Skip to comments.Kerry's Anti-War Legacy
Posted on 02/22/2004 11:20:00 AM PST by secretagent
Washington -- They gathered in a Detroit motor lodge in early 1971, veterans calling on brother veterans to speak of the unspeakable -- war crimes and atrocities they had committed in Vietnam in the name of America.
The so-called Winter Soldier meetings were controversial even then, and a young John Kerry made their most horrific testimony the opening paragraphs of his own address to a Senate panel three months later, an appearance that catapulted him to a leading role in the anti-war movement.
Kerry told senators that more than 150 veterans testified in Detroit that they or fellow soldiers had raped Vietnamese women, cut off ears and heads, used electrical torture, cut off limbs, "razed villages in a fashion reminiscent of Genghis Khan, shot cattle and dogs for fun, poisoned food stocks, and generally ravaged the countryside of South Vietnam . . ."
Kerry critics, like Mackubin Thomas Owens, a Marine platoon leader in Vietnam who now teaches at the Naval War College, accused Kerry of helping "slander a generation of soldiers who had done their duty with honor and restraint." One professor, Guenter Lewy, wrote a 1978 book that attacked the credibility of the Winter Soldier hearings, saying a Navy investigation found some coached or bogus testimony.
John Hurley, Kerry's veterans director, insists that most veterans are glad someone stood up and said things that weren't popular at the time. "There were a lot of guys who came back home who felt guys were dying over there for no reason," Hurley said. "A lot of vets are grateful to John Kerry for standing up and giving voice to their frustration in Vietnam."
(Excerpt) Read more at newsday.com ...
I think I'll go down to the bookstore and look for Lewy.
In his book, America in Vietnam, author Guenter Lewy noted a subsequent inquiry by the Naval Investigative Service that found that many of the veterans who spoke in Detroit refused to be interviewed even when offered immunity, and some who reported the most grisly atrocities were fake witnesses who had used the names of real veterans.
In an interview, Lewy termed the Winter Soldier project "completely unreliable and untrustworthy" and doubts that Vietnam War atrocities were officially condoned or as widespread as the Detroit testimony indicated.
Lewy said he does not recall if he saw a copy of the naval investigative report or was briefed on its contents. "I'm quite confident the information is authentic," he said. Paul O'Donnell, a spokesman for the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, said officials were searching for a copy of the report
Someone needs to ask Kerry who hired the fake vets who gave testimony...
All Freeper Vets should print this out and Post it everywhere we can.
The pro-Kerry side still maintains the truth of the Winter Soldier Investigation. A sample:
The claims that the WSI hearings contained falsified testimony from men who were not veterans is an old one, and it's definitely false. The testimony was startling even at the time it took place: startling to the general public, startling to the military and the Nixon administration, and startling to those who participated because each of them knew a piece of the story, but the hearings brought a great many of them together for the first time and provided a venue in which they could be heard for the first time. It's hardly surprising that those on the other side would set out almost immediately to discredit them.
They sound quite confident about the WSI.
They'll concede that AL Hubbard and others lied, but that those liars didn't testify at the WSI.
I have a narrow focus right now. Document the lies of just one of the WSI witnesses.
But cranks up the sensationalism (I think) by citing the WSI as fact. Therein, all kinds of psycho cruelty get committed, deliberately.
I suspect that some of the witnesses at the WSI lied, just like other atrocity mongers lied.
But I can't prove it to my satisfaction, yet.
Having said that, the article was pretty damn good reporting of the facts.
I think they think highly of Burkett, author of "Stolen Valor"
HANOI, Feb 22, 2004 - Vietnamese President Tran Duc Luong announced in Hanoi today that Socialist Republic of Vietnam has approved the awarding of the Friendship Decoration for US Senator John Forbes Kerry.
General Secretary Nong Duc Manh stated, "This award is long overdue and the government of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam wishes to express it's heartfelt gratitude for then Lt. John Kerry's hard work and dedication to halting Yankee Imperial aggression against the peace loving people of Vietnam".
President Tran Duc Luong and General Secretary Nong Duc expressed the gratitude of the Vietnamese people for Senator Kerry's brave stand in pointing out that, "At times they (US Forces) had personally raped, cut off ears, cut off heads, taped wires from portable telephones to human genitals and turned up the power, cut off limbs, blown up bodies, randomly shot at civilians, razed villages in fashion reminiscent of Genghis Khan, shot cattle and dogs for fun, poisoned food stocks, and generally ravaged the countryside of South Vietnam in addition to the normal ravage of war, and the normal and very particular ravaging which is done by the applied bombing power of this country."
(JOHN KERRY'S TESTIMONY BEFORE THE SENATE FOREIGN RELATIONS COMMITTEE, APRIL 22,1971
"These brave statements listing the atrocities committed against the peace loving people of Vietnam by the Yankee Imperialist aggressors of the United States helped raise the morale of our dispirited troops after the military defeats of Tet 1968. They also provided us with information which we were able to broadcast to the US Air Pirates and Criminals in our care at the time, pointing out that even their fellow Countrymen recognized their criminal behavior.
As Colonel Bui Tin wrote: "Every day our leadership would listen to world news over the radio at 9AM to follow the growth of the antiwar movement.
Visits to Hanoi by Jane Fonda and former Attorney General Ramsey Clark and ministers gave us confidence that we should hold on in the face of battlefield reverses. We were elated when Jane Fonda, wearing a red Vietnamese dress, said at a press conference that she was ashamed of American actions in the war and would struggle along with us .... those people represented the conscience of America .... part of it's war- making capability, and we turned that power in our favor"
Colonel Bui Tin, served on the general staff of the NVA
Instituted on June 20, 1960, the Friendship Decoration was awarded to foreigners, who supported and helped the Vietnamese in the defense of their country. It is a 30mm round disk. The obverse depicts two hands shaking with the North Vietnamese flag in the background. The inscription reads, DOAN KET CHIEN THANG GIAC MY (Solidarity against American Aggression).
The Socialist Republic of Vietnam hopes the Senator Kerry accepts this award and will not throw it back over the wall at our Embassy at a later date.
I don't think that Kerry was even at or had anything to do with the Winter Soldier Meetings. He repeated selected unverified hearsay testimony from those meetings slandering the United States of America for selfish personal advantage and without regard as to it's consequences to the welfare of our troops and POWs in Viet Nam.
I am firmly convinced that many of the names on the Wall are a direct consequence of actions of Kerry, Fonda, Clark and their ilk.
Kerry has become the latest in a line of office seekers to "Wave the Bloody Shirt" where any questions as to his actions concerning anything remotely considerate military/security can be answered by I served, was decorated and wounded and since Bush didn't he is not qualified to question me.
I can already tell you his answer:
"How DARE you question my service in Vietnam! Why are republicans who didn't serve questioning we democrats who did?!"
(As I just posted on the Sunday Show Daily Thread, I refuse to watch ABC, but Fox showed a clip of Kerry from today's GS program and that last sentence is almost a verbatim quote. With each public utterance Kerry is sinking to new depths. I know he also included that baseless charge in his hateful statement/letter.)
I googled too, following your tip. Link to the longer article:
LOL. Good work Sam. I love this last line! They probably would like to give him one.
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