Skip to comments.The Swifties Real Victory
Posted on 11/20/2004 2:11:56 PM PST by FairOpinion
The election is over but the bickering never stopped. Some voters are suffering from "post election stress disorder." Pundits and partisans are stepping up to next face-off: judicial appointments. Yet the country has united on one issue: Vietnam.
Ernest Lefever described the American attitude toward Vietnam: "The two diametrically opposed interpretations of Vietnam continue to vie for the American psyche. Until the issue is resolved, we will suffer from a kind of historical schizophrenia."
The parade of Vietnam Veterans across the stage at the Democrats National Convention received a standing ovation, the first of its kind from the protesting class. The Democrats saw John Kerry's Vietnam service as his most attractive quality. Some countered that Kerry's activities in the 1970's maligned two million American service members. The Swift Boat Veterans questioned if John Kerry's service was as honorable as that of his peers. But all agreed that Vietnam Veterans are national heroes, an admission long overdue by the Left.
John O'Neill shined a spotlight into the shadows and declared: We are not the war criminals John Kerry described. In his 1971 Senate testimony, Kerry had quoted hearsay from an anti-war conference, charging widespread atrocities and American war crimes. None of the testimony was ever verified. Several participants were proven to be impostors.
Forty years later, John Kerry "reporting for duty" exuded pride in his Vietnam service. He had no apology for the fellow soldiers he had described as "a generation of monsters," no explanation to the POWs for advocating a unilateral withdrawal of American forces.
America remembered how Vietnam Vets were treated. "My father had red paint poured on him when he came back from Viet Nam." Dave, now an Army Reservist, recounted. "You can't live a normal life when you're being spit on, when you have bags of feces thrown at you, or when some idiot is dumping red paint on you or calling you a baby killer."
Vietnam Veterans were personified as damaged victims and drug crazed social failures. Yet suicide rates, drug abuse rates and incarceration rates are no higher for Vietnam Vets than for non-vets, Mackubin Thomas Owens reports. In fact, 91% were "glad they had served their country." Broadcasting their proud faces, John O'Neill showed America that the crazed brother hidden in the attic is really the neighboring Grampa who shovels out the old ladies when it snows.
Like looking at a fun house mirror, America saw a reflection of itself distorted by time yet true today. The Iraq war is like Vietnam: O'Neill and his comrades, decorated veterans, pointed out the similarities.
The Media: The Swift Vets prompted a reexamination of the role of the media in undermining national will. The 1968 Tet Offensive, a US victory, was proclaimed a disaster by Walter Cronkite: "For it seems now more certain than ever that the bloody experience of Vietnam is to end in a stalemate."
Cronkite's pessimistic analysis is similar to the current media's declaration of quagmire two weeks into the Afghan War and at the first dust storm in Iraq. CBS's Harry Smith, like many of his colleagues, believes "were sinking deeper into the sand in Iraq." Now like then, some prominent journalists are champions of failure.
The Policy: In time, the once discredited domino theory gained new legitimacy when clusters of countries tipped to democracy, 120 in 40 years, while Indochina and the Middle East remained enclaves of brutal authoritarianism.
It became clear that the modern fascism of Wahabbism and Diobandism is spawned in repressive states, that terrorism has less to do with economic poverty than with political poverty. A free Iraq for a safer America is a statement that has credibility in the 21st century.
The Aftermath: In a 1971 debate with John ONeill, Kerry discussed his proposed policy: I realize that there would be certain political assassinations, and that might take place . then I think to talk about four or five thousand people is lunacy in terms of the overall argument. There were a hundred thousand immediate political assassinations.
A million died. A million fled. A million were imprisoned. These were the civilians American soldiers were working to protect, the Communism they were fighting to destroy.
The Hard Left, urging a quick exit from Iraq, appears to have as little regard for the Iraqis who stand with the US today. After reviewing the aftermath of withdrawal from Vietnam, others renewed their determination to prevail in Iraq.
Recently, pundits asked: "Why are we refighting the Vietnam War when there's a real war on?" America is coming to see one war, from World War One to Iraq War, an ongoing battle for the continued existence of America, in defense of the democratic political system. A wiser America has incorporated the lessons of Vietnam and is not swayed by the media bias, understanding both the Iraq policy and the consequences of its abandonment. The Vietnam Veterans deserve the same place of honor and gratitude as the doughboys and the flyboys. This is the new national consensus. We have the Swift Boat Veterans For Truth to thank for this new national unity, long over due.
Jane Novak is a New Jersey based political analyst and commentator in the US and Middle East. She maintains the blog armiesofliberation.com
Vietnams Ghosts by Ernest Lefever http://www.eppc.org/publications/pubID.95/pub_detail.asp
Patriotism and the lack thereof: Ragin Dave http://www.4rwws.blogspot.com/2004_09_05_4rwws_archive.html#109449619572899214
Walter Cronkite broadcast: http://www.richmond.edu/~ebolt/history398/Cronkite_1968.html
Media Research Center: http://www.mediaresearch.org/cyberalerts/2004/cyb20041110.asp#2
Harry Smith quote: http://www.mrc.org/notablequotables/2004/nq20041011.asp
Mackubin Thomas Owens "But Was It True" National Review Feb 23, 2004 pg 34-39
Kerry Quote: http://www2.swiftvets.com/index.php?topic=KerryONeill
You, and all who fought in Vietnam have been vindicated.
It made me ill when Kerry did that ludicrious hand salute and said, Reporting for Duty. The real heros are the ones who didn't backstab their country and fellow Vietnam vets. John O'Neill is sterling and Kerry pales in comparison. The Dems should give him up, he's used goods.
Im convinced that band of 250 saved the presidency from the movement that fought them in Vietnam. You know who you are. Thank you!
The Swifties once again answered their country's call to duty.
I think if it weren't for the Swifties, we would indeed have President Kerry -- shudder!
"The Vietnam Veterans deserve the same place of honor and gratitude as the doughboys and the flyboys. This is the new national consensus. We have the Swift Boat Veterans For Truth to thank for this new national unity, long over due."
Many thanks for posting.
Amen! I am so grateful to John O'neill and all the vets who worked so hard to get the TRUTH out and expose the true Kerry (and old media)...Still undermining our troops and our mission after all these years.
Celebrate November 2, 2004 -- May it always be known as Vietnam Veterans Victory Day!
In only post election distress syndrome were fatal!!
John O'Neill and his Band of Brothers:
We salute you.
Thank You SwiftVets. Nov 2 should be your holiday.
God bless the Swifties.
I shudder to think of what would have happened if not for the SwiftVets. We truly dodged a bullet 11-2 and we owe them our deepest gratitude.
Good article here. Thanks FairOpinion.
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