless skunk if he doesn’t do it, too, because the swiftboaters have been racking up victim after victim. They got Cindy Sheehan – albeit, that saved the Democrats the trouble of doing it themselves once she wandered off the reservation.

    Finally, he has a chance to be a real hero … like Lillian Hellman or something. Or that guy who killed Trotsky.

    I wouldn’t count on Kerry going pro se, however. If he could pay somebody to show up in the Senate for him he’d do it.

    Glen Wishard (b1987d)

  2. Hey, JFKerry what about releasing those military records like you promised?

    SicSemperTyrannus (4f2403)

  3. Kerry won’t do it because it will open his world up to scrutiny….and the MSM won’t do anything because of the same reason….and it is a total shame that the MSM doesn’t want to save their own monopoly while they still can…

    And, I love that…

    reff (bff229)

  4. Watch Kerry run like the real coward he is. He’s got no unarmed teenager to shoot in the back to vindicate himself here.

    PCD (2566fe)

  5. Kerry signed the release, form 180, in 2005.
    Can we talk about the war we’re fighting now?

    AF (e7839e)

  6. This is only speculation but I would bet that had he run for prez this time, those fbi files from the clinton days may have shed a little light on what is in the records.
    But again only speculation. He isn’t running.

    voiceofreason (957b0a)

  7. AF, given how often you have thread hijacked here, your comment is more than a bit hilarious.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  8. Can we talk about the war we’re fighting now?

    Would that be the war that John Kerry voted for, repeatedly drawing upon on his dubious Vietnam experience?

    Perfect Sense (b6ec8c)

  9. “Watch Kerry run like the real coward he is. He’s got no unarmed teenager to shoot in the back to vindicate himself here.”

    -PCD

    Fuck off. At least he was there.

    Curse his politics if you must – hell, I’ll probably join you – but give the man his due: he served his country in a real war (not some bullshit “I-got-promoted-to-Major-for-liberating-a-Kuwaiti-PortaPotty” police action), in a real combat role (not the Texas Air National Guard), and received real decorations from real officers for doing so.

    Maybe it pisses you off that he spoke his mind when he got back to the States (or that he threw his real decorations over the White House fence), but I daresay his right to do so was well-earned.

    Leviticus (b987b0)

  10. PCD’s comment about unarmed teenagers are out of bounds. But, Leviticus, if he only spoke his mind perhaps you would have a point. But Kerry fronted for fraudulent slanders of US troops in his anti-war activities.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  11. Kerry is a putz who ran a lousy campaign, but the record shows he fought bravely in a war 40 years ago. Yet at this point you’d rather keep trying to smear him than discuss the present, which is a war your big daddy has fucked up royally. Your points about Kerry have been refuted dozens of times, but it’s still safer for you to go to that than Iraq.
    This isn’t about policy to you, it’s about “us” (and who that is changes daily) and “them” which seems to mean anyone who disagrees with you about anything.
    This isn’t logic this is ideology. And you think everyone’s as knee-jerk and ideological as you are.

    When someone here has anything substantive to say about policy, even something worth arguing against, I’ll chip in again.
    I just dropped by to remind you of what you’re trying to forget.

    AF (e7839e)

  12. No, AF, the record does not show that. The points about Kerry have not been refuted at all, that’s why Beldar is so amused by Kerry letting the statute of limitations run on a defamation suit. But then, you don’t bother to even show that you know what the “points” are.

    You didn’t remind us of much except that you don’t know what you are talking about.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  13. AF – Career Vietnam Veteran John Kerry’s records haven’t been released to anybody but his butt buddy David Brinkley, if him, so check you facts.

    The Swift Boat claims have not been debunked in spite of the many times that dishonest hustler Eric Boehlert claims they have. Feeling that have been, does not make it so, even recognizing the importance of feelings to liberals.

    Go Beldar!

    daleyrocks (906622)

  14. …but the record shows he fought bravely in a war 40 years ago.

    Actually, the recored shows that most of the men who served with him don’t believe this. Among other acts, they don’t think it was brave for Kerry to bug out 36 weeks early.

    Your points about Kerry have been refuted dozens of times…

    Actually, the Swiftboat charges have not been refuted. Even Kerry now admits that he was not in Cambodia as he frequently claimed – an event that he claimed was “seared, seared in his memory.” Kerry cannot provide proper paperwork of how he received his first Purple Heart, where even if he was “wounded,” his wound was self-inflicted and not eligible for a Purple Heart. If these charges had been refuted, the why is Kerry running from a libel lawsuit?

    When someone here has anything substantive to say about policy…

    This thread is about challenging Kerry’s record in Vietnam, not about Iraq policy. Kerry says the Swiftboaders lied. If Kerry believes that, the potential defendants are being as accommodating as possible so Kerry can prove it in court.

    Perfect Sense (b6ec8c)

  15. received real decorations

    would those be the ones he claimed he threw over the White House wall?

    Darleen (187edc)

  16. Maybe it pisses you off that he spoke his mind when he got back to the States

    He spoke his mind?

    In case you haven’t heard, Levi, there’s a book out there called Winter Soldier. It cotains the entire testimony Kerry gave on the Senate floor in 1971. The book is long out of print…and Kerry quashed any attempt to create any new printings in 2004.

    Why did he do this, if he only spoke his mind, and told the truth?

    Paul (09c70a)

  17. which is a war your big daddy has fucked up royally

    AF, go consult with Carl Levin. He has something to tell you about Iraq.

    Paul (09c70a)

  18. Winter Soldier = mind speaking?

    The mind boggles, actually.

    Techie (c003f1)

  19. When someone here has anything substantive to say about policy

    AF, you’ve been told many times that if you think there are ‘substansive policy issues’ not covered here, go start your own blog. The you can rant like a madman about Chimpy BusHitler McHalliburton and his idiot war discuss any current event you want. No need to whine about how ‘this was a busy week and you’re not discussing any of it.’

    Paul (09c70a)

  20. Winter Soldier = mind speaking?

    The mind boggles, actually.

    Yes, it does. Even Garry Trudeau mocked Kerry in a 1971 Doonesbury strip.

    Paul (09c70a)

  21. PCD’s comment about unarmed teenagers are out of bounds.

    Actually, I recall reading part of a Kerry Account of the “day” his boat went to ground while taking fire (not by accident, put ashore intentionally), and he claims he jumped out of the boat, and shot a wounded, unarmed enemy. Considering the average age on both the NVA and VC, assuming the person to have been a teen is quite legit.

    So, actually, PCD’s comment is pretty on the mark…

    Scott Jacobs (a1de9d)

  22. Scott, his story was that it was an enemy who had just fired an RPG at this boat.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  23. Leviticus-
    Even if:
    1. Sen. John Kerry knowingly volunteered for hazardous swift-boat duty
    2. Was awarded all medals in a manner that any other soldier would have received them
    3. Honestly “spoke his mind” and told only the truth as best he knew it in the early 70’s
    4. Threw his medals, or ribbons, or whatever it was he said he did or didn’t throw over the White House fence
    5. Was treated with criminal slander and libel by the “swift boat vets”
    6. He never spoke on the floor of the Senate that Bill Clinton’s Vietnam record was not important
    and
    7. President Bush was a slacker in a no risk position;

    I think his attempt at being a proud, pro-military, Vietnam veteran in the 2004 campaign would have been laughable if it were not dishonest and deplorable. If I read a novel with such a plot twist I would have tossed it aside as being unbelievable.

    He birthed his public recognition as an anti-war activist who called his fellow soldiers barbarians and repudiated his being honored by the military by “returning” his medals. If that is who he wanted to be, so be it. If he wants to say those words were a mistake, apologize, and play the patriot he can if he wants to and let people believe him or not.

    But to stand by his earlier actions and claim to be a proud veteran at the same time really seems quite deplorable, let alone down right contradictory.

    If he is the patriot he claims he is, he owes it to the honor of the US military, the Democrat Party, those who voted for him, and the United States to prove the “Swift Boat Vets” were lying.

    A person can think Bush is a cheat and idiot if you want, that doesn’t make it reasonable to ignore the obvious when it comes to Sen. Kerry.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  24. why would anyone agree to this? their computers, emails, medical and financial records all open. that’s ridiculous.

    ak (6623fa)

  25. Kerry released his entire record. He signed a Standard Form 180. Jesus fucking christ.
    He gave Brinkley his diaries.

    And we’re now backing Sunni insurgents against Shia; which means once again that we’re backing Bin Laden’s fan-base. You won’t learn from history, so we’ll all repeat it.
    And I’m sorry, but I don’t hang on every word out of politicians’ mouths, even or especially those I voted for. I read the words of people who worry about something other than getting elected.
    This isn’t a goddamn football game.

    AF (e7839e)

  26. At the time when Kerry volunteered for Swift Boats, it was not considered a hazardous assignment. Their mission changed after Kerry was already in, and Kerry high-tailed it out of Vietnam shortly afterwards.

    Vatar (085be7)

  27. why would anyone who would get beaten like a baby seal agree to this?

    Fixed that for you, ak.

    Paul (09c70a)

  28. Kerry released his entire record. He signed a Standard Form 180.

    From the article you cited, AF:

    The records, which the Navy Personnel Command provided to the Globe, are mostly a duplication of what Kerry released during his 2004 campaign for president, including numerous commendations from commanding officers who later criticized Kerry’s Vietnam service.

    The lack of any substantive new material about Kerry’s military career in the documents raises the question of why Kerry refused for so long to waive privacy restrictions.

    Self-refutation, AF.

    Once again: don’t like what’s here? Get your own blog. Whining does not become you.

    Paul (09c70a)

  29. If you bothered to read Beldar’s post, AF, you would have seen this:

    So let’s drop the snark and call a spade a spade: The very last thing John Kerry wants is to ever give the SwiftVets the legal tools they’d need to conclusively document their claims, because truth is, of course, a complete defense to defamation claims. Kerry doesn’t deserve vindication, and he knows he could never get it in court. In court, there would be compulsory discovery of witnesses and documents, followed by a fair and disciplined adversary process, followed by a definitive determination of the truth or falsity of the SwiftVets’ charges — a determination that he damn well knows would go against him. Instead, the haze of time and the near-universal bluster of his mainstream media allies (who continue to insist that the SwiftVets’ claims were “debunked” and that Kerry was victimized) has given him a far better result than he could ever get in court.

    Paul (09c70a)

  30. If JFKerry was standing in a tub of blazing gasoline yelling “fire”, I wouldn’t believe him until he further defined what exactly he meant to convey. The man is a serial liar.

    Another Drew (8018ee)

  31. “I think his attempt at being a proud, pro-military, Vietnam veteran in the 2004 campaign would have been laughable if it were not dishonest and deplorable.”

    -MD in Philly

    I couldn’t agree more. It was political posturing of the most despicable and frankly insulting sort, and I said more or less as much in my original post… but political posturing in 2004 (or 1971, for that matter) doesn’t change the fact that Kerry did a dangerous job as a soldier in the US military, and PCD has no right to slight his service.

    Leviticus (c38564)

  32. Two very pertinent facts about the Form 180 Jo-Ke signed… first it restricted the that the documents go to only the Globe and the LATimes and no one else. Secondly, we only have the word of both those papers that the form was “unrestricted” … since a Form 180 does provide the signer with the option of picking and choosing which documents to release.

    Neither paper will share any of the documents they reported on, nor will they provide a photocopy of the signed Form 180.

    Color me less than persuaded that all the docs have been released and vetted.

    Darleen (187edc)

  33. Yes, it does. Even Garry Trudeau mocked Kerry in a 1971 Doonesbury strip.

    Trudeau mocked Kerry’s egotism and self-aggrandizement in these strips. In one, after rallying a crowd with his speech, “Kerry” thinks to himself, “You’re really clicking tonight, you gorgeous preppie.”

    Those strips are easy to find. Harder to find are the ones in which Trudeau smeared George H.W. Bush by suggesting that his WWII medals were earned not because he was particularly heroic, but because he was a lousy pilot. I remember one panel in which the elder Bush — whom Trudeau “drew” as invisible, only visually represented by lines around his mouth indicating he is speaking, is about to crash his jet. Trudeau has him saying “Uh-oh! Deep doo-doo!”

    Those strips exist. I haven’t been able to find them in paperback Doonesbury collections from years past, but believe me, they were published, and they are out there somewhere.

    By the way, if you notice that Trudeau’s become a better illustrator since his days at Yale, that’s because he no longer does his own artwork — he’s been contracting it out for years. After Trudeau went after junk bond king Michael Milken, Milken did some digging and found that out.

    L.N. Smithee (f9d1e6)

  34. Paul cited Beldar thusly:

    Instead, the haze of time and the near-universal bluster of his mainstream media allies (who continue to insist that the SwiftVets’ claims were “debunked” and that Kerry was victimized) has given him a far better result than he could ever get in court.

    Stamn draight. It’s gotten to the point the lies of the MSM are mutating into new strains — remember how Karl Rove was blamed for the SwiftVets’ campaign even though he had nothing to do with it whatsoever?

    L.N. Smithee (7d35d5)

  35. AF, does it not embarrass you that your own link refutes your claims?

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  36. Was Kerry ever quoted as saying he would pursue a defamation suit?

    He’d recover almost zero cash and change few minds.

    Beldar is re-tooling the “hippies-lost-‘Nam” writ, serving up Kerry as a hambone four or five times a year.

    steve (f0c0b9)

  37. It amazes me that you all are still after Kerry even though he lost years ago. And your man skipped out on the war altogether. How ridiculous.

    Psyberian (9a155b)

  38. Consult the final ~130 comments from Patterico’s April thread on SBVT w/ Beldar’s defense.

    Actual issue engagement:

    http://patterico.com/2007/04/05/abc-news-smears-swift-boat-veterans-for-truth-with-slanderous-news-article/

    steve (f0c0b9)

  39. Leviticus in a fit of delusional whining says: “he served his country in a real war (not some bullshit “I-got-promoted-to-Major-for-liberating-a-Kuwaiti-PortaPotty” police action), in a real combat role (not the Texas Air National Guard), and received real decorations from real officers for doing so“…

    I’m sure you have some hours in an …F-102, right?

    Sniveling, ignorant libtard parasite or I can shorten it to, DemORat

    juandos (4cdb62)

  40. “The lack of any substantive new material about Kerry’s military career in the documents raises the question of why Kerry refused for so long to waive privacy restrictions.”
    There was nothing new or important in the file, but Kerry stood proud and made things worse. The question the article asks is why? The answer is that Kerry’s a self-important putz, but you seem always to forget that we agree on that.

    Kerry gave full access to the AP, The Globe, and the LA Times, but not to the NY Sun. That, again, was silly, but also again, that’s what this is about.

    “AF, does it not embarrass you that your own link refutes your claims?”
    How this refutes anything I said is beyond my comprehension.
    You’ve embarassed yourself enough for one day. Quit while you’re behind; or continue to indulge your fantasies that the MSM, which slammed Clinton left and right over a blowjob when the majority of people in this country didn’t give a shit, and which only recently removed its collective tongue from George Bush’s ass, is really out to protect John Kerry. The SBVT did their job and did it well, Kerry fought back like a pussy, and still you howl.
    And Of course John O’neill is a confirmed liar:

    The co-author of the book “Unfit for Command,” former swift boat commander John O’Neill said Kerry made up a story about being in Cambodia beyond the legal borders of the Vietnam War in 1968.
    O’Neill said no one could cross the border by river and he claimed in an audio tape that his publicist played to CNN that he, himself, had never been to Cambodia either. But in 1971, O’Neill said precisely the opposite to then President Richard Nixon.
    O’NEILL: I was in Cambodia, sir. I worked along the border on the water.
    NIXON: In a swift boat?
    O’NEILL: Yes, sir.

    And check out the transcript of the Cavett show if you can find it.

    AF (e7839e)

  41. fun facts

    The group [SBVT] decided to hire a private investigator to investigate Mr. Brinkley’s account of the war – to find “some neutral way of actually questioning people involved in these incidents,’’ Mr. O’Neill said.
    But the investigator’s questions did not seem neutral to some.
    Patrick Runyon, who served on a mission with Mr. Kerry, said he initially thought the caller was from a pro-Kerry group, and happily gave a statement about the night Mr. Kerry won his first Purple Heart. The investigator said he would send it to him by e-mail for his signature. Mr. Runyon said the edited version was stripped of all references to enemy combat, making it look like just another night in the Mekong Delta.
    “It made it sound like I didn’t believe we got any returned fire,” he said. “He made it sound like it was a normal operation. It was the scariest night of my life….”

    The group also offers the account of William L. Schachte Jr., a retired rear admiral who says in the book that he had been on the small skimmer on which Mr. Kerry was injured that night in December 1968. He contends that Mr. Kerry wounded himself while firing a grenade.
    But the two other men who acknowledged that they had been with Mr. Kerry, Bill Zaladonis and Mr. Runyon, say they cannot recall a third crew member. “Me and Bill aren’t the smartest, but we can count to three,” Mr. Runyon said in an interview. And even Dr. Letson said he had not recalled Mr. Schachte until he had a conversation with another veteran earlier this year and received a subsequent phone call from Mr. Schachte himself.
    Mr. Schachte did not return a telephone call, and a spokesman for the group said he would not comment….

    The group says Mr. Kerry himself wrote the reports that led to the medal. But Mr. Elliott and Mr. Lonsdale, who handled reports going up the line for recognition, have previously said that a medal would be awarded only if there was corroboration from others and that they had thoroughly corroborated the accounts.
    “Witness reports were reviewed; battle reports were reviewed,” Mr. Lonsdale said at the 1996 news conference, adding, “It was a very complete and carefully orchestrated procedure.” In his statements Mr. Elliott described the action that day as “intense” and “unusual…”

    According to a citation for Mr. Kerry’s Bronze Star, a group of Swift boats was leaving the Bay Hap river when several mines detonated, disabling one boat and knocking a soldier named Jim Rassmann overboard. In a hail of enemy fire, Mr. Kerry turned the boat around to pull Mr. Rassmann from the water.
    Mr. Rassmann, who says he is a Republican, reappeared during the Iowa caucuses this year to tell his story and support Mr. Kerry, and is widely credited with helping to revive Mr. Kerry’s campaign.
    But the group says that there was no enemy fire, and that while Mr. Kerry did rescue Mr. Rassmann, the action was what anyone would have expected of a sailor, and hardly heroic. Asked why Mr. Rassmann recalled that he was dodging enemy bullets, a member of the group, Jack Chenoweth, said, “He’s lying.”
    “If that’s what we have to say,” Mr. Chenoweth added, “that’s how it was.”
    A damage report to Mr. Thurlow’s boat shows that it received three bullet holes, suggesting enemy fire, and later intelligence reports indicate that one Vietcong was killed in action and five others wounded, reaffirming the presence of an enemy. Mr. Thurlow said the boat was hit the day before. He also received a Bronze Star for the day, a fact left out of “Unfit for Command.”

    The Thorow in question is this this man

    Newly obtained military records of one of Sen. John F. Kerry’s most vocal critics, who has accused the Democratic presidential candidate of lying about his wartime record to win medals, contradict his own version of events.

    And here’s some fun on Vietnam

    No interest in truth here.
    You can lead trash to knowledge…

    AF (e7839e)

  42. AF – Continues the proud lefty tradition of supporting the troops and cheering massacres.

    Take a bow kiddo!

    daleyrocks (906622)

  43. but I daresay his right to do so was well-earned.
    -Leviticus

    Had Jane Fonda been in the military would her actions have been more acceptable? Would she have “earned” the right to do what she did?

    The way I see it, Kerry is worse than Fonda because he took the oath. Was Benedict Arnold’s “right to do so” also “well earned”?

    j curtis (ecc9cc)

  44. How this refutes anything I said is beyond my comprehension.

    What a surprise, AF.

    Paul (09c70a)

  45. AF (#41 & previous): No one has ever suggested that Sen. Kerry’s defenders have been left standing speechless. No one has ever suggested that they can’t find links to online sources that contain language that supports their positions.

    Intense and intelligent debates over the credibility of, for example, Jim Rassmann’s story took place on websites left, right, and center — but rarely, indeed almost never, in the mainstream media. You can find on my blog and in its comments from 2004, for example, links to and quotes from contemporaneous documents from which one side will argue that the three bullet holes you reference can be conclusively inferred to have come from documented combat on a previous day, and equally impassioned arguments as to why that inference isn’t justified.

    More often, however — as, with due respect, you have done here — one side or the other will simply link, or cut and paste, some one-sided argument and then step back and shout, “Aha! Now I’ve won the debate! De-bunked!” Or: “Aha! Now I’ve won the debate! He’s lying scum!” Both sides have done this.

    In the courtroom, in a trial, we have rules — a very highly refined set of processes and procedures — which have been evolved over centuries to test the truthfulness of witnesses and their propositions. Both sides have to play by those rules; both sides have thorough opportunities under those rules to present their respective claims and arguments and positions as persuasively as they’re able.

    And then at the end of that process, representatives from the community — jurors, functioning together as a jury — literally give us a verdict. That last step is completely missing from the blogosphere. It won’t happen in this post, it won’t happen on my blog, it won’t happen on the pages of mediamatters.com or the Washington Post.

    That is why I’ve invited Sen. Kerry, in as seductive and attractive a way as I can imagine, to follow up on the threats made by his campaign lawyers to sue the TV stations who broadcast the SwiftVets’ commercials for defamation — but by suing me instead, since I also “published” and “republished” those ads and, indeed, restated most of their accusations in my own voice on my blog. I am eager to seek the closure of a verdict. I am eager to give Sen. Kerry and his best advocates their best shot at proving that the SwiftVets’ claims about him are malicious lies. I am eager to take my best shot at proving the opposite.

    And most of all, I am eager to have the tools to develop my case that the civil justice system offers, but that the blogosophere (and mainstream media) do not — chief among them, the power to compel the production of documents and sworn testimony, and the power to examine and cross-examine witnesses under oath.

    I would, in other words, relish the chance to shift the debate into a forum in which the truth will come out.

    My inference from the fact that Sen. Kerry has never made good on this threats to sue, however, is that he is desperate to ensure that the truth never comes out. He is desperate to deny me (or, more realistically, the SwiftVets and their supporters generally) the tools of the civil justice system that our society has evolved as its most effective and civilized means for establishing objective truth.

    Sadly, it will never happen. I can’t compel him to sue me; neither could the SwiftVets compel him to sue them.

    But I can and will continue to mock him for his hollow threats and his stonewalling. There actually were occasions on which he faced danger in combat as a Swift Boat commander. But he’s never shown anything but abject cowardice when it comes to facing the compulsive processes of the civil justice system. He’s apparently much more afraid of being cross-examined under oath than being shot at from a river-bank.

    Beldar (1b82e4)

  46. #40 AF: And Of course John O’neill is a confirmed liar.

    Actually CNN, with its multiple layers of editors, could not figure out, or deliberately mislead the public, that O’Neill was talking about two separate rivers. John Kerry’s stories were on the Mekong River that flows from Cambodia into Vietnam. There was a distinct boundary that was well marked and well guarded to prevent any passage.

    O’Neill was on a separate river in the far south of Vietnam that divided Cambodia from Vietnam. The Cambodian – Vietnamese border was the middle of a very small river so maneuvering Swiftboats did “cross” into Cambodia. But that is far different than Kerry’s “Xmas in Cambodia” story and Kerry’s “magic hat from a CIA agent in Cambodia” story. Stories that John Kerry doesn’t bring up any more.

    If O’Neil is lying, Kerry can use the courts to prove it, but he turned tail and ran.

    Perfect Sense (b6ec8c)

  47. Leviticus-

    I’m glad we can agree on that point.

    Where I go from there is if his character and commitment to truthfulness is such to pull that stunt, I have no reason to trust his account on anything, unless I know it to be true from other sources.

    In making my main point, I momentarily conceded many things that I don’t think are true (Even if). For example, in post #26 Vatar points out that there are claims that “At the time when Kerry volunteered for Swift Boats, it was not considered a hazardous assignment. Their mission changed after Kerry was already in, and Kerry high-tailed it out of Vietnam shortly afterwards.”

    My bottom line is I have ample evidence out of Sen. Kerry’s own mouth that he is not to be trusted or admired. If he claims others have lied about him, let him prove it.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  48. “But I can and will continue to mock him for his hollow threats and his stonewalling.”

    Kerry has a habit of not “standing up and fighting like a man,” as you might put, it when it comes to politics. This is well documented. But it also well documented that he did stand up, and that he fought and fought bravely in war. That leaves the question of why he was attacked, and what relation that has to his work with Vietnam Veterans against the War, and participation in Winter Soldier investigation. If you want to have a discussion of those things that would be fine by me, but be aware that I am not running for office and that I do not worry about the the votes of angry veterans who need to imagine their work and their friends lives were not wasted in a bloody and criminal military fiasco.

    I’m sorry if John Kerry won’t give you the honor of a dual in the sun. This isn’t England and libel is difficult to show, but on the facts of this service in Vietnam the SWVT case is beyond thin, and the lies and misrepresentations of the members of that group are as well documented as their charges are not. Kerry gave his complete record to The AP the LA Times and the Globe, but here you are complaining that he didn’t send you a copy, saying that fact alone means that he has something to hide. You flatter yourself (and your readers), but the rest of the world has moved on. We’re in another war now, even worse. I think its more pressing that we discuss that.

    AF (e7839e)

  49. “At the time when Kerry volunteered for Swift Boats, it was not considered a hazardous assignment.”

    – Vatar

    To quote what will soon be recognized as the pinnacle of modern cinema*, “What absolute ‘orseshit”.

    Kerry first command (which he requested) was from December of 1968 to January of 1969. The US lost more than 16,000 soldiers in 1968, and more than 11,000 in 1969. Kerry spent four months in combat at the height of the war.

    If Vatar is going to make a claim like that, he’d better have something very specific to back it up.

    *Hot Fuzz, starring Simon Pegg and Nick Frost

    “Had Jane Fonda been in the military would her actions have been more acceptable? Would she have “earned” the right to do what she did?”

    – j curtis

    If by “what she did” you mean “exercise free speech”, than yes, I would say she had that right. You mistakenly assume that you’re horrifying me by comparing John Kerry to *gasp*… JANE FONDA! Nobody cares.

    “I’m sure you have some hours in an …F-102, right? Sniveling, ignorant libtard parasite or I can shorten it to, DemORat…”

    – juandos

    You’re right, juandos: I don’t have flight experience in an F-102… but I did sit in one of those little toy planes outside the grocery store, once! Cost me 50 cents, worth every penny.

    To be fair, I’ve also never done a line of coke off a hooker’s ass… Strike two on an authentic recreation of the Bush Vietnam Experience!

    For your sake, I’ll assume that you’re an attention-starved pundit-wannabe doing his best to plug his pathetic blog, and leave you with the following piece of advice: just because the paint chips are shiny doesn’t mean you should put them in your mouth.

    Leviticus (b987b0)

  50. AF, Kerry said that he would release all of his records, but in reality he didn’t – he allowed only hand-selected individuals in the friendly press to see them. What you want to obscure is that it is Kerry that has been shown to be a liar, not O’Neill Corsini et al.

    Leviticus, all you seem to have is slanders. How amusing. But what you don’t have is a command of facts. When Kerry volunteered for Swiftboats, they were patrolling off the coast of Vietnam which was indeed a quiet assignment. Your reference to the casualties of all troops is irrelevant. Only later were the boats redeployed to riverine patrol.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  51. Leviticus:

    I suppose we should call you a Kerrybot, much like the accolytes of Gore are called Gorebots.

    If you are going to question others please get your facts straight.

    The swifboats in Vietnam were originally used a messenger boats moving cargo and people around. The task changed after Kerry moved to the swifboats.

    davod (5bdbd3)

  52. Leviticus spat: If by “what [Jane Fonda] did” you mean “exercise free speech”, than yes, I would say she had that right.

    I don’t think j curtis was going for “exercis[ing] free speech.” I think he meant “giving aid and comfort to the enemy.”

    Or don’t you think gleefully climbing aboard a Viet Cong anti-aircraft gun used to shoot down American planes while parroting North Vietnamese denials of systematic torture qualifies?

    L.N. Smithee (a06d08)

  53. Oddly, L.N.Smithee, many believe that parroting the fraudulent claims of atrocities by fake “veterans” in front of Congress qualifies too.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  54. AF drooled: We’re in another war now, even worse.

    Worse than Vietnam? Pop quiz, hotshot: which battle has had fewer American troop deaths? The Iraq War, which has — as leftists are wont to suggest — “gone on longer than World War II”, or the Vietnam War?

    I think its more pressing that we discuss that.

    What do you mean “we,” paleface? This thread’s about Kerry. You want to drone on about Iraq, get your own blog. Lemme give you a head start.

    L.N. Smithee (a06d08)

  55. “Had Jane Fonda been in the military would her actions have been more acceptable? Would she have “earned” the right to do what she did?”

    – j curtis

    If by “what she did” you mean “exercise free speech”, than yes, I would say she had that right. You mistakenly assume that you’re horrifying me by comparing John Kerry to *gasp*… JANE FONDA! Nobody cares.

    Fonda did more than speak and so did Kerry. They both met with the enemy for the purpose of subverting the US war effort.

    I know that prior to the 1960s, back when we used to win wars, we would recognize treason and deal with it harshly. Can you think of any instance of punishable war related treason that has ever been committed against the US? Would it have been inappropriate to execute Benedict Arnold?

    j curtis (ecc9cc)

  56. I missed that AF called the Iraq War worse than the Vietnam War. That is hilarious.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  57. So you think a cold war era military debacle in a tiny former French colony in a corner of Southeast Asia carries more weight than another failed war in the heart of the Middle East[!] 17 years after the Berlin wall came down? Do you live entirely in slumberland?

    The stakes are higher this time around; there’s no need to argue that point. No one does. And Nixon may have been corrupt but he wasn’t this bad. Just ask Kevin Phillips. And of course more Iraqis have been killed than Vietnamese (in the same time frame) The numbers are approaching 2 to 1 by now.
    You rationalize every mistake. Your ego is more important to you than the defense of the country. You deserve your president; but the rest of us deserve more.
    Should I run down the record of your hero’s disasters again?

    AF (e7839e)

  58. Oh, AF, please do. We are completely unfamiliar with the talking points of the barking moonbats. A refresher course is always in order.

    JD (e2fc98)

  59. AF, that is pretty hilarious. The fraudulent casualty claims are a good touch too.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  60. Leviticus-

    Posts 50 and 51 refer to what Vatar was talking about. If you want to prove Vatar wrong, you can demonstrate to us that at the time Sen. Kerry volunteered for swiftboat duty they were already being used for dangerous duty or document that he knew the plans for dangerous duty. No other arguments, factual or not, are pertinent.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  61. Doing a little research (which you don’t do much of) the numbers for vietnamese on both sides from 1965-75 by some estimates are about 1 million. Other estimates are 5 million in total, military and civilian over the 20 year course of the war (French and American periods) I thought the number during the american period was 500,000 but those are old numbes. The US of course lost 58,000
    The numbers for iraq I won’t go into because whatever I say you’d ignore. But no one debates anymore the numbers for children killed by the sanctions, and that’s about a quarter of a million right there. You look up the rest.

    It’s like arguing with a crew of 5 year olds, and their theory that if they stick together they’re invincible:
    [Hands over ears] “Nya Nya Nya… can’t hear you!”
    oy vey…
    And Beldar is their favorite teacher.

    AF (e7839e)

  62. MD:
    Kerry did a dangerous job and he did it well.
    SBVT said otherwise, and they’ve been shown to be liars about their own records.
    What does that imply?

    AF (e7839e)

  63. AF – “But no one debates anymore the numbers for children killed by the sanctions”

    Are you suggesting the oil for food program was a clean program. No one debates this anymore or that Saddam deliberately starved his people by diverting funds from where they needed to go. Why would you attempt to blame this on the U.S. rather than on his corrupt stewardship of his country is beyond me. No one except blame America firsters debates this anymore as I’ve already pointed out.

    No points for even trying this dodge.

    daleyrocks (906622)

  64. SBVT said otherwise, and they’ve been shown to be liars about their own records.

    So then: where was Kerry on Christmas Eve, 1968, and who’s orders was he following?

    Unix-Jedi (651a1b)

  65. Actually, AF, a lot of people debate the numbers of children killed by sanctions, because those were even more ridiculous statistical manipulations than the silly Lancet papers. However, since most of the Iraq war protestors have deliberately forgotten about that argument, because it undermines the claim that sanctions were working against Saddam, it does not come up much.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  66. Next thing you know, AF will clain that the U.S. is responsible for Saddam’s rape and torture rooms, mass graves, gassing of the Kurds, invasion of Kuwait, and assorted other crimes.

    daleyrocks (906622)

  67. Ah, daleyrocks, we’ll get a link to a picture of Donald Rumsfeld any second now.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  68. Leviticus,

    I don’t have to slander Kerry’s service. Kerry did that all by his lonesome. He’s the one who “spit” on his medals. He’s the one who cozied up to the enemy while still under obligation to the Navy. Kerry is the one who had to go running to Jimmy Carter to conviene a board to get him a discharge, not the usual proceedure for someone to separate from the services.

    AF, you are nothing, but you have disgraced yourself mightily here.

    PCD (1048b5)

  69. “I suppose we should call you a Kerrybot, much like the accolytes of Gore are called Gorebots.”

    -davod

    I would call that comment stupid, given my past remarks regarding Kerry, but “stupid” wouldn’t do it any real justice.

    “The swifboats in Vietnam were originally used a messenger boats moving cargo and people around. The task changed after Kerry moved to the swifboats.”

    -davod

    You are confusing the purpose of “Swift Boats” with the purpose of “water taxis”. Sewart Seacraft, which originally built water taxis for oil rigs, was chosen to manufacture Swiftboats for the US Navy – with the small but important addition of three .50 caliber machine guns and an 81 millimeter mortar launcher. I don’t know what kind of heat taxi drivers pack in your neck of the woods, but that seems a bit much by any standard.

    These were the first “Swift Boats”, delivered in 1965. By December 1968, the Navy had already lost several Swift Boats either to river mines or to attacks from Viet Cong/NVA troops. It wasn’t just messenger duty; it was the real deal.

    For what it’s worth, Kerry’s second choice, after Swift Boat duty, was for PBR (river patrol boat) duty, which I’m sure most of you would admit was a dangerous assignment, even if you quibble about the dangers of Swift Boat duty.

    L.N. Smithee,

    Did you read the Wikipedia Article that went with that Wikipedia picture? You know, the part that said:

    “In her 2005 autobiography, she states that she was manipulated into sitting on the battery, and claims to have been immediately horrified at the implications of the pictures.”

    “gleefully”… tool.

    “If you want to prove Vatar wrong, you can demonstrate to us that at the time Sen. Kerry volunteered for swiftboat duty they were already being used for dangerous duty or document that he knew the plans for dangerous duty.”

    -MD in Philly

    I gave you a breakdown of the initial purpose of the Swift Boats. Here’s a link to a list of Swift Boat
    casualties, several of which had already occurred by December 1968.

    I don’t understand how you can claim that Kerry’s service, in and of itself, was either dishonorable of cowardly. From a position of safety (the USS Gridley), he requested transfer to a position of risk. Why is that so hard to appreciate?

    OR, put another way… Can you say the same for Bush?

    Leviticus (b987b0)

  70. Levi said:

    Did you read the Wikipedia Article that went with that Wikipedia picture? You know, the part that said:

    “In her 2005 autobiography, she states that she was manipulated into sitting on the battery, and claims to have been immediately horrified at the implications of the pictures.”

    Yeah, I’d write that too after having been pounded for 35 years for committing such a public fundamental error in judgment.

    If she was “immediately horrified at the implications of the pictures” she should have spoken up long before 2005…like, say, 1968?

    Paul (09c70a)

  71. Levi again:

    OR, put another way… Can you say the same for Bush?

    Yes, we can:

    This is a Convair F-102 Delta Dagger. It is a second-generation, supersonic fighter-interceptor. It cruises at 845 mph.

    There were some minor aerodynamic problems with the F-102. For example, at certain power settings and angles of attack – like, say, take-off — the jet compressor would stall and the aircraft would roll inverted. It is no picnic, skill-wise, to fly a modern F-16 with advanced avionics and fly-by-wire flight control systems. The workload on the F-102 was far higher. The F-16 has an accident rate of 4.14 occurrences per 100,000 flight hours. The F-102’s accident rate was more than three times that: 13.69 per 100,000 hours. 875 F-102A interceptors were built; 259 – almost 30% – were lost to accidents or enemy action while serving in Vietnam.

    George W. Bush flew hundreds of hours in the F-102.

    This is the cockpit of the F-102 Delta Dagger’s successor, the F-106 Delta Dart (I could not find an F-102 panel, but they would have been very similar)

    Now, picture yourself in this chair, at 40,000 feet, traveling at one and a half times the speed of sound. Now imagine that someone has painted the windows white – you are flying on instruments. Now imagine that not only do you have to be able to fly blind, by referencing these instruments, but that you also have to stare into that orange jack-o-lantern of a radar, and interpret a squiggle that will lead you to your target. Now imagine that in addition to not hitting the ground, or your wingman, and watching the squiggle, you also have to turn those switches on the right side panel to activate weapons systems, to overcome enemy countermeasures…without looking outside, as you hurtle through air at -40 degrees F, air so thin that should you lose pressure, you have about 4-6 seconds of consciousness before you black out and die.

    You are kidding yourself if you think this wasn’t a risk assignment, Levi.

    Paul (09c70a)

  72. Leviticus-

    I’m downright irritated at you. Not because you better me in an argument, but because you shoot yourself in the foot and leg (and are getting close to your head, so be careful).

    First, you say:
    I don’t understand how you can claim that Kerry’s service, in and of itself, was either dishonorable of cowardly. From a position of safety (the USS Gridley), he requested transfer to a position of risk. Why is that so hard to appreciate?

    I didn’t say that. I said that since I know he resorted to deplorable and misleading stunts I don’t trust anything he says, and if he claims people lied about him, let him prove it, which Beldar is “offering his assistance” to prove a point.

    Second, I said it needed to be verified that he requested a transfer from a position of safety to one of risk. You are assuming Kerry’s version of the story, yet you have agreed with me that his testimony is unreliable. All I am asking is verification of his story, and it has nothing to do with George Bush.

    Read your links before you post them when you’re making an argument, lest you get embarrassed.

    An excerpt from your link:

    Vietnam Service
    The first Swift Boat to be lost during the war was PCF-4, … to a mine in 1966. Three others were lost in rough seas, …. PCF-41 was lost in a running gun battle with Viet Cong guerrillas (southern Communist guerrillas who operated in South Vietnam) in 1966. PCF-43 was lost to a rocket attack in 1969, and PCF’s 77, 14, and 76 were lost to heavy seas. Several other Swift Boats had been lost to river mines, but had been salvaged and either repaired or used for spare parts.

    In June of 1968, PCF-19 and PCF-12 were patrolling near the DMZ (17th parallel) when they were attacked by hovering aircraft at night time…. mentions in part “…enemy held Tiger Island…possible base of operations for North Vietnamese military…” and “under constant air attack from all angles Helo…gunners ordered to fire the .50 caliber guns at any and all air contacts…”[1] There were more than enough (declassified) official reports, that mention “enemy aircraft”, to conclude that the loss of PCF-19 was due to North Vietnamese helicopters. It is important to note, however, that as of 2006, PCF-12 and PCF-19 (Lost) were still carried by the US Navy as attacked/lost from friendly fire.[1]

    My summary:
    11 swiftboats lost, “several others” damaged
    7 lost prior to 1969
    –1 to a mine in ’66
    –3 to “rough seas” (ie, not inland)
    –1 to a gun battle (the presumed threat that was so pervasive and dangerous)
    –2 to aircrat fire, ? “friendly fire”

    of the 4 in 1969 and later, 1 to a rocket attack and 3 more to heavy seas

    6/11 lost were due to “high seas”. Shucks, maybe running patrols out of combat range was more dangerous after all.

    So, you can argue whether it was riskier to get swamped by waves off of the Vietnam coast or to go down in a F-102 or eject into the gulf of Mexico.

    You can find more info at http://www.wingmenforbush.com if you choose concerning Paul’s post.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  73. In comment #57 AF wrote:

    You deserve your president; but the rest of us deserve more.

    AF, I have long understood that you believe that you deserve, and fervently long for, to live under Osama bin Laden … literally. I don’t blame you for trying but he’s only getting 72 virgins. You’ll have a lot of competition. Good luck, buddy. The sooner you and your hero make it to Islamic Paradise the better the world will be.

    nk (a6ecc6)

  74. I’ve never willingly supported bin Laden, nor anyone who was ever allied with him. That can’t be said of past administrations, republican or democrat. The same goes for Saddam Hussein, the Shah, Musharraf, Mubarak, or the Saudis (or Israel to tell the truth). Talk to the CIA about that, not me.
    And Darling Darleen, the arguments you refer to were settled years ago. “…ridiculous statistical manipulations?” You don’t know enough to judge manipulations and your record when you try ain’t very good

    Kelly is attractive and intense, with a bounty of grey-brown curls and clear, penetrating eyes. A longtime member of the Catholic Worker movement, she and others were galvanized into action in 1995, when the U.N. Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) published a study in the British medical journal Lancet estimating that as many as 576,000 children had died as a result of the sanctions. “We realized that if we are not doing anything about this, it’s unlikely that anybody else is,” she says.

    The FAO casualty estimate became a kind of rallying cry for sanctions opponents, and was forever immortalized in 1996, when “60 Minutes” asked then-U.N. ambassador Madeline Albright about the death toll of 500,000 children. She responded: “I think this is a very hard choice, but the price—we think the price is worth it.”

    Later studies would critique the methodology of the FAO report, but even a conservative analysis of the child morbidity and mortality rate in Iraq, published by public health and sanctions expert Richard Garfield, came up with a likely estimate of 350,000 dead children.

    The bulk of these casualties came before the switch to “oil-for-food,” which led to a dramatic decrease in malnutrition and a doubling of food intake. But even after the most abject humanitarian crisis was relieved, sanctions still enforced widespread social misery. “I would say sanctions made Saddam Hussein stronger, not weaker,” says Denis Halliday, a former U.N. Humanitarian Coordinator in Iraq. “They demolished any political opposition. Middle class professionals were so busy trying to make a living or keeping their kids alive, they had no interest in changing the system.”

    After 13 months overseeing the Oil-for-Food program, Halliday quit in protest, eventually calling the United Nations policy “genocide.” He was succeeded by Hans Von Sponeck, who lasted two years before he, too, quit in disgust.

    I wish any of you gave a damn about anyone other than yourselves.

    AF (e7839e)

  75. Beldar at #45:

    Sen. Kerry has never made good on this [his?] threats to sue

    Beldar, could you please provide a link showing where Kerry himself – or even someone on his behalf – actually did threaten to sue?

    Thanks.

    Itsme (df89f3)

  76. Robin Roberts #53:

    Oddly, L.N.Smithee, many believe that parroting the fraudulent claims of atrocities by fake “veterans” in front of Congress qualifies too.

    Really? As far as I know, not a single veteran who testified at the Winter Soldier Investigation has been shown to be a “fake.”

    So could you please provide that proof if you know of it?

    Thanks.

    Itsme (df89f3)

  77. Unix-Jed # 64:

    So then: where was Kerry on Christmas Eve, 1968, and who’s orders was he following?

    According to Kerry, his journal, and at least two eyewitnesses, he was patroling at or near the Cambodian border. He told the Boston Globe (among others) that he thought he crossed the border during that patrol.

    I’d guess he was patrolling on the orders of George Elliott, who mentioned the Christmas truce ambush in his fitness report.

    Itsme (df89f3)

  78. Md in Philly #72:

    Second, I said it needed to be verified that he requested a transfer from a position of safety to one of risk. You are assuming Kerry’s version of the story, yet you have agreed with me that his testimony is unreliable. All I am asking is verification of his story, and it has nothing to do with George Bush.

    Well, if you want verification that he volunteered for duty in Vietnam, which most people would consider risky in itself, it’s here:

    Vietnam Duty Request

    Kerry has acknowledged that swift boats “didn’t really have much to do with the war” at the time, and he’d be patrolling off the coast. However, I don’t think anyone disputes that he volunteered for dangerous duty as a swift boat officer.

    Second, as the other poster points out, his second request for billet was for PBR duty, which was known to be dangerous.

    So why would he volunteer for that dangerous duty if he wasn’t willing to take it?

    Itsme (df89f3)

  79. Sorry, I meant “he thought he’d be patrolling off the coast.

    Itsme (df89f3)

  80. Darleen #32:

    Two very pertinent facts about the Form 180 Jo-Ke signed… first it restricted the that the documents go to only the Globe and the LATimes and no one else. Secondly, we only have the word of both those papers that the form was “unrestricted” … since a Form 180 does provide the signer with the option of picking and choosing which documents to release.

    Actually, he signed one for release of records to the AP. And Douglas Brinkley.

    And we do have more than “the word” of the news organizations that the form was “unrestricted,” because the forms were actually posted on the Internet shortly after Kerry signed them.

    http://powerlineblog.com/archives/Kerry1.jpg

    http://powerlineblog.com/archives/Kerry2.jpg

    http://powerlineblog.com/archives/Kerry3.jpg

    Itsme (df89f3)

  81. Well, if you want verification that he volunteered for duty in Vietnam, which most people would consider risky in itself, it’s here:

    He volunteered for the Navy… Non-pilot navy.

    That was not, in any was, risky. It was the easy way through Vietnam.

    Talk to my dad, who volunteered for US Army Infantry (If you’re gonna be one, be a Big Red 1!!), and try that “risky” BS about Kerry…

    in one week in Vietnam we’d lose more troops than we lose in a month in Iraq.

    We lost roughly the same amount on D-Day that we’ve lost to date in Iraq.

    I love hearing how Iraq is worse then Vietnam.

    Please, people… Continue… I need the laugh…

    Scott Jacobs (a1de9d)

  82. Itsme, America in Vietnam by gunter Lewy

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  83. AF – When was the U.S. supporting Osama Bin Laden?

    On the Iraq sanctions, the point everywhere is that Saddam could have potentially avoided having them continued if he complied with the terms of the Gulf War cease fire agreement. Your link even mentions the purpose of the sanctions was to force his compliance. He chose not to yet you blame us for his choice. Your mind works in strange ways, but everyone here is aware of that.

    Get your own blog. You are tiresome.

    daleyrocks (906622)

  84. Scott Jacobs #81:

    He volunteered for the Navy… Non-pilot navy.

    That was not, in any was, risky. It was the easy way through Vietnam.

    He volunteered for the Navy and he volunteered to go to Vietnam. I don’t know anyone who thought being in the Navy in Vietnam in any capacity “was not, in any way, risky.” Feel free to take that one up with a Navy vet.

    Itsme (df89f3)

  85. Robin Roberts # 82:

    Itsme, America in Vietnam by gunter Lewy

    I assume you are referring to Lewy’s claim in his book America in Vietnam that the NIS investigated and found fraudulent vets.

    However, at last report, the government has not been able verify the report’s existence, and no other historian has seen it. And Mr. Lewy had to admit that he couldn’t remember if he ever even saw it himself or was merely “briefed” on its contents.

    WSI
    (see footnotes 3 and 4)

    Itsme (df89f3)

  86. Perfect Sense, where in the world did you come up with (in regards to Kerry fighting bravely in Vietnam) “Actually, the record shows that most of the men who served with him don’t believe this.”?

    That statement is provably false, regardless as to the definition of “served with” one wishes to use.

    And speaking of false, a wound being self-inflicted in no way disqualifies it for a Purple Heart — just ask Bob Dole.

    Moving on . . . . PCD, someone else put it best — Leviticus, his first two words, in comment #9.

    I would like to add that the guy Kerry shot was actually 27 years old. At the time, we did think he was 18-20. Then that was transformed into “teenager” by some anti-Kerry people, then “kid” by John O’Neill.

    O’Neill just couldn’t stop himself from what became his favorite sound bite “Shot that kid in the back” on talk show after talk show. Even after he knew the guy wasn’t shot in the back, he just kept on running his mouth, lying about it.

    Yes, the Swift Boats were run aground that day, and yes, it was on purpose. It was all planned, in advance, with the Navy, should something happen that would warrant it. While it was the first time, it wasn’t the last. The very next time the Swifts went out — 13 days later — it happened again.

    As for Swift Boat duty being a relatively safe assignment early on in the war, I’d have to agree — sort of. To put it in perspective, it was more dangerous than most (80%-90%) assignments, but safer than others.

    Something that many people don’t realize is that the average guy in Vietnam didn’t see combat as a part of his job description. That doesn’t mean that one couldn’t get caught up in something in the course of their time in Vietnam, but combat wasn’t a part of what they did on a day-to-day basis.

    The generally accepted figure is that something like 85% of those in Vietnam were in non-combat jobs.

    When a person bashes Kerry for choosing a “safe” assignment (even though it wasn’t quite as safe as they thought), they are bashing the vast majority of guys who served in Vietnam.

    Contrary to popular belief, everybody in Vietnam wasn’t a grunt (Infantry), but most were cooks, clerks, mechanics, etc, all doing their jobs as best they could.

    Doug Reese

    Doug Reese (ae588a)

  87. Itsme, that’s interesting but does not actually refute Lewy’s book. He’s saying in ’04 that he doesn’t recall how he learned of something he wrote about nearly two decades before. I originally read the book about a decade ago after finding it in a biblography of one of R.J. Rummel’s works.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  88. #86 – Read “Unfit for Command.” Unlike anonymous MSM reporting, it is supported with something like 150-200 signed affidavits of Swift Boat veterans who served with Kerry (I’d give you the exact number, but I lent out my copy of the book).

    #84 – The US Navy suffered 4.4% of the fatalities in the Vietnam war – many of these were pilots. The Army had 66% of the deaths and the Marines suffered 25.5% of the deaths. The best way to avoid the draft was to volunteer for the Navy.

    Perfect Sense (b6ec8c)

  89. Perfect Sense, I don’t have my copy of the book either, but I can tell you this — There were about 35 affidavits, most of which have never been seen.

    There were about 255 members of the Swift Boat Veterans for “truth”. Most of them never saw Kerry in Vietnam. Precious few of them were out with him on operations and/or involved in the incidents for which he received an award.

    When I said “regardless as to the definition of “served with” one wishes to use”, I was taking into account that some guys saw Kerry in Vietnam, but didn’t go out on operations with him.

    Others did go out on operations with him — and I don’t just mean on Kerry’s boat, but on other boats. They certainly could have something to say about Kerry’s service in Vietnam.

    But the fact remains that most of those 255 never saw Kerry in Vietnam.

    The fact remains that of all the guys present for the incidents for which Kerry received an award, just a handful (for the Silver Star, none) had something negative to say.

    When you get your copy of the book back, take a look, and you’ll see I am correct. And while you’re at it look me up — and understand that what is said is pure spin.

    As for the percentages of deaths, I think if you check, you will see that the Army had the most people in Vietnam, followed by the Marines, and then the Navy. Which is to say, your percentages are misleading.

    Doug Reese

    Doug Reese (ae588a)

  90. Robin Roberts #87:

    Itsme, that’s interesting but does not actually refute Lewy’s book. He’s saying in ‘04 that he doesn’t recall how he learned of something he wrote about nearly two decades before. I originally read the book about a decade ago after finding it in a biblography of one of R.J. Rummel’s works.

    It actually makes it an unsupported claim, referring to a report that no other historian – and likely Lewy – has seen and no one can verify exists.

    (And as to Lewy “not recalling how he learned about something” – a reputable historian notes if he or she is referencing information that came from a second hand or third hand source. At the very least one would expect him or her to keep notes.)

    Add to that the fact that not a single one of these men has been outed as a fraud in all the years since WSI, despite national publicity and intense scrutiny over at least the last three years, and not a single vet whose name was supposedly misused has come forward to say so, and you have … well, a completely unsupported claim.

    In addition, not a single claim made by a vet testifying at WSI has been shown to be fraudulent. As a matter of fact, Jamie Henry’s claim has recently been shown not only to be true, but to have been investigated and found true shortly after he made it.

    LA Times

    Itsme (df89f3)

  91. Perfect Sense # 84 –

    The US Navy suffered 4.4% of the fatalities in the Vietnam war – many of these were pilots. The Army had 66% of the deaths and the Marines suffered 25.5% of the deaths. The best way to avoid the draft was to volunteer for the Navy.

    Probably so. And Kerry didn’t have to volunteer for Vietnam. But he did.

    Itsme (df89f3)

  92. Argue, argue, argue about peripheral issues all you like, you defenders of Kerry. Let’s cut to the chase and grant the premise:

    If O’Neill and Corsi are lying their asses off, they have defamed John Kerry.

    If they defamed John Kerry, Kerry has a legitimate claim for a lawsuit, since, as Beldar has pointed out,

    Those claims were certainly, indeed deliberately, injurious to his reputation; his damages arguably include the loss of the 2004 presidential election, however that might be valued in dollars and cents,”

    and Kerry could vindicate his public reputation.

    But he hasn’t. He allowed the statute of limitations run out everywhere he could file, even in his home turf, which has a generous three-year limit instead of one.

    Why, if the SBVT claims are already demonstratably, provably false, would Kerry allow this to drag on? Why not simply stick it to O’Neill and Corsi, and shut up all of his detractors? Especially since we all agree that Kerry is a ego-gratifying self-aggrandizer?

    Well?

    Paul (09c70a)

  93. If it were so simple that they were “lying their asses off”, then perhaps it would be another story, Paul. But O’Neill is smarter than that (Corsi I’m not so sure, after all he was involved in the “Kerry is being honored for helping the Vietnamese win the war because his photo is in a Vietnamese museum” lie), and outright lying is something he skillfully avoided.

    O’Neill did do a pretty good job of laying the groundwork for others to lie, like PCD did earlier in this thread (comment #4), but allowed whatever lying he did personally fall into the “I misspoke” category on talk shows.

    Unfit for Command was a collection of half-truths, misrepresentations and spin, but no lies that I could see in the areas which I have knowledge. I could see him dancing all around the truth while avoiding it in a couple of sections (regarding the Bronze and Silver Star incidents), but lies? None that I could see.

    So Beldar is free to make his annual challenge if it suits him, but my guess is it will be ignored once again.

    Doug Reese

    Doug Reese (ae588a)

  94. Probably so. And Kerry didn’t have to volunteer for Vietnam. But he did.

    You sure?

    What was his draft number?

    My dad’s was WAY outside the margins, so he would have been safe, playing the numbers game.

    He spent a tour killing Charlie, and doing it well.

    Kerry spent a couple of month, got some BS purple hearts, and went home.

    Don’t f8cking talk to me about how honorable his f*cking service was.

    Scott Jacobs (e3904e)

  95. “Kerry is being honored for helping the Vietnamese win the war because his photo is in a Vietnamese museum”

    Hell, there must be a 30′ statue of Hanoi Jane…

    Scott Jacobs (e3904e)

  96. Scott Jacobs at # 94:

    Probably so. And Kerry didn’t have to volunteer for Vietnam. But he did.

    You sure?

    What was his draft number?

    Yes. I posted a link to his request for duty in Vietnam at #78.

    I think you are confusing volunteering for duty with being drafted.

    Itsme (8ea13b)

  97. Doug Reese at #93:

    I think UFC is full of lies. In fact I pointed out a few in a previous thread on SBVT. I think Eric Rassmann does a pretty good job pointing out many others:

    http://homepage.mac.com/chinesemac/kerry_medals/truth.html

    If not lies, the misinformation is intentional. I think they followed up with quite a few whoppers in the media.

    Itsme (8ea13b)

  98. Itsme – It is an indisputable fact that when Kerry volunteered for Swift Boat duty, that it was not considered to be a dangerous or treacherous position, much the opposite. The nature and role of their usage changed, as the military adpated to conditions.

    Are you also disputing that Kerry met with the North Vietnamese? That he lied in Winter Solider? That he threw away his medals, before he didn’t throw them away? That he spent Christmas in Cambodia on Nixon’s orders before Nixon was in the White House? His magic hat?

    JD (e2fc98)

  99. Itsme #96,

    Scott’s point was that Kerry was going to be drafted. He had been denied a further deferment to study in France. He volunteered for the Navy so he would not, when inevitably drafted, be sent to the Infantry or the Marines.

    nk (a6ecc6)

  100. JD, please read my comments regarding Swift Boat duty “pre-Kerry”, in the bottom half of # 86.

    Swift Boat duty was, in fact, more dangerous than most jobs a person could have back then.

    Doug Reese

    Doug Reese (ae588a)

  101. Doug – Not very convincing or persuasive at all. Swift Boats were originally to be used to patrol coastal waters, far away from and far different from how they were eventually utilized by the time Kerry arrived.

    JD (e2fc98)

  102. Absolutely correct, JD, and as such, their job was to search boats along the coast. That job had them in harms way to a small degree, and using their weapons as a part of their job description.

    Dangerous compared to what an Infantry guy did? No. But then not many of the total number serving were Infantry.

    Dangerous compared to what the Swifts did when Kerry was there? Certainly not.

    It was, however, hands down, more dangerous than what most guys did in Vietnam.

    Doug Reese

    Doug Reese (ae588a)

  103. Itsme,

    Your comment at #78 was somewhat beside the point, and if anything confirmed the line of reasoning I was pursuing.

    The pro-Kerry line, per Kerry and friends-
    Kerry volunteered for hazardous duty with the Swift boats and was a hero.
    Bush is an idiot and a war dodger who found a way to escape danger.

    The disputed issue above was whether Kerry knowingly volunteered for particularly hazardous duty or not. If by his own mouth he acknowledged that when he volunteered for swift boat duty “they weren’t involved much in the war” my point is proven for me.

    Bush never claimed to be a war hero and never attacked Kerry’s service. But if you look at the risks they each took, I stand by my conclusion in post #72.

    Furthermore, closer to the original issue at hand, was my point that with his dishonest and deplorable behavior seen in 2004 I see no reason to trust his word on anything, and if he claims others lied about him, let him prove it under cross examination in a court of law (My post at #23). I will consider him vindicated even if the “lies” are not found to be to the level of libel or slnder, if they can be shown to be untruthful at all.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  104. Doug, take a look again at my post at #72. By the information in Wikipedia (provided earlier by Leviticus), it appears that the biggest danger running a swift boat was capsizing in rough seas patrolling off of the coast.

    Before I bet on that, I would look for more convincing sources than Wikipedia.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  105. MD – That is a fairly accurate description. Doug is trying to define danger as being anything more dangerous than being a cook in the chow hall.

    JD (e2fc98)

  106. I pretty much agree with MD, JD.

    I am simply trying to show the comparative danger of the job, and showing that it wasn’t quite as “safe” as some people think.

    And once again, the misconception is that we were all out in the jungle/rice paddies fighting the NVA and/or Viet Cong. That just wasn’t the case.

    Doug Reese

    Doug Reese (ae588a)

  107. Well, if that is your point, it is easier to make it just like that, rather than try to make it sound like Kerry volunteered for some dangerous position, which it simply was not at the time he volunteered for it. Sure, more dangerous than a cook’s job, but nobody is arguing that it was not.

    JD (e2fc98)

  108. Leviticus launched:

    Did you read the Wikipedia Article that went with that Wikipedia picture? You know, the part that said:

    “In her 2005 autobiography, she states that she was manipulated into sitting on the battery, and claims to have been immediately horrified at the implications of the pictures.”

    “gleefully”… tool.

    Save your grade school insults, pottymouth, and face facts. The smile on her lips in those wire photos (of which there are several, along with newsreel footage) doesn’t lie. And if she was truly disturbed, she kept it a closely-held secret for years.

    From the San Diego Union-Tribune, April 10, 2005:

    Fonda did a lot more in that 1972 visit to North Vietnam than demonstrate her solidarity with those who were shooting down American pilots.

    At her request, she made at least 10 broadcasts on Radio Hanoi that included calling American pilots war criminals and urging them to stop bombing North Vietnam. In a propaganda gesture heavily publicized by Hanoi, she also met with a group of coerced American prisoners of war to demonstrate, as the North Vietnamese intended, that the POWs were receiving “humane” treatment.

    In fact, as we know now, nearly all American POWs in North Vietnam were brutally tortured until 1969, when Hanoi’s policy changed to more selective mistreatment. One American POW was strung up from a ceiling by his broken arm until he agreed to listen to Fonda’s assertions that the prisoners were being well treated.

    When the POWs returned from North Vietnam in 1973 and told of their torture, Jane Fonda declared, “the POWs are lying if they assert it was North Vietnamese policy to torture American prisoners.” For good measure, she also suggested that their recollections of torture were products of “racism” toward the Vietnamese.

    Does Fonda regret her propaganda broadcasts for Radio Hanoi or her role in trying to persuade the world that tortured, brutalized American POWs were receiving humane treatment? Not a bit. Is she apologizing? No.

    Here’s what she told Leslie Stahl on “60 Minutes”:

    “I don’t think there was anything wrong with it. It’s not something that I will apologize for … we’d been saying to Richard Nixon, ‘stop this’… it needed what looks now to be unbelievably controversial things. That’s what I felt was needed.”

    It’s interesting to me that lefties probably lent more credibility to Fonda defending the VC than Rumsfeld defending US troops in Iraq in the wake of Abu Ghraib. But even with more context, you’re probably still willing to accept her revisionist history lesson. Whatever, dude. It’s your mind that’s going to waste.

    At least she’s come closer to an apology than Kerry ever has.

    Note to Pat: WordPress and Safari for Windows don’t get along.

    L.N. Smithee (93c473)

  109. “Well, if that is your point, it is easier to make it just like that, rather than try to make it sound like Kerry volunteered for some dangerous position . . . ”

    I have never, ever done that. Please read what I have said, and said many times over, here and in other forums.

    Doug Reese

    Doug Reese (ae588a)

  110. Doug said:

    Unfit for Command was a collection of half-truths, misrepresentations and spin, but no lies that I could see in the areas which I have knowledge.

    Well, then, if Unfit for Command was a ‘collection of half-truths, misrepresentations and spin’, don’t you think Kerry has a case that he can win?

    O’Neill did do a pretty good job of laying the groundwork for others to lie

    They why isn’t Kerry filing suit against them?

    Oh poor, helpless John Kerry. So put upon, so screwed of his destiny.

    Paul (09c70a)

  111. […] Patterico’s Pontifications » Beldar makes John Kerry an Offer too good to refuse […]

    Neocon News » Worthy of Note on August 29, 2007 (aaa2c9)

  112. “My dad’s was WAY outside the margins, so he would have been safe, playing the numbers game.

    He spent a tour killing Charlie, and doing it well.”

    -Scott Jacobs

    And you’d be out doing the same, if it weren’t for that darned “trick knee” of yours, right?

    From what you’ve said in the past, you would’ve gone 4-F in 1968 while Kerry volunteered for both PCF and PBR duty. Then you could’ve spent the next few years telling all your friends how “I would’ve gone, but The Man wouldn’t let me”

    … which is pretty much what you do now.

    Have fun seething, macho man.

    “It is an indisputable fact that when Kerry volunteered for Swift Boat duty, that it was not considered to be a dangerous or treacherous position, much the opposite.”

    – JD

    “It is an indisputable fact that this opinion is a fact”. Little circular logic, there. Doesn’t the fact that we’re debating that very point make your claim kinda silly?

    “I’m downright irritated at you. Not because you better me in an argument, but because you shoot yourself in the foot and leg (and are getting close to your head, so be careful).”

    -MD in Philly

    I don’t know how you figure that. I think it’s reasonably clear that Kerry moved from a position of (relative) safety (the USS Gridley) to a position of (relative) danger (the PCF’s in Cam Ranh Bay). Furthermore, the fact that his second choice of duty was command of a PBR seems to indicate that Kerry was willing to put himself in harm’s way.

    You can’t apply his later misrepresentations ex post facto to his actions in Vietnam.

    Leviticus (68eff1)

  113. Well, then, if Unfit for Command was a ‘collection of half-truths, misrepresentations and spin’, don’t you think Kerry has a case that he can win?

    Half-truths, misrepresentations and spin are unavailing elements of a defamation claim.

    Anybody unearth a source showing Kerry actually said he had plans to sue?

    steve (fbf00d)

  114. Steve,

    The Swift Boat Vets’ website claims that Senator Kerry’s lawyers sent a letter to TV stations threatening a libel suit if the station aired the Swift Boat ads:

    “Predictably, Kerry’s lawyers responded with a venomous and distorted account of the TV spot and the veterans who had organized it. Marc Elias, Esq., General Counsel for the Kerry-Edwards campaign, joined by Joseph Sandler, General Counsel for the Democratic National Committee, faxed to TV station managers the kind of intimidating message that gives lawyers a bad name.

    The three-page letter is a not-so-thinly veiled threat with only one possible goal: to scare the stations into dropping the ad. How? By misstating provable facts that back up the ad’s claims, and by shamelessly misrepresenting the law. How, specifically? On the legal side of the ledger, by trotting out the standard bogeymen for TV stations: false and misleading advertising, frowned on by the FTC; the specter of libel suits; dark hints of serious damages unless, “in the public interest,” station managers refuse to run the ad. “

    There’s more at the link about 3/4 of the way down the page.

    DRJ (bfe07e)

  115. the specter of libel suits

    Boy DRJ, was that ever an empty threat.

    By the way, that should be spectre, not specter. The Senator from Pennsylvania wasn’t involved.

    Paul (09c70a)

  116. Paul,

    Either they spell different or they didn’t watch enough James Bond.

    DRJ (bfe07e)

  117. But then not many of the total number serving were Infantry.

    It was, however, hands down, more dangerous than what most guys did in Vietnam.

    Doug Reese

    Are you seriously trying to claim that there were more people on swift-boat duty than in the infantry???

    Or are you attempting to compare the total number of Naval personel inboard ship to people who actually set foot in Vietnam?

    You’re a God Damn nut-job if you think that’s even close to an accurate picture. Naval service in Vietnam was an utter cakewalk compared to serving in the Infantry, Marines or Army.

    And you’d be out doing the same, if it weren’t for that darned “trick knee” of yours, right?

    From what you’ve said in the past, you would’ve gone 4-F in 1968 while Kerry volunteered for both PCF and PBR duty. Then you could’ve spent the next few years telling all your friends how “I would’ve gone, but The Man wouldn’t let me”

    … which is pretty much what you do now.

    Have fun seething, macho man.

    Levi, feel free to attempt to insult me. I’m sure you would have honored being drafted, and gone to serve.

    Right.

    I love how you take my assertation that Kerry was trying to dodge dangerous duty (only to end up spending a pathetic couple of months in country), and try to turn it towards me. Nice try, bubba.

    And I’m waiting on the paperwork from the Navy, btw, so I can enlist in the Army. Just in case you were wondering. My trip to the Navy had me discharged on a medical during RTD. I’m looking forward to entering the service.

    Try it some time. Might actually turn you into a decent human being.

    Or maybe not. They aren’t miracle workers. Even if they are the Army.

    Scott Jacobs (a1de9d)

  118. “It is an indisputable fact that when Kerry volunteered for Swift Boat duty, that it was not considered to be a dangerous or treacherous position, much the opposite.”

    – JD

    “It is an indisputable fact that this opinion is a fact”. Little circular logic, there. Doesn’t the fact that we’re debating that very point make your claim kinda silly?

    Leviticus – Actually, it makes you look kind of silly.

    JD (e2fc98)

  119. Mr. Reese, are you a paid liar? I think you are.

    John Kerry has been caught in multiple lies in multiple venues.

    Here’s one that is documented other than Kerry’s admitted lie about being in Cambodia on Christmas 1968 listening to PRESIDENT NIXON on the radio.

    Kerry lies needlessly about being at Red Sox-Mets World Series Game

    PCD (868aa8)

  120. Don’t forget about Kerry (although they deny it) and his buddies censoring the movie Stolen Valor in 2004. Mr. Kerry and the Democrats are big believers in the first amendment when it suits them. I seem to remember a little official goverment thuggery applied from the Democrat leadership of the House and Senate last year in trying to get ABC to quash the showing of A Path to 9/11. Patterns. Nuance.

    daleyrocks (906622)

  121. Has anybody seen that signed Form 180 yet?

    JD (e2fc98)

  122. Has anybody seen that signed Form 180 yet?

    Actually, in #80 Itsme posted links to the jpeg images of Kerry’s Form 180 in Power Line’s archives. Now why did Itsme only link to the images, not John Hinderaker’s full post?

    Probably because of this statement, submitted without comment:

    The only apparent anomaly in the Form 180s is that they only authorize the release of Kerry’s active duty records, not his reserve records. This could well be important, in that Kerry’s antiwar activities occurred when he was a member of the reserves. On the other hand, some think that the language of the 180 is broad enough that the Navy may have released Kerry’s reserve records, even though not specifically instructed to.

    The people who know, of course, are the reporters to whom the documents were sent. This is a very weird procedure–authorizing the records to be released, but only to specified reporters. It raises obvious questions: did the reporters discuss their role with Kerry or his representative before they were designated to receive the records? Were they required to agree not to make the records public, but only to report on them? What other discussions did they have with Kerry or his representatives? Are they willing to release the records, or at a minimum give us an inventory of what they received so that we can assess the completeness of the disclosure?

    Paul (09c70a)

  123. So, when he promised the full release (incidentally he promised this after he lost the election) he was either glossing over the truth, or lying.

    JD (e2fc98)

  124. Itsme wrote: As far as I know, not a single veteran who testified at the Winter Soldier Investigation has been shown to be a “fake.”

    So could you please provide that proof if you know of it?

    Here ya go. From National Review June 1, 1971:

    Al Hubbard is the executive director of the Vietnam Veterans against the War…

    Hubbard had been introduced on [an April 1971 edition of Meet The Press] by Lawrence E. Spivak as a former captain who had spent two years in Vietnam, and who had been decorated and injured in the process. The way it was later explained to me at the Washington “camp-in” was that Hubbard had been flying a transport plane into Danang one day in 1966 when he “caught some shrapnel in the spine.”

    That was April 21. On April 22, the story began to change. According to Frank Jordan, the Washington Bureau Chief of NBC News, NBC got a tip that Al Hubbard hadn’t been an Air Force captain, but instead an Air Force sergeant. NBC reached Hubbard at a Washington hotel that night, asked Hubbard about the tip, and got a confession that, indeed, he had been lying about his rank. NBC broadcast that on its 11 P.M. news that night and also interviewed Hubbard on the Today Show the next morning. As NBC’s Jordan remembers it, Hubbard explained he made up the business about having been an officer: “He was convinced no one would listen to a black man who was also an enlisted man.”

    Two weeks later, John Kerry, Yale’s contribution to the VVAW, recalled that Today Show interview, citing it as proof of Hubbard’s sincerity. “Al owned up to the rank question,” said Kerry. “He thought it was time to tell the truth, and he did it because he thought it would be best for the organization.” That, of course, neglects the fact that NBC had confronted Hubbard with its “tip” prior to the interview.

    Acknowledgment — and not obfuscation — would be appreciated.

    L.N. Smithee (7d35d5)

  125. JD # 98

    Itsme – It is an indisputable fact that when Kerry volunteered for Swift Boat duty, that it was not considered to be a dangerous or treacherous position, much the opposite. The nature and role of their usage changed, as the military adpated to conditions.

    Are you also disputing that Kerry met with the North Vietnamese? That he lied in Winter Solider? That he threw away his medals, before he didn’t throw them away? That he spent Christmas in Cambodia on Nixon’s orders before Nixon was in the White House? His magic hat?

    Sorry, JD, I’m not sure which of my posts you’re responding to. Yes, Kerry said he didn’t think he’d be doing anything but coastal patrols when he volunteered – I said that. He also volunteered for PBR duty, which was incredibly dangerous when he volunteered. As to the rest of my post, at least one other poster seems to be implying that Kerry didn’t volunteer for Vietnam, which is not true.

    I don’t think Kerry testified at the Winter Soldier Investigation. If you’re talking about his testimony before Congress, could you tell me where you think he lied?

    Kerry never claimed to have thrown away his medals. As verified by at least one eyewitness, he said he threw away his ribbons, and then a couple of medals given to him by other vets.

    I don’t think he actually said he spent Christmas in Cambodia on Nixon’s orders.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  126. The Swift Boat Vets’ website claims that Senator Kerry’s lawyers sent a letter to TV stations threatening a libel suit if the station aired the Swift Boat ads

    The 08/05/2004 DNC letter, in its critical passage:

    “Your station may freely refuse this advertisement. Because your station has this freedom, and because it is not a ‘use’ of your facilities by a clearly identified candidate, your station is responsible for the false and libelous charges made by this sponsor.”

    Kerry never announced plans to sue SBVT or even speculated on it for quote. Beldar’s revived a masturbatory improv.

    steve (fbf00d)

  127. Itsme:

    What exactly, then, was seared, seared into his memory?

    Unix-Jedi (b18156)

  128. nk #99:

    #

    Itsme #96,

    Scott’s point was that Kerry was going to be drafted. He had been denied a further deferment to study in France. He volunteered for the Navy so he would not, when inevitably drafted, be sent to the Infantry or the Marines.

    Maybe it was. He sure wasn’t very clear in that case – he responded to my point about Kerry volunteering for VN by asking if I knew his draft number.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  129. MD in Philly #103

    Itsme,

    Your comment at #78 was somewhat beside the point, and if anything confirmed the line of reasoning I was pursuing.

    The pro-Kerry line, per Kerry and friends-
    Kerry volunteered for hazardous duty with the Swift boats and was a hero.
    Bush is an idiot and a war dodger who found a way to escape danger.

    The disputed issue above was whether Kerry knowingly volunteered for particularly hazardous duty or not. If by his own mouth he acknowledged that when he volunteered for swift boat duty “they weren’t involved much in the war” my point is proven for me.

    Bush never claimed to be a war hero and never attacked Kerry’s service. But if you look at the risks they each took, I stand by my conclusion in post #72.

    Furthermore, closer to the original issue at hand, was my point that with his dishonest and deplorable behavior seen in 2004 I see no reason to trust his word on anything, and if he claims others lied about him, let him prove it under cross examination in a court of law (My post at #23). I will consider him vindicated even if the “lies” are not found to be to the level of libel or slnder, if they can be shown to be untruthful at all.

    I understand, and I’m sorry if my post added to the confusion.

    I have no interest in comparing Kerry’s duty to anyone else’s, merely in addressing the question about what Kerry volunteered for.

    The fact is that he volunteered for Vietnam when he didn’t have to. Any sort of duty on a small boat at sea is risky, but no, it wasn’t as risky as going up the rivers, and he said so. The fact is that he also volunteered for highly dangerous PBR duty.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  130. DRJ # 115:

    Steve,

    The Swift Boat Vets’ website claims that Senator Kerry’s lawyers sent a letter to TV stations threatening a libel suit if the station aired the Swift Boat ads:

    “Predictably, Kerry’s lawyers responded with a venomous and distorted account of the TV spot and the veterans who had organized it. Marc Elias, Esq., General Counsel for the Kerry-Edwards campaign, joined by Joseph Sandler, General Counsel for the Democratic National Committee, faxed to TV station managers the kind of intimidating message that gives lawyers a bad name.

    The three-page letter is a not-so-thinly veiled threat with only one possible goal: to scare the stations into dropping the ad. How? By misstating provable facts that back up the ad’s claims, and by shamelessly misrepresenting the law. How, specifically? On the legal side of the ledger, by trotting out the standard bogeymen for TV stations: false and misleading advertising, frowned on by the FTC; the specter of libel suits; dark hints of serious damages unless, “in the public interest,” station managers refuse to run the ad. “

    There’s more at the link about 3/4 of the way down the page.

    I saw that linked in another forum and agreed that any station manager would see that letter as “threatening.”

    However, I don’t see where it is a threat to sue, specifically a threat to sue for libel.

    If you look at the letter, you will see it basically talks about FCC requirements, referencing FCC holdings and rules, not libel law. The only caselaw cited is a First Amendment case based on an FCC decision – used to support the claim that stations are not obligated to run these sorts of ads.

    In addition, when they point out that the stations are free to refuse the ads, and it is not a “use” of the facilities by candidates – a term defined specifically for purposes of the FCC “political broadcasting” rules – they do not conclude by saying the stations are “liable” for the false charges made in the ads. As in legally liable for the tort of libel. Instead they say the stations are “responsible,” a term reflective of the tone of the FCC rules.

    After giving a few more FCC-related admonitions about the stations’ duties, they sign off not with a threat to sue, nor a claim that the stations are liable in tort, but with a strong suggestion that they exercise their legal authority to refuse the ads in the public interest.

    I could be wrong, but in my opinion it may be a “threatening” letter, but it isn’t a threat to sue.

    So again … anybody know of Kerry or his representatives actually threatening to sue?

    Thanks.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  131. steve (#127) wrote:

    Kerry never announced plans to sue SBVT or even speculated on it for quote. Beldar’s revived a masturbatory improv.

    I’m not sure what a “masturbatory improv” is, but I’m very sure that any TV station receiving that letter interpreted it as a threat that Kerry would sue them. It was made by his campaign’s lawyers and in his name. It is legally imputable to him personally under ordinary agency principles. Your suggestion to the contrary is silly.

    Beldar (1b82e4)

  132. Maybe it was. He sure wasn’t very clear in that case – he responded to my point about Kerry volunteering for VN by asking if I knew his draft number.

    Yeah, because if your number is up for the draft, volunteering is the best way to stay safe…

    And I’d LOVE to get into why Bush got yanked from duty…

    Here’s a hint… What was his daddy’s job at the time?

    Scott Jacobs (a1de9d)

  133. Itsme (#131): The rules you link don’t contain the word “libel.” The FCC doesn’t enforce the common law of libel. Courts do. A letter from a lawyer to a TV station that uses the word “libel” is a threat to sue for … libel.

    You can argue that the threat wasn’t meant, or that it was meant as a bluff. You can argue that Kerry thought better of it, and changed his mind. But you cannot credibly argue that no threat to sue for libel was made.

    It’s an argument that’s beneath your dignity and unworthy of your intellect. Repent.

    Beldar (1b82e4)

  134. PCD #120:

    Kerry lies needlessly about being at Red Sox-Mets World Series Game

    Kerry in Boston, at Game 6 on same night

    Itsme (702ab7)

  135. Beldar #134:

    Itsme (#131): The rules you link don’t contain the word “libel.” The FCC doesn’t enforce the common law of libel. Courts do. A letter from a lawyer to a TV station that uses the word “libel” is a threat to sue for … libel.

    You can argue that the threat wasn’t meant, or that it was meant as a bluff. You can argue that Kerry thought better of it, and changed his mind. But you cannot credibly argue that no threat to sue for libel was made.

    It’s an argument that’s beneath your dignity and unworthy of your intellect. Repent.

    Thanks Beldar, I am aware that the FCC rules do not contain the word “libel” and that the FCC does not “enforce” tort law. I thought my post was clear in that regard, but am sorry if it wasn’t.

    I’m pretty sure TV stations have lawyers who read these letters. I’m pretty sure those lawyers know when the station is being threatened with a libel suit.

    I think to “argue” that such a letter is an actual threat to sue is a very thin argument indeed. And to build an entire storyline around the idea that Kerry has threatened to sue the SBVT for libel based on nothing but this is…well, I’ll stop with that.

    So once again, could you please tell us where Kerry or one of his representatives has actually threatened to sue SBVT for libel?

    Thanks.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  136. To add to my prior:

    PS to B on lawyers knowing when a letter is threatening to sue for libel: the word “liability” is usually the tipoff.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  137. Beldar,

    Apparently repentance is not on the menu tonight.

    DRJ (bfe07e)

  138. PS to itsme: Using the word “libel” is a tipoff, too.

    DRJ (bfe07e)

  139. Itsme wrote with his arms twisted like a pretzel to match his logic: I could be wrong, but in my opinion it may be a “threatening” letter, but it isn’t a threat to sue.

    You’ve got to be kidding me.

    That defense is as ridiculous as saying “Yes, your honor, my client pointed a gun at the convenience store clerk. But the gun wasn’t loaded. Ergo, without the possible threat of deadly force, there was no intent on the part of my client to force the clerk to empty the cash register and hand the contents to my client.”

    OK, I’ll bite. If the “threatening” letter from Kerry’s attorneys weren’t a threat to sue, what was the nature of the “threat?” Hmmmm?

    L.N. Smithee (7d35d5)

  140. DRJ #139:

    PS to itsme: Using the word “libel” is a tipoff, too.

    In this context, why?

    Itsme (702ab7)

  141. haha,

    It’s sad to see some people take a campaign stunt so seriously. It’s just a game, folks.

    A few down on their luck vets were willing to lie for money.

    Maybe Kerry feels sorry for them?

    alphie (99bc18)

  142. P.S. to Kerry’s stalker er, “Itsme”: Hopefully, you’ll get around to explaining away “Captain” Al Hubbard and his experiences in ‘Nam.

    L.N. Smithee (7d35d5)

  143. L.N. Smithee #140

    You can shake it, twist it, and fold and staple it, and you will still have an incredibly weak basis for a claim that Kerry has threatened to sue SBVT for libel.

    If you are satisfied that that is enough foundation for an entire series of threads based on this supposition, nothing I can say will dissuade you.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  144. L.N. Smithee #143:

    P.S. to Kerry’s stalker er, “Itsme”: Hopefully, you’ll get around to explaining away “Captain” Al Hubbard and his experiences in ‘Nam.

    Why should I? He didn’t testify at WSI.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  145. alphie belched: A few down on their luck vets were willing to lie for money.

    Maybe Kerry feels sorry for them?

    I should think so, since lying for money worked out so well for him. Unproven allegations of atrocities brought him fame and fortune between just about anybody’s wildest dreams. A Senate seat for life, and a marriage to an heiress. And when that marriage failed, he gets an upgrade!

    Unfortunately for our ambitious J.F.K., he discovered what his Senatemate Teddy also found out the hard way: no matter how rich you are, you can’t buy the White House.

    L.N. Smithee (7d35d5)

  146. To L.N. Smithee:

    Sorry, I didn’t see your previous post about Al Hubbard. If I had I would have responded and not been so flippant in my last.

    But the fact remains that Hubbard did not testify at WSI. And not a single veteran who did has, to my knowledge, been proven to be a fake.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  147. Itsme,

    Libel is a term that has no meaning other than its legal meaning. When an attorney uses the word libel in correspondence, that alone conveys the threat – and in some cases the promise – of a lawsuit.

    DRJ (bfe07e)

  148. That’s true, L.N.,

    But on the other hand, he ain’t Larry Craig, either.

    How long can a right-wing law blog ignore his toilet games, btw?

    alphie (99bc18)

  149. Doug Reese (#86 and elsewhere): You and I have exchanged some very civil emails, and also some public comments. We’ve tried to be respectful to one another and fair with one another. I give you credit for a great deal of first-hand information that I, and many others who comment on these matters, lack. And I know that you know how chopped up both sides’ arguments got during the 2004 campaign, especially in the mainstream media, which inevitably edited everyone’s comments, often in ways that gave misimpressions.

    In your comment above, you wrote:

    O’Neill just couldn’t stop himself from what became his favorite sound bite “Shot that kid in the back” on talk show after talk show. Even after he knew the guy wasn’t shot in the back, he just kept on running his mouth, lying about it.

    I wasn’t surprised to read this, because I recall it being something that disturbed you back in 2004. But I’ll bet you’ll also recall — I could go hunt down a link, but I’ll bet you independently remember it and will acknowledge it when I remind you of it — that O’Neill and other SwiftVets also were quoted as saying, if far less prominently, that they had no fault to find with Kerry for shooting the VC soldier, and that the angle from which the fatal shot was fired wasn’t what they were criticizing. Their criticism was primarily of Kerry’s judgment in leaving his boat after it turned in to the shore to return ambush fire, and they also argued that Kerry’s actions in pursuing and shooting the VC soldier were ordinary acts of duty, not Silver Star-worthy.

    O’Neill never, ever claimed to have been an eyewitness; he was relying, in fact, on the Kranish biography’s quotes from Kerry about how the shooting happened. From page 102:

    Kerry followed and fired, killing the man. “I don’t have a second’s question about that, nor does anybody who was with me,” Kerry recalled of his decision to shoot. “He was running away with a live B-40, and, I thought, poised to turn around and fire it.”

    And it was Kranish from the Globe who first made out like there was some sin if Kerry had shot the soldier in the back, which immediately prompted Kerry to equivocate. Continuing on in that same paragraph:

    Asked whether that meant Kerry shot the guerrilla in the back, Kerry said, “No, absolutely not. He was hurt, other guys were shooting from the back, side, back. There is not a scintilla of question in any person’s mind who was there [that] this guy was dangerous. He was a combatant, he had an armed weapon.”

    This rings a bell with you, right?

    My point is, I don’t think you’re a guy who thinks in sound bites. You understand that context and completeness are important, and that those are things which have been badly missing from most of the discussion on these issues.

    What you call my “annual challenge” might just as well be called my “annual lament.” Had Kerry sued, then in the course of a full-blown trial, all that context and completeness could have been provided. That would have become a fair way to sort this all out, much more methodically than you or I can do here, even when we’re trying to be respectful of each other’s points of views and careful with our own rhetoric.

    Beldar (1b82e4)

  150. Itsme parroted: Kerry never claimed to have thrown away his medals. As verified by at least one eyewitness, he said he threw away his ribbons, and then a couple of medals given to him by other vets.

    From ABCNews.com April 26, 2004:

    Contradicting his statements as a candidate for president, Sen. John Kerry claimed in a 1971 television interview that he threw away as many as nine of his combat medals to protest the war in Vietnam.

    “I gave back, I can’t remember, six, seven, eight, nine medals,” Kerry said in an interview on a Washington, D.C., news program on WRC-TV called Viewpoints on Nov. 6, 1971, according to a tape obtained by ABCNEWS…

    …Throughout his presidential campaign, Kerry has denied that he threw away any of his medals during an anti-war protest in April 1971.

    …And in an interview with ABCNEWS’ Peter Jennings last December, he said it was a “myth.”

    But Kerry told a much different story on Viewpoints. Asked about the anti-war veterans who threw their medals away, Kerry said “they decided to give them back to their country.”

    Kerry was asked if he gave back the Bronze Star, Silver Star and three Purple Hearts he was awarded for combat duty as a Navy lieutenant in Vietnam. “Well, and above that, [I] gave back the others,” he said.

    The statement directly contradicts Kerry’s most recent claims on the disputed subject to the Los Angeles Times last Friday. “I never ever implied that I did it, ” Kerry told the newspaper, responding to the question of whether he threw away his medals in protest.

    He stormed off the set of Good Morning America grumbling that Brian Ross and Chris Vlasto — who had broken the story and nailed Kerry with the WRC video — were doing the bidding of the RNC.

    L.N. Smithee (7d35d5)

  151. alphie: But on the other hand, [Kerry] ain’t Larry Craig, either.

    How long can a right-wing law blog ignore his toilet games, btw?

    That’s all you got? In the words of Darth Vader, “All too easy.” (Except this time, it’s accurate.)

    L.N. Smithee (7d35d5)

  152. Paul #123:

    Actually, in #80 Itsme posted links to the jpeg images of Kerry’s Form 180 in Power Line’s archives. Now why did Itsme only link to the images, not John Hinderaker’s full post?

    Probably because of this statement, submitted without comment:

    The only apparent anomaly in the Form 180s is that they only authorize the release of Kerry’s active duty records, not his reserve records. This could well be important, in that Kerry’s antiwar activities occurred when he was a member of the reserves. On the other hand, some think that the language of the 180 is broad enough that the Navy may have released Kerry’s reserve records, even though not specifically instructed to.

    The reason I posted links to the jpgs and not to the webpage is because I prefer original sources where possible.

    Kerry’s SF 180 did authorize an “undeleted report” of any discharges ever granted to him. This would include information affecting the nature of his discharge.

    http://www.nysun.com/article/15790

    By the way, my understanding is that there really wouldn’t be any reserve records beyond the ones the public has already seen, as Kerry was transferred to the Individual Ready Reserve with no drilling or other obligations that would require ongoing paperwork.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  153. Itsme (#136 & 137): You’re the only one who’s pretending that the letters to the TV stations wasn’t a threat to sue. Yes, they also threatened to make trouble with the FCC. But use of the word “libel” is a threat to file a civil libel suit “on its face.”

    And actually, using the word “responsible” (either instead of, or in addition to, the word “liable”) would be read by a lawyer defending a media publication — as I can attest, having been in that position (e.g., representing CBS in a Fifth Circuit libel appeal) — as a signal that the plaintiff might seek non-monetary (injunctive) relief as well as money damages. Now, savvy media outlets would know that’s probably a mostly-empty threat because of First Amendment limitations on prior restraint; and savvy lawyers wouldn’t threaten an injunction action directly for the same reason. And yet: There are cases every damn year in which some judge somewhere amazes us all by granting just those sort of injunctions. They’re usually dissolved by appellate courts within hours or days, but only at a cost to the defendants and after a serious disruption of their ongoing publications.

    I’m not going to further debate this point with you. You’ve devolved into troll territory on it; I don’t think you can be making such an argument in good faith, or if you are, it can only be because you’re so profoundly misinformed about the legal system as to be an unfair target.

    Beldar (1b82e4)

  154. itsme – Should we all just take the word of the select few Kerry buddies in the media that were given access to this information?

    JD (e2fc98)

  155. L.N.,

    Only two swiftboaters actually served in combat with John Kerry.

    By their own testimony, neither of them were in a position to see how Kerry acted during that combat.

    What more do I have to “have?”

    Y’all are (once again) backing up people who lied for political gain.

    When will you rubes ever figure out you’re being used?

    alphie (99bc18)

  156. DRJ #148:

    Itsme,

    Libel is a term that has no meaning other than its legal meaning. When an attorney uses the word libel in correspondence, that alone conveys the threat – and in some cases the promise – of a lawsuit.

    Yes, it does have a legal meaning. Exactly right.

    And when a lawyer sends a letter threatening to sue for libel, he or she usually includes the word “liability” along with a discussion of the basis for that liability and citations to libel law. Not a discussion of FCC requirements and citations to FCC regs and holdings.

    You are perfectly welcome to believe what you want about this letter. It just seems silly to build an entire argument that Kerry has threatened to sue the SBVT or stations that showed their ad based on such a tenuous claim.

    But then again, SBVT supporters seem perfectly willing to build castles out of hot air.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  157. I think some are inclined to argue whether there is anything worth arguing about or not.

    I thought my posts at 72, 103, and 104 were pretty clear, but protests continue to be attempted that aren’t addressing the same things.

    One last time.

    Leviticus-
    1. We agree that as of 2004 his willingness to distort the truth was impressive and deplorable.
    2. I do not know when he developed this trait (though I suspect it was before his 1971 Senate testimony)
    3. Since I do not know when he began this behavior, I am not going to consider his testimony to be truthful, even if only to tell me his birthday.
    4. If he is in an argument over whether he is being deceitful or someone else is, I say Kerry is a known liar and not to be believed unless he proves otherwise, even if the disagreement is over whether the moon is made of cheese or not.

    If you insist on going “by the record”, let’s go by the record- what do we know for sure
    – he volunteered to go into the Navy during Vietnam
    – he volunteered for swift boat duty when swift boats were not seeing much direct involvement with engaging the enemy per his own testimony
    – he had a second request that was for hazardous duty (you claim, and I will not dispute at the moment)- SO WHAT, the 3 ANG pilots Bush served with all said he volunteered to go to Vietnam as they did, but only 2 of the 4 had enough flying hours at the time to qualify.

    This is not a discussion whether Kerry volunteered to go to Vietnam, volunteered to do swift boat duty, or even if his medals were earned. It is a discussion whether:
    1. Is he to be trusted?- No
    2. Did he volunteer for duty that was particularly hazardous and known to be so by him at the time?- Not really, by his own admission. Somewhat hazardous? Sure, 6 boats were lost to rough seas alone. If he wanted to be the macho warrior he should have volunteered for special ops training(I don’t think the SEALs were organized as the SEALs at that time) or for training as a Navy pilot.
    YOUR OWN REFERENCE indicates that swift boat service, while not without risk, was not known for sailors lost while infiltrating the Cambodian border on secret missions.

    Itsme-
    We agree he volunteered for the Navy, whether “he had to or not” and by what criteria you judge that I don’t know
    I’ll take your word for it that he volunteered secondarily for “highly dangerous duty”, but that means nothing to me. His character is such that he manipulates for appearance sake. For all I know he may have been certain he would have never been given his second choice.

    Think for a moment, if he really wanted to see action, why did he volunteer first for a position that he later admitted was not really in the middle of it.

    Lest all of that obscure what I want to emphasize:

    SUMMARY
    1. John Kerry’s presentation of himself in 2004 as a proud Vietnam Vet was in direct contradiction to his behavior after his tour in Vietnam and during the presidential election of 1992.
    2. His misrepresentation of himself was to the extreme and deplorable.
    3. With that record from his own mouth I do not give weight to anything he says. If he is in a dispute, even with the Devil himself, let John Kerry prove his truthfulness.

    Furthermore-
    John McCain clearly had commendable service in Vietnam. For that he has my utmost respect. FWIW, because of many political actions he has taken, I would never vote for him for President (unless the alternative was Hillary or Barach Obama, that is).

    It was John Kerry and the Dems who started the comparison of war records. If a closer scrutiny of details doesn’t show such an advantage in the macho category for Kerry it’s not our fault.

    Last word from me, for cryin’ out loud- let’s use our brains-

    Kerry’s hero is the previous JFK, who was a Navy officer, so he signs up for the Navy, so he signs up for a swift boat, which is real duty but not running point on a marine patrol, fine.

    Bush’s father was a fighter pilot, so he joined the ANG and became a fighter pilot- he didn’t go to the AF Academy, he wasn’t ROTC, he probably wasn’t going to be first up for an active duty fighter seat even if he wanted to be. Had he really wanted to “play safe” I’m sure he could have found safer duty than running intercept of Soviet bombers coming out of Cuba over the Gulf of Mexico.

    None of it should have been much of an issue (as Kerry proposed in 1992), but then Kerry made it an issue as if 1970, 71, and following never happened. He should have been laughed right back into his little boat across Boston harbor and the dems allowed to pick a new candidate (like they did for the senate seat for NJ when Toricelli was in legal trouble, though he was the candidate).

    Hate Bush and every conservative or Republican on earth, Sen. John Kerry has not conducted himself in a way to be worthy of your efforts on his behalf.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  158. Beldar, I have asked you to please show where Kerry or his representatives have actually – in no uncertain terms – threatened to sue SBVT or the TV stations who showed their ad for libel.

    If it’s so clear that he has it should be easy enough to show without having to perform acrobatics deciphering a single ambiguous letter.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  159. JD # 154:

    itsme – Should we all just take the word of the select few Kerry buddies in the media that were given access to this information?

    Sorry, I don’t know which post you’re responding to.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  160. alphie #155:

    Only two swiftboaters actually served in combat with John Kerry

    Actually it was more than that. But not that many.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  161. itsme – Should we just take the word of the select few media buddies that he allowed access to his records, after purportedly signing a full release via the Form 180?

    Itsme – It is not at all common for the plaintiff’s bar to send out a fleshed out argument on the merits in a demand for settlement or resolution of an issue. They make plenty of demands, but substantiation is not generally their strong suit.

    JD (e2fc98)

  162. You can argue that the threat wasn’t meant, or that it was meant as a bluff. – Beldar

    Super. Can I also argue you’ve re-inflated an air castle?

    Kerry never revealed any ambition to sue O’Neill, et.al. Not even to speculate on it for quote.

    steve (fbf00d)

  163. Right, steve. His lawyers meant libel in the non-legal way.

    JD (e2fc98)

  164. Itsme, Alphie is very reliable. If he posts a “fact”, you can count on it being wrong.

    Robin Roberts (6c18fd)

  165. JD at #161:

    #

    itsme – Should we just take the word of the select few media buddies that he allowed access to his records, after purportedly signing a full release via the Form 180?

    Well, I’m guessing you wouldn’t. However, I’d give a lot more credence to the SBVT complaints that Kerry didn’t do their research for them, I mean give them independent access to his records, if I saw any evidence that they’d actually researched the records they had.

    In addition, there is very little information in regard to Kerry’s time in Vietnam that can’t be obtained just by going down and searching the archives or submitting a FOIA request.

    Itsme – It is not at all common for the plaintiff’s bar to send out a fleshed out argument on the merits in a demand for settlement or resolution of an issue. They make plenty of demands, but substantiation is not generally their strong suit.

    I guess you’re talking about the letter here. In this case the letter was full of arguments and even substantiation for those arguments, just not arguments for tort liability.

    In addition, it’s hard for me to see someone claiming the reader has liability for libel while assuming the “defense” will be the FCC “political broadcasting” rules. (fourth paragraph from the bottom)

    But really, whatever floats yer boat, so to speak. I agree it’s a threatening letter. They wanted the stations to drop the ads. It’s not a particularly well-written letter and has more than one factual mistake.

    You want to see it as a credible threat to sue for libel, sufficient – absent ANY other proof – to support an entire case that Kerry has threatened to sue, be my guest. You certainly aren’t alone.

    I just think it seems pretty silly.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  166. Had he really wanted to “play safe” I’m sure he could have found safer duty than running intercept of Soviet bombers coming out of Cuba over the Gulf of Mexico.

    FOr the record, Bush the Younger was NEVER going to get sent to ‘Nam, no matter what.

    You don’t send the SON of the fucking DIRECTOR OF THE CIA into a war zone.

    People who bitch about him not going forget to think for even a second as to WHY he didn’t go.

    Scott Jacobs (a1de9d)

  167. itsme – So when they were talking about libel, that was just some hypothetical or rhetorical flourish?

    JD (e2fc98)

  168. Scott Jacobs #166:

    FOr the record, Bush the Younger was NEVER going to get sent to ‘Nam, no matter what.

    You don’t send the SON of the fucking DIRECTOR OF THE CIA into a war zone.

    People who bitch about him not going forget to think for even a second as to WHY he didn’t go.

    Well, he probably didn’t go because he volunteered for service that wasn’t likely to lead to deployment to a war zone. He also checked the box that said “no” to overseas duty.

    As to why he didn’t go, well, he did say he chose TANG over shooting out his eardrum or going to Canada.

    But as far as the son of the CIA director not getting sent to a war zone … GHWB wasn’t appointed to that position until 1975. I think he was a Congressman when GWB entered TANG.

    But don’t forget, both of LBJ’s sons in law served in combat in Vietnam.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  169. JD #167:

    #

    itsme – So when they were talking about libel, that was just some hypothetical or rhetorical flourish?

    Actually, I think they used the term “libelous” and it was in reference to the content of the ads. But I think the letter is full of “rhetorical flourishes.”

    As I say, you are welcome to get out the concordance and decipher as you wish. It doesn’t seem like much support for the argument that Kerry was frothing at the mouth waiting to sue the SBVT.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  170. Beg pardon. Content of the ad, singular. Not ads.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  171. And libelous, being a term of art in the law, has what meaning outside of the its legal connotation?

    JD (e2fc98)

  172. Scott — When I said “But then not many of the total number serving were Infantry.”, I was pointing out that most of the guys who served in Vietnam were not in the Infantry. The number was roughly 10%.

    You Asked: “Are you seriously trying to claim that there were more people on swift-boat duty than in the infantry???”

    Of course not.

    You Asked: “Or are you attempting to compare the total number of Naval personel inboard ship to people who actually set foot in Vietnam?”

    No, I wasn’t.

    You Said: “You’re a God Damn nut-job if you think that’s even close to an accurate picture. Naval service in Vietnam was an utter cakewalk compared to serving in the Infantry, Marines or Army.”

    PBR, Swift Boats (about when Kerry began on Swifts) and SEAL Team duty ranks right up there with the Infantry.

    It was not, by any stretch, a cake walk. I spent 8-9 months with the Infantry, and went out with PBRs a number of times. And after that, went out a number of times with the Swifts.

    I would be hard pressed to decide which of the three was the more dangerous.

    You seem to be lumping in all the guys who were in the Army (or Marines) with the Infantry. Only a small percentage of guys in the Army were in the Infantry. That percentage of Infantry types is somewhat higher in the Marines. The remainder — the majority — are much-needed support troops.

    Doug Reese

    Doug Reese (b4958f)

  173. JD, they said some of the statements made in the ad were libelous. They did not claim the station was liable in tort for running the ad. The term “responsible” has meaning within the context of FCC rules, hard for a station’s lawyer to miss when used in a sentence based on FCC requirements.

    Is it a well written letter? No.

    But as I said, you are welcome to think as you like about the letter. I obviously cannot dissuade you. I do wonder if it bothers you that this is evidently the ONLY support offered for the idea that Kerry was threatening to sue SBVT or those who ran their ads.

    If it doesn’t, why not?

    Itsme (702ab7)

  174. PCD — You asked if I was a paid liar. No, I am not.

    Are you?

    Perhaps you would care to point out my lies. What exactly have I lied about?

    I look forward to, but do not expect, an answer.

    Doug Reese

    Doug Reese (b4958f)

  175. His lawyers meant libel in the non-legal way.

    Stations cannot be sued for libel or slander based on a candidate’s remarks. The letter cited rulings that such may not be the case with groups like O’Neill’s. In this, Kerry was not shown to manifest an intent to sue, nor have comments ever been attributed. The entire realm of right blogland would have archived a quote.

    steve (fbf00d)

  176. It does not bother me in the least. Why? Because, as evidenced by your pretzel like contortions required to hold your position, the easiest and most logical conclusion is that if Kerry was speaking of libelous content to the TV station, it is abundantly clear that he was talking about just that. As libel, or libelous, have very specific meanings within the law, and carry a very specific mechanism for recourse, it is simply implausible to think that this was not a threat to pursue a libel action. That is exactly what it was.

    JD (e2fc98)

  177. steve – Are you playing dumb, or does that come naturally?

    JD (e2fc98)

  178. JD, thank you for your response. I suppose it doesn’t surprise me that you are not bothered.

    I will leave to the reader to decide who is displaying contorted logic here.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  179. Itsme – How am I contorting logic when I am taking them at their own word? They expressed their intent, and you are saying that they did not mean what they said, which takes a whole heck of a lot of twisting to arrive at the conclusion that Kerry paid lawyers to try to stop the airing of the commercials, and in their attempts to do so, they specifically referenced libelous statements, and you would have us believe that they really meant something else, maybe they were just wrong, not libelous. Who is contorting?

    JD (e2fc98)

  180. Are you playing dumb, or does that come naturally?

    That from the insult Rolodex?

    steve (fbf00d)

  181. Nope. I just felt like responding to a grade school argument with a grade school taunt.

    JD (e2fc98)

  182. JD – I think you are displaying contorted logic because you are making assumptions about intent that isn’t evidenced in the actual wording of the letter.

    Again, I just find it hard to believe that anyone seriously considers this enough evidence to support thread after thread about Kerry’s supposed desire to sue for defamation.

    Can you point to a single statement made by Kerry or his representatives unambiguously threatening SBVT with a lawsuit? A single one? If so, please post it.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  183. Beldar — I know exactly what you are talking about. It is in Unfit for Command, and was said many times by O’Neill and others back then.

    That’s what makes it especially galling to hear him go on like that with the “Shot that kid in the back” bit. Apparently Elliott didn’t like it either, for many of the same reasons.

    And as for the (accurate) quotes about what Kerry had to say about the shooting of Ba Thanh (the VC), they make perfect sense to me.

    Kerry answered a question from Kranish, and then clarified it when Kranish asked a follow-up question.

    When you know that the killing wound was in the left side, and that Ba Thanh was looking back at the boat (which was off to the left and slightly behind him) and/or looking over his shoulder to see if someone was following him, what Kerry said makes perfect sense.

    And as for this “Their criticism was primarily of Kerry’s judgment in leaving his boat after it turned in to the shore to return ambush fire, and they also argued that Kerry’s actions in pursuing and shooting the VC soldier were ordinary acts of duty, not Silver Star-worthy.” . . . .

    I’m sure we discussed this before, but what the heck . . . . what Kerry did by going after Ba Thanh could well have saved the boat and crew. He could have played it safe and hoped he would not fire the B-40, or that Fred Short up on the twin-50 would eventually shoot the guy . . . . but he didn’t. He took off after him.

    I would venture a guess that if he had not done that, and the B-40 was fired at the boat with a loss of life, we would be discussing what a coward he was for not going after Ba Thanh.

    What Kerry did fit the situation. It made sense. If it didn’t, I would think some of the other 24 of us there would have said something.

    Assuming you have read the after-action report (O’Neill ignored it in Unfit for Command. Gee, I wonder why?), you can see that the award was for more than just shooting Ba Thanh.

    O’Neill misrepresented what happened, what I and others said, ignored the after-action report and what he knew about the background of what really happened. All-in-all, those pages of the book have left me with little, if any, respect for O’Neill.

    By the way, while I have mentioned it in other forums, I don’t know if I have here — did you know we went up that same canal 13 days later, and that Kerry got off the boat again and was once again involved in ground combat?

    Ever wonder why O’Neill hasn’t complained to high heaven about that also? I mean, if it was so damn stupid the first time, why wasn’t it the second time?

    As for your annual challenge/lament, well, I’ll leave that to you lawyers!

    Doug Reese

    Doug Reese (b4958f)

  184. Doug Reese #183:

    I mean, if it was so damn stupid the first time, why wasn’t it the second time?

    And yes, why didn’t Larry Thurlow complain about it? Oh yes, he jumped off his boat and went ashore too.

    I seem to recall that William Rood did the same thing at the second ambush site on February 28. Yet not a word of criticism or snarking about his Bronze Star.

    Itsme (702ab7)

  185. Doug,

    You like to cast aspersions in a futile attempt to deflect the truth about Kerry. You so doggedly stick to the falsehoods around Kerry, that you are either paid or are a “kool-aid drinker”.

    Now, why do you defend such a liar? Kerry lies for no reason and in such a ham handed way.

    PCD (039691)

  186. 183, Doug, how many of these reports you refer to, especially the recommendataions for citations, were written by Kerry? You care to come clean with that?

    PCD (039691)

  187. PBR, Swift Boats (about when Kerry began on Swifts) and SEAL Team duty ranks right up there with the Infantry.

    It was not, by any stretch, a cake walk. I spent 8-9 months with the Infantry, and went out with PBRs a number of times. And after that, went out a number of times with the Swifts.

    I would be hard pressed to decide which of the three was the more dangerous.

    I don’t even know how to start telling you how retarded this is. PBR and Swift Boats was COVETED infantry duty. EVERYONE wanted to be on a boat.

    Most of the time the VC just let th eboats pass them. When they attacked, the boats could disengage at WILL. High speeds plus a river makes for a fine road out of trouble.

    Boat duty was cake. If you think it’s even close to what infantry patrols went through, you must not have done much in the way of patrols.

    Scott Jacobs (c0db90)

  188. I’m sure we discussed this before, but what the heck . . . . what Kerry did by going after Ba Thanh could well have saved the boat and crew. He could have played it safe and hoped he would not fire the B-40, or that Fred Short up on the twin-50 would eventually shoot the guy . . . . but he didn’t. He took off after him.

    Or he could have followed teh rules and instead of beaching the boat, he could have piloted it up or down river, away from the amazingly inacturate weapon…

    No, he decided to remove the greatest assests from the boat (speed and manurverability) and park the thing.

    And people say Bush is stupid?

    Scott Jacobs (c0db90)

  189. “Unfortunately for our ambitious J.F.K., he discovered what his Senatemate Teddy also found out the hard way: no matter how rich you are, you can’t buy the White House.”

    – L.N. Smithee

    Not sure how you can say that with a straight face… given that it happened in 2000.

    “Had he really wanted to “play safe” I’m sure he could have found safer duty than running intercept of Soviet bombers coming out of Cuba over the Gulf of Mexico.”

    – MD in Philly

    Yeah, ’cause that happened all the time. Cuba had bombers coming out the woodwork.

    Even if this were the case, it wouldn’t matter. Know why (of course you do)? Because Bush wasn’t there.

    Here’s an excerpt from that link:

    “A review of Bush’s military records shows that Bush enjoyed preferential treatment as the son of a then-congressman, when he walked into a Texas Guard unit in Houston two weeks before his 1968 graduation from Yale and was moved to the top of a long waiting list.

    It was an era when service in the Guard was a coveted assignment, often associated with efforts to avoid active duty in Vietnam. Bush was accepted for pilot training after having scored only 25 percent on the pilot’s aptitude test, the lowest acceptable grade.

    In 2000, the Boston Globe examined a period from May 1972 to May 1973 and found no record that Bush performed any Guard duties, either in Alabama or Houston, although he was still enlisted.”

    -Washington Post

    MD in Philly:

    Let me be totally clear on this: I think Kerry is a disingenuous moron. He is a terrible politician come from a rich family, and I have no respect for him.

    Be that as it may, it drives me crazy that some people (i.e. SBVFT, PCD) have the gall to criticize Kerry’s war record when the record of their boy is so fucking pathetic by comparison.

    I AM NOT PRO-KERRY; I’m anti-asshole, which leads me to

    Scott Jacobs:

    Where the fuck do you get off contradicting Doug Reese? The man was in the infantry, on the PBRs, and on the PCFs, and he says all three were dangerous… and you, who’ve never been to war, tell him he’s “retarded”, just because his account of things is at odds with Daddy’s war stories.

    While you’re at it, why don’t you call Itsme a retard for having a basic knowledge of the Vietnam timeline, and bitch-slapping you with it (regarding “CIA Director” Bush Sr.)?

    Leviticus (68eff1)

  190. Scott — Thank you for sharing your amazing knowledge about Swift Boats & PBRs. I will pass on your assessment/comparison of them to Infantry duty at the next Mobile Riverine reunion. Better yet, why don’t you go there in person and tell them?

    I hesitate to comment on what you just said (# 188) regarding the incident that occurred February 28, 1969, considering your expertise and all, but . . . .

    This may come as a shock to you, but beaching the boat that day was not something Kerry did on the spur of the moment. It was discussed in advance with the Navy. It was discussed in advance with the local Vietnamese commander and with us advisors.

    Apparently you didn’t get the memo, but that maneuver was approved. In fact, it is, in part, the reason Kerry was awarded the Silver Star.

    Oh, and in case you didn’t know, all three boats on that operation had already beached, and those of us on the boats got off and were on the ground.

    Would you have Kerry and the other two boats just take off and leave us?

    Doug Reese

    Doug Reese (b4958f)

  191. And I’ll be sure to pass your assertation that PBR’s were just as nasty as Infantry work to my old man. The dark Horses love that kinda humor.

    Scott Jacobs (c0db90)

  192. Where the fuck do you get off contradicting Doug Reese?

    About the same place you get off calling me a coward.

    Scott Jacobs (c0db90)

  193. You draw the criticism by leveling the same claim at individuals who have actually been in combat. If they’re cowards, well…

    Leviticus (68eff1)

  194. PCD,

    Hmmm, you and Scott, what a team. I hardly know where to begin.

    Would you mind being specific? When you say “You like to cast aspersions in a futile attempt to deflect the truth about Kerry . . . “, exactly what are you talking about? Please give me an example or two.

    As for the recommendations for citations, well, we know who wrote the ones for Kerry’s Silver Star and Bronze Star, and it wasn’t Kerry. Jim Rassmann wrote up Kerry for the Bronze Star, and one of Kerry’s higher-ups (I forget which one) wrote him up for the Silver Star. That is a matter of public record.

    So, in that regard, the US government has “come clean with that”.

    Doug Reese

    Doug Reese (b4958f)

  195. No… that’s wrong.

    Scott, I’m sorry. It’s stupid of me to imply that you’re a coward when all you want to do is serve your country. It just steams me that people don’t give Kerry that same respect. In the heat of the moment, I tried to put you on the receiveing end of that situation. Once again, I’m sorry.

    That said, I stand by my remarks about the relative merit of Kerry’s war record when compared to Bush’s.

    Leviticus (68eff1)

  196. I would be dimes to dollars that the fighter jet training that President Bush completed was as dangerous as the Swift Boat duty of Kerry.

    JD (5edd3b)

  197. Teresa’s been doing a great job here over the past couple of days. I’m surprised the world hasn’t burned up with her attention turn here instead.

    daleyrocks (906622)

  198. Doug, who’s public record? The Kerry sanitized one, or the real what happened. Kerry is a proven liar. ANYTHING he says has to be fact checked by a non-Democrat spin doctor before I believe it, and you are a Democrat spin doctor.

    PCD (039691)

  199. I tried not to get caught up in the posting frenzy, but I had to ask Doug Reese a question. He says that Kerry can’t sue the Swifties for lying because they were too smart to get caught at it. As he posts:

    “Unfit for Command was a collection of half-truths, misrepresentations and spin, but no lies that I could see in the areas which I have knowledge.”

    Uh, what is the other half of a half-truth called?

    Gregg Calkins (fdd559)

  200. “I would be dimes to dollars that the fighter jet training that President Bush completed was as dangerous as the Swift Boat duty of Kerry.”

    -JD

    Look at the damn link.

    Leviticus (43095b)

  201. Itsme #152: The reason I posted links to the jpgs and not to the webpage is because I prefer original sources where possible.

    And it was just a coincidence that your source for the jpegs, the Power Line post by John Hinderaker, refuted your argument?

    Riiiight.

    Levi #200: Look at the damn link.

    You go back and look at #71, Levi. This is the second time I’ve pointed this out to you.

    Paul (09c70a)

  202. Shorter Itsme:

    I demand proof that Kerry threatened a lawsuit, and any proof you display will be summarily disqualified because I said so!

    Paul (09c70a)

  203. Leviticus said:

    “Yeah, ’cause that happened all the time. Cuba had bombers coming out the woodwork.

    Even if this were the case, it wouldn’t matter. …
    “A review of Bush’s military records shows that Bush enjoyed preferential treatment as the son of a then-congressman, when he walked into a Texas Guard unit in Houston two weeks before his 1968 graduation from Yale and was moved to the top of a long waiting list. [No, he was on the list to be a pilot, not the same list as 150 for non-pilot duty.]
    It was an era when service in the Guard was a coveted assignment, often associated with efforts to avoid active duty in Vietnam. [Yeah, tell that to all of the other ANG pilots who went to Vietnam] Bush was accepted for pilot training after having scored only 25 percent on the pilot’s aptitude test, the lowest acceptable grade. [Of course, don’t mention the superior grades for officer potential, etc.]
    In 2000, the Boston Globe examined a period from May 1972 to May 1973 and found no record that Bush performed any Guard duties, either in Alabama or Houston, although he was still enlisted.” [They should have looked harder, the evidence is there] – Washington Post

    I don’t think this can be said without sounding condescending, so here goes:

    We almost had a nuclear war with the Soviet Union over Cuba, remember? It was the norm for aircraft to do threatening runs to see response times and the like.

    Your argument sounds a bit condescending towards me. Even if Bush “was AWOL” which he wasn’t during that last period of time in the guard, he had logged plenty of hours by then in an F-102. Dag, if that was the kind of preferential treatment I got I would have told you to keep it. let me sit on the ground or at least fly in something that doesn’t crash 3 times as often as other fighters.

    Check out http://www.wingmenforbush.com if you’re willing to read what some of his colleagues had to say, including putting a bit of perspective on the Turnipseed quote.

    Over and out.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  204. Gregg – The other half of a half truth is the area that the Left operates in.

    JD (fd9a5b)

  205. Doug Reese #194:

    As for the recommendations for citations, well, we know who wrote the ones for Kerry’s Silver Star and Bronze Star, and it wasn’t Kerry. Jim Rassmann wrote up Kerry for the Bronze Star, and one of Kerry’s higher-ups (I forget which one) wrote him up for the Silver Star. That is a matter of public record.

    Well I believe George Elliott has said he wrote up the recommendation for the Silver Star, and it may be verified elsewhere. Elliott also wrote the recommendation for the Bronze Star, and Cmdr Horne signed it. Neither of them denies that.

    And Elliott, Hoffmann, Lonsdale, and Zumwalt all said in 1996 that every award was thoroughly reviewed, including eyewitness interviews.

    Bronze Star recommendation

    Itsme (89b05c)

  206. Paul #201


    And it was just a coincidence that your source for the jpegs, the Power Line post by John Hinderaker, refuted your argument?

    Riiiight.

    Yes, it was the jpgs I had saved, not a webpage. The question was whether they existed or not. Sorry it didn’t meet your approval. I do believe I addressed your/Hind’s concerns about the reserve records, though. Sorry if that didn’t meet your approval either.

    Itsme (89b05c)

  207. Shorter Paul: anything that gets tossed out there is proof, dammit !!!

    Itsme (89b05c)

  208. No, the records have not been released. Kerry has selected what records, and to whom they will be released. Given his perfidy on these topics, there is no reason to suspect that all of the records have been released. None. Zero. Zip. Nada. Sifr. Kown.

    JD (0b8ce0)

  209. JD – Kerry might have selected to whom his records would be released, but he didn’t select what ones would be released to them. See the signed Form 180s linked at #80.

    Itsme (89b05c)

  210. Can I get you guys a cool towel or something?

    I believe we’re at break point.

    steve (9bc21e)

  211. And we are just supposed to take the word of Sen. Kerry’s friends in the media what those records show? Thanks, but no thanks.

    JD (0b8ce0)

  212. Well JD, can you tell me exactly what you think Kerry hasn’t released, besides his personal medical records? Or should release?

    Itsme (89b05c)

  213. PCD — I’m a democrat spin doctor? That’s pretty funny.

    What I am is someone who was there for some of what the anti-Kerry folks like to talk about. Some on this forum in this thread, and much of it flat out false. And then there’s the whole specter of comments of those of us who were there taken out of context, comments/info that is conveniently ignored or misrepresented — you name it.

    But democrat spin doctor? Not hardly. This isn’t about politics . . . for some of you, perhaps, but not for me.

    Doug Reese

    Doug Reese (0f2dce)

  214. Doug Reese,

    I am not a John Kerry fan politically or of his actions and statements denigrating the military, but I can still separate that from and respect his military service. I’m not sure but it appears you do not have a problem with his actions or statements, so I’m curious whether you believe John Kerry should sue the Swift Boat Vets.

    I can understand why people don’t always sue when they have problems – it’s expensive and no fun – but if John Kerry knows he is right and his accusers are wrong and given that many sympathetic lawyers are undoubtedly willing to help him sue without fees, doesn’t it make sense to sue? Similarly, does his failure to sue make you wonder about the underlying validity of these accusations or do your personal experiences enable you to resolve any concerns?

    DRJ (bfe07e)

  215. Yes, it was the jpgs I had saved, not a webpage. The question was whether they existed or not.

    No, the question is that why did you need Power Line’s versions if you already had them saved? If you already had them saved, then they already existed, right?

    You are a liar and obfuscator throught this entire thread. If proof were a crocodile tearing off your legs, you would deny it happening, Bagdad Bob.

    Paul (09c70a)

  216. Paul #215:

    No, the question is that why did you need Power Line’s versions if you already had them saved? If you already had them saved, then they already existed, right?

    You are a liar and obfuscator throught this entire thread. If proof were a crocodile tearing off your legs, you would deny it happening, Bagdad Bob.

    I didn’t say I had saved anything except those “versions” – I said I saved jpgs and not a webpage. The fact that I linked to them should make that clear. Sorry, but you’re just not making much sense here.

    And given the level of discourse you’ve engaged in on this thread … well, I’ll let the reader draw his or her own conclusions.

    Itsme (73e330)

  217. PS, the question was whether the SF 180s existed, not whether the jpgs existed.

    Itsme (73e330)

  218. Itsme- re 212-

    Perhaps an original discharge something other than honorable based on his collaboration with the enemy and hearsay accusations against his fellow servicemen, that was eventually changed to honorable during the Carter years?

    In spite of all of his medals, even if earned, a discharge less than honorable would be hard to explain for a hero, and would put the spotlight on his activities that earned him that. Some would have applauded him for those things in the past, but he chose to downplay and emphasize something else.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  219. “Perhaps an original discharge something other than honorable based on his collaboration with the enemy and hearsay accusations against his fellow servicemen, that was eventually changed to honorable during the Carter years?”

    Wow. That level of oblivious ignorance and paranoia just blows me away. What’s next, the faked moon landing? Alien abductions!!? As if the AP the Globe and the LA Times could keep such secrets. As if they’d want to. If someone found that it would be golden. But no, no, there’s a gobal conspiracy to keep republicans out of power.

    AF (e7839e)

  220. “oblivious ignorance and paranoia”- AF

    Let me remind myself and others that if we find something that doesn’t make sense, we can ask before acting rudely or stupidly. I generally consider it rude to label someone as having “oblivious ignorance”. Whether the comment was also stupid I will let the source and others ponder.

    AF, if you want to say something serious and worthy of a response, please do.

    Until then, for anyone observing the thread, this is not an original suggestion. John Kerry was granted an honorable discharge in 1978 per this document (no alien dust was reportedly found, nor fingerprints of Dan Rather):

    http://fl1.findlaw.com/news.findlaw.com/hdocs/docs/jkerry/hondisres.pdf

    There was much discussion as to the timing being so late, and whether it reflected an original “Other Than Honorable” Discharge for the reasons mentioned above, that was later converted when President Carter gave amnesty, or whatever exactly he did, for people who left the country to avoid the draft, etc. One such discussion, including posts by JAG lawyers, is to be found here:

    http://beldar.blogs.com/beldarblog/2004/10/was_kerrys_orig.html

    AF, you do a remarkable job of challenging people to remain civil. Do you practice law that includes trial proceedings?

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  221. “oblivious ignorance and paranoia”- AF

    Let me remind myself and others that if we find something that doesn’t make sense, we can ask before acting rudely or stupidly. I generally consider it rude to label someone as having “oblivious ignorance”. Whether the comment was also stupid I will let the source and others ponder.

    AF, if you want to say something serious and worthy of a response, please do.

    Until then, for anyone observing the thread, this is not an original suggestion. John Kerry was granted an honorable discharge in 1978 per this document (no alien dust was reportedly found, nor fingerprints of Dan Rather):

    http://fl1.findlaw.com/news.findlaw.com/hdocs/docs/jkerry/hondisres.pdf

    There was much discussion as to the timing being so late, and whether it reflected an original “Other Than Honorable” Discharge for the reasons mentioned above, that was later converted when President Carter gave amnesty, or whatever exactly he did, for people who left the country to avoid the draft, etc. One such discussion, including posts by JAG lawyers, is to be found here:

    http://beldar.blogs.com/beldarblog/2004/10/was_kerrys_orig.html

    AF, you do a remarkable job of challenging people to remain civil.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  222. MD in Philly #218:

    Itsme- re 212-

    Perhaps an original discharge something other than honorable based on his collaboration with the enemy and hearsay accusations against his fellow servicemen, that was eventually changed to honorable during the Carter years?

    In spite of all of his medals, even if earned, a discharge less than honorable would be hard to explain for a hero, and would put the spotlight on his activities that earned him that. Some would have applauded him for those things in the past, but he chose to downplay and emphasize something else.

    MD in Philly, if anyone had bothered to research the discharge papers already made public by Kerry, they would know that there is absolutely no basis for such a supposition. They would have known that the papers themselves disprove such a theory.

    As a matter of fact, that information was posted at Beldar’s own site prior to the 2004 election, by an individual who actually bothered to get hold of the original BUPERSMAN regulation.

    It’s a little hard to read, but here it is:

    Helbig post

    Itsme (87322d)

  223. MD in Philly:

    You might also be interested in reading what the Washington Times had to say about this issue, back in October, 2004. Although, unlike Mr. Helbig, the reporter didn’t get the detailed background regarding the original regulation, he did print some relevant information provided by the Navy:

    Navy officials say any documents that might pertain to Mr. Kerry’s four months in Vietnam, such as after-action reports, are not personnel records and thus not subject to SF-180.

    Those papers can be found in archives or sought by reporters via Freedom of Information Act requests. Some have been located by reporters and authors.

    Some veterans, including those who served with him, are angered by Mr. Kerry’s anti-war stances and his statements denigrating the military after he left active duty in 1970. Here are some of the charges brought by Internet bloggers and veterans opposed to Mr. Kerry:

    *Mr. Kerry did not receive an honorable discharge. “My guess is that he was discharged in the ’70s but not honorably,” said one blogger in a widely circulated e-mail.

    This accusation is refuted by Mr. Kerry’s DD214, a separation-from-active-duty document. It was provided to him by the Navy and posted on his Web site, JohnKerry.com.

    Mr. Kerry joined the Navy in 1966, completed officer training and served nearly four years on active duty. He requested an early separation in December 1969, which was granted a month later.

    The Navy issued the DD214 that January 1970 that lists his “character of service” as “honorable.”

    * A second charge is that Mr. Kerry did not successfully fulfill his time in the Reserves, so a special board had to be convened to determine what type of discharge he should receive.

    Navy documents show that in 1978, he received an “honorable discharge certificate” after a board of officers convened and reviewed his record.

    Navy officials say today that the board was standard operating procedure at that time for all reservists and does not indicate Mr. Kerry did anything wrong.

    After service just short of four years on active duty, Mr. Kerry transferred to the Ready Reserve and then in 1972 to the standby Reserve. He was not required to attend drills under those two designations, says a Navy official who asked not to be named.

    * A third charge: Mr. Kerry got his Vietnam War medal citations reissued in the 1980s because he was stripped of them for misconduct.

    Navy officials say that there is no evidence that Mr. Kerry’s Silver Star, Bronze Star and three Purple Hearts were ever rescinded and that there is no evidence of misconduct in his records.

    He did receive new medal citations in the mid-1980s. Officials say the Navy receives scores, and perhaps hundreds, of such requests each year from veterans who want a second copy or have lost the originals.

    The citations are simply put through a machine that implants the signature of the current Navy secretary. John Lehman’s signature, via a machine, appears on Mr. Kerry’s new citation for his Silver Star.

    “Records indicate Kerry did his duty” – Rowan Scarborough, THE WASHINGTON TIMES, October 18, 2004

    You can find this article in the paid archives or pull up the full text for free if you have a Newsbank or other database available through your public library website.

    Itsme (87322d)

  224. AF #219:


    #

    “Perhaps an original discharge something other than honorable based on his collaboration with the enemy and hearsay accusations against his fellow servicemen, that was eventually changed to honorable during the Carter years?”

    Wow. That level of oblivious ignorance and paranoia just blows me away. What’s next, the faked moon landing? Alien abductions!!? As if the AP the Globe and the LA Times could keep such secrets. As if they’d want to. If someone found that it would be golden. But no, no, there’s a gobal conspiracy to keep republicans out of power.

    Well, the certainly didn’t mind telling the world about his embarrassing college records.

    Itsme (87322d)

  225. Doug Reese at #183:

    And as for this “Their criticism was primarily of Kerry’s judgment in leaving his boat after it turned in to the shore to return ambush fire, and they also argued that Kerry’s actions in pursuing and shooting the VC soldier were ordinary acts of duty, not Silver Star-worthy.” . . . .

    I’m sure we discussed this before, but what the heck

    *****

    O’Neill misrepresented what happened, what I and others said, ignored the after-action report and what he knew about the background of what really happened. All-in-all, those pages of the book have left me with little, if any, respect for O’Neill.

    Doug, just in case you are checking back in…

    Yes, you did discuss this before, and brought up this very point (and I posted some similar points). And B still has not addressed it.

    Patterico thread

    (#s 77,123, 140)

    Itsme (87322d)

  226. To AF and Itsme-

    Whether or not the concern I raised was shown to be unfounded or not I think it was a valid question to be raised and not in the realm of alien abductions. Unless you claim, AF, that Kerry never met with any representatives from North Vietnam, nor flaunted his disrespect for the military by throwing somebody’s medals (or ribbons, whatever) over the White House fence.

    I had “bothered” to do a little research on the subject, and actually saw the discussion on Beldar. I saw a lot of conflicting opinions there, including one from a JAG lawyer with 10 years experience giving an analysis that suggested the concern over Kerry’s posted document of 1978 was reasonable.

    I don’t plan to “bother” to do any more research concerning John Kerry, for indeed I have seen enough footage of him speaking in 71, 04, and 05 that I have more important things to be concerned with. My post that began this little tit-for-tat was merely a suggestion of what might be in his military file that he would not want disclosed. Apparently you are of the mind that it is not possible that something could be found there that would sully his reputation (if that’s so, why didn’t he post his signed release form and all of the contained records therein, like he posted other forms which you have referred to).

    I am of the mind I don’t need to see any forms of his about anything anywhere, he has already given ample testimony which I have seen.

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  227. MD in Philly #224:

    I had “bothered” to do a little research on the subject, and actually saw the discussion on Beldar. I saw a lot of conflicting opinions there, including one from a JAG lawyer with 10 years experience giving an analysis that suggested the concern over Kerry’s posted document of 1978 was reasonable.

    I don’t plan to “bother” to do any more research concerning John Kerry, for indeed I have seen enough footage of him speaking in 71, 04, and 05 that I have more important things to be concerned with. My post that began this little tit-for-tat was merely a suggestion of what might be in his military file that he would not want disclosed. Apparently you are of the mind that it is not possible that something could be found there that would sully his reputation (if that’s so, why didn’t he post his signed release form and all of the contained records therein, like he posted other forms which you have referred to).

    Well, I don’t think posting the contents of a regulation is an “opinion.”

    And if if you are speaking of the former JAG who opined that under the current version of the BUPERS reg, Kerry should have been discharged in 1975, that is the exact problem Mr. Helbig points out.

    If that former JAG or any of those SBVT supporters had looked at the original BUPERS reg, they would know that it didn’t take effect until 1977, and was not published in the manual until Jan. 1978. Thus Kerry’s service could not have been reviewed until 1977-78.

    You are entitled to your opinion of John Kerry. Please just don’t pretend it’s based on objective facts in the case of his discharge.

    Itsme (87322d)

  228. PS, his “signed release form” has been posted on the Internet, and you may peruse three of them using the links posted at #80.

    Itsme (87322d)

  229. Itsme-

    I’m happy to be educated and corrected when there is factual evidence that is clear.

    You asked in 212 for us to speculate what kind of things he should release that he hadn’t yet, implying that everything that could be known about him was already revealed.

    I pointed out one concern which had been voiced. In fact, I presented it as a hypothetical “perhaps”, because at most I knew it was a question raised, not purporting a fact that was true.

    Had you given the information for the benefit of my edification and education I would have happily accepted it. I would prefer to discuss an issue, not trade barbs, belittle participants, and nit-pick.

    I will clarify one point that doesn’t seem clear. My “opinion of John Kerry” as I described above does not depend on the details of his discharge, no matter what those details may be, hence I have no reason to “pretend” anything.

    My opinion of him is based on his own words given in public forums in 1971, 2004, and 2005. He gained fame/infamy accusing the US military of widespread atrocities in 1971, never giving specific information that led to the conviction of any individuals that I’m aware of, and repudiated his service by appearing to throw his medals over the White House fence; then he presented himself as a proud and decorated Vietnam Vet as if we were too stupid to remember or care. Adding insult to injury, after the election was over, he went back to language “reminiscent of calling our troops equivalent to the hordes of Genghis Khan”.

    That seems clear and undeniable to me. Do you disagree, and if so please explain. Do you agree, but simply think it doesn’t matter?

    Do you believe he was speaking truthfully in ’71 and also sincere in his presentation as a proud vet in 2004?

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  230. MD in Philly:

    Thank you for your response. I too value facts over barbs and belittling other participants, and appreciate that you do too. I admit to being guilty of it at times and apologize if my barbs have outweighed the points I’ve been trying to make.

    My main point about Kerry’s records is that as far as I can see there is little of relevance that has not already been made public or that cannot be obtained by going down to the archives or submitting FOIA requests, as the Navy people pointed out to the Washington Times reporter.

    The personnel records that are subject to privacy rules are for the most part not disputed. I don’t think anyone questions the validity of his fitness reports, for example. After action reports, medal recommendations, medal citations, personnel casualty reports, etc. are, unless classified, all obtainable as public records.

    His discharge records, as released, tell the complete story to anyone who is willing to do the research.

    So I find myself pretty disgusted with the likes of John O’Neill and friends blaming Kerry for not doing their research for them.

    I understand that you object to the testimony he gave in 1971. Fair enough. None of the testimony he repeated from the Winter Soldier Investigation – and they were repeated, not his – has to my knowledge been shown to be untrue. In fact the sorts of events he described can be found in many court martial records. While the intent of the investigation was not to instigate criminal charges, at least one claim was investigated and found to be completely true – but the Pentagon itself declined to bring charges. This fact didn’t come to light until recently:

    LA Times

    From everything I have read, including interviews with those who were there, Kerry was very conflicted about throwing his ribbons over the fence (he never claimed he threw his medals), and there is a pretty well-known picture of him sobbing in his wife’s arms afterwards.

    In addition, Kerry has probably done more for Vietnam vets in his public life than most of the pro-war politicians out there. He helped found the Vietnam Veterans of America, for instance, and was a strong advocate of Agent Orange research and treatment.

    I don’t think he “went back to language reminiscent of calling our troops equivalent to the hordes of Genghis Khan” after the election, unless you can quote me some specific examples. This is the only one I can think of:

    You’ve got to begin to transfer authority to the Iraqis. And there is no reason, Bob, that young American soldiers need to be going into the homes of Iraqis in the dead of night, terrorizing kids and children, you know, women, breaking sort of the customs of the–of–the historical customs, religious customs. Whether you like it or not…

    SCHIEFFER: Yeah.

    Sen. KERRY: …Iraqis should be doing that. And after all of these two and a half years, with all of the talk of 210,000 people trained, there just is no excuse for not transferring more of that authority.

    Meet the Press

    Was it helpful for him to use the word “terrorize” instead of, say, “terrify” ? No. Is it accusing American troops of ravaging the countryside? No, not in my opinion anyway.

    Itsme (87322d)

  231. Oops, that last link was to “Face the Nation,” not “Meet the Press.” Sorry.

    Itsme (87322d)

  232. Also by the way to MD in Philly, I don’t think his “presentation as a proud vet” was any sort of instant re-invention.

    From what I can tell, he included his status as a Vietnam veteran in all his Senate campaigns starting in 1984. He never shied away from his antiwar past, but he also never let anyone denigrate his service. It was after Shannon criticized him for fighting and then protesting the Vietnam war, a group of vets called the “dog hunters” formed to stand up for him and has been around ever since. Don’t forget that some of the same SBVT members who criticize him now stood up for him in 1996 (on the issue of chasing down the VC with the rocket launcher).

    In addition, he’d always stayed in touch with the men from his boats, and helped them when he could. He was an honored speaker at at least one Swift Boat reunion in the mid-90s.

    Itsme (87322d)

  233. I just came across LN Smithee’s # 151:

    Itsme parroted: Kerry never claimed to have thrown away his medals. As verified by at least one eyewitness, he said he threw away his ribbons, and then a couple of medals given to him by other vets.

    From ABCNews.com April 26, 2004:

    Contradicting his statements as a candidate for president, Sen. John Kerry claimed in a 1971 television interview that he threw away as many as nine of his combat medals to protest the war in Vietnam.

    “I gave back, I can’t remember, six, seven, eight, nine medals,” Kerry said in an interview on a Washington, D.C., news program on WRC-TV called Viewpoints on Nov. 6, 1971, according to a tape obtained by ABCNEWS…

    …Throughout his presidential campaign, Kerry has denied that he threw away any of his medals during an anti-war protest in April 1971.

    …And in an interview with ABCNEWS’ Peter Jennings last December, he said it was a “myth.”

    But Kerry told a much different story on Viewpoints. Asked about the anti-war veterans who threw their medals away, Kerry said “they decided to give them back to their country.”

    Kerry was asked if he gave back the Bronze Star, Silver Star and three Purple Hearts he was awarded for combat duty as a Navy lieutenant in Vietnam. “Well, and above that, [I] gave back the others,” he said.

    The statement directly contradicts Kerry’s most recent claims on the disputed subject to the Los Angeles Times last Friday. “I never ever implied that I did it, ” Kerry told the newspaper, responding to the question of whether he threw away his medals in protest.

    He stormed off the set of Good Morning America grumbling that Brian Ross and Chris Vlasto — who had broken the story and nailed Kerry with the WRC video — were doing the bidding of the RNC.

    Actually, if you find the original tape and look at it, you will see that Kerry did not say he gave back “medals” at all. He was asked, “how many did you give back, John?” and answered “I gave back I can’t remember, six, seven, eight, nine.” If you look at the tape you will see that even the transcript is incorrect.

    In addition, the whole ABC thing was a false issue. Kerry has never denied returning his awards in 1971. They were his ribbons. He never said, or implied, that he gave back his medals.

    For whoever’s around to read this.

    Itsme (edb6b1)

  234. lol, I started off as an anti-Kerry nahsayer and did my research to get the dirt, but curiously every time I thought I had something on him I found I was wrong. If I went back to the original transcripts and followed them, all I ended up with was the opposite of dirt. By the time I was done researching I found I was, not only, a Kerry supporter but I had found a hero in him. Life is funny.

    katie (045b98)


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