Skip to comments.Sen. John Kerry's SWIFT meltdown: Hugh Hewitt on why Dem's campaign, lib pundits are floundering
Posted on 08/11/2004 2:31:04 AM PDT by JohnHuang2
Wednesday, August 11, 2004
Kerry's SWIFT meltdown
Posted: August 11, 2004
1:00 a.m. Eastern
By Hugh Hewitt
© 2004 WorldNetDaily.com
At this writing, the Kerry campaign has not yet responded to the media meltdown that is occurring around John Kerry's four decades of stories built on his secret, illegal missions into Cambodia during the four months he skippered a SWIFT boat.
It is impossible to stonewall a story that broke out of the blogosphere and into the major media on Monday night and Tuesday morning, so eventually John Kerry is going to have to stand by his wildly implausible tales of cross-border excellent adventures, or he's going to have to apologize for inventing personal history.
Here are the facts. Not long after returning from Vietnam, John Kerry began telling people he had been sent into Cambodia on an illegal patrol on Christmas Eve 1968. He repeated that story on the floor of the Senate in 1986, to an AP reporter in 1992, and as recently as June 2003 was regaling a Washington Post reporter with a story of how he had ferried a CIA man secretly into Cambodia, and how he'd kept the man's hat as a reminder of that journey.
The Christmas-Eve-in-Cambodia story has already been completely shredded by the SWIFT boat vet critics of Kerry, and it is hard to imagine how Kerry is going to defend the CIA man who was never there, given independent testimony from Navy vets that the SWIFT boats never went into Cambodian waters. If Kerry was sent on a secret drop-off mission, he's going to have to come up with some proof, especially with the Christmas Eve narrative now so discredited.
The blogosphere pushed this story forward, with an early flare going up at KerryHaters on May 21, and then a gang tackle of the facts by Instapundit, RogerLSimon, JustOneMinute, Powerline, CaptainsQuarters and, of course, me.
We teed it up after the publisher of "Unfit for Command" released a sample chapter from the new book which brought the Cambodian myth to light. I spent all day Thursday, Friday and Monday on the story on my radio program, and Monday night Carl Cameron ran with a story on "Special Report" with Brit Hume, followed by an "O'Reilly Factor" segment with Steve Gardener, a SWIFT boat vet who served on Kerry's boat. Gardener denied ever having been to Cambodia. The Kerry campaign first denied that Kerry had ever claimed to have been in Cambodia, and then recanted upon being shown the 1986 Congressional record, promising to get back to Fox News with an explanation.
No explanation has shown up more than 12 hours later. In the interim, the New York Post has run a story, as has the London Telegraph, and the Washington Times' editors have produced a powerful editorial on the subject.
Why all the attention? Simply put, if John Kerry can be conclusively demonstrated to have lied about aspects of his Vietnam service, the media has to ask what else has he been lying about. The voters have to ask if he can be trusted. In short: Free fall.
The lefty bloggers and talking heads are stunned into silence, and have gotten no help from the Kerry people. It's hard to spin a story that hasn't been spun by the campaign since Kerry could elect to go in completely different directions. If he hangs tough on the Christmas Eve and CIA man stories, his allies will know to hang tough as well. But they can't do that without a clear signal, because if Kerry comes out and apologizes for a tall tale, the commentators are cut off at the knees.
A nasty dilemma. Perhaps the lefty pundits should try sticking with the truth: It looks very bad for Kerry. It looks like he's been lying and padding his Vietnam resume for decades and that the elite media was so in love with the story they didn't bother to check it out. It looks like Kerry's selective release of his military and health records was smoke, and that the big-time journalists at the New York Times, Boston Globe, Los Angeles Times and Washington Post fell for it.
Now we get to see if there's any pride left in the newsroom. Do any of these writers, reporters and producers resent getting played by Kerry? If so, payback will be stiff. Too early to tell whether Bush-hatred trumps anger at getting suckered. More to follow ...
The Bush haters are irrational. Remember how we were all called "Clinton Haters"? At least we had real reasons to want him removed from office.
I keep asking myself if President Bush can withstand this 24/7 hate fest? The liberal 527 groups are spending HUGE $$$ to defeat Bush. These are dangerous hate filled people!
First this is illegal I would think, second he's allowing more of our Troops and other nations troops to be killed just for the sake of getting elected. It's realy telling what kind of CIC he'd make.
Has any of our well read FReepers been able to turn up any news articles to afirm what RUSH mentioned?
"It's seared - SEARED - in my memory!"
Yup, those Asians are big on celebrating Christmas, huh John.
I wonder what wino he paid to acquire the hat?
When it's a 'Rat political candidate, such as Clinton, now Kerry, they always fall for it ... the candidates know they will and expect them to ... it's a given.
KERRY LIED . . . while good men died
A gathering of Vietnam veterans from across America
Where: Upper Senate Park, Washington, D.C. It is easy to get to, shady and pretty, with a great view of the Capitol dome in back of the speaker's platform. THIS IS A NEW LOCATION AS OF 7/17/04
When: Sunday, Sept 12, 2004 2:00-4:00 PM (EDT)
Why: To tell the truth about Vietnam veterans. To counter the lies told about Vietnam veterans by John Kerry
All Vietnam veterans and their families and supporters are asked to attend. Other veterans are invited as honored guests.
If you are in DC on the 11th, look for the National March Against Terror.
In God We Trust
A group of European social democrats, led by former British Foreign Minister Robin Cook, met last week with several top Democratic politicians and party officials. They included US senators Hilary Clinton and Joseph Biden
Blessings -- Brian
The only reason the Liberals care about Kerry's Vietnam experience is that they feel it gives him credibility on National Security matters, making him pretty much the only Democrat in the United States who can make that claim (besides Joe Lieberman who is disqualified, of course). Because they aren't particulary interested in his actual opinion on National Security, they don't really care about the particulars of his Vietnam experience.
The Media will be gladly rolled on this one. Kerry will issue some mealy-mouthed obvious lie about navigational error and the Fog of War, and the Medial will lick the hand that feeds them.
That's a perfect description of the zeitgeist.
I love that word, zeitgeist.
The only thing the Kerry campaign has been able to do is parse words. It's the 2004 equivalent to "depends on the meaning of 'is' is".
It's not that they fall for it, the Liberal media simply gives Democrats a freakin' pass.
All of a sudden, character matters to the Left.
From the Washington Post article:
"A close associate hints: There's a secret compartment in Kerry's briefcase. He carries the black attaché everywhere. Asked about it on several occasions, Kerry brushed it aside. Finally, trapped in an interview, he exhaled and clicked open his case.
"Who told you?" he demanded as he reached inside. "My friends don't know about this." The hat was a little mildewy. The green camouflage was fading, the seams fraying.
"My good luck hat," Kerry said, happy to see it. "Given to me by a CIA guy as we went in for a special mission in Cambodia."
Kerry put on the hat, pulling the brim over his forehead. His blue button-down shirt and tie clashed with the camouflage. He pointed his finger and raised his thumb, creating an imaginary gun. He looked silly, yet suddenly his campaign message was clear: Citizen-soldier. Linking patriotism to public service. It wasn't complex after all; it was Kerry.
He smiled and aimed his finger: "Pow."
Oh, what a tangled web we weave...
What Shezza said. The lefties will do a xlintoon if its proved that sKerry is and was lying about some (or all) of his exploits in 'Nam.
"Its just a exaggeration."
"A little white lie.
"Some lame bragadicio."
"Besides, everyone does it."
But not everyone is a United States Senator and a candidate for the presidency.
A lot of South Vietnamese were Catholic.