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“I don’t stand by the genocide, I think those were the words of an angry young man,” Kerry responded. And the issue was dropped.
BUT THERE IS NO applicable synonym for genocide. If Kerry is permitted to write it off as a poor choice of words, then his whole testimony before the Fulbright Committee, his every anti-war speech, becomes a lie. And yet, the section concludes limply that “Kerry should list the specifics of what he saw,” so that it can be investigated. “If John Kerry did not commit war crimes in Vietnam, then why is he lying?” the authors ask.
This is an insufficient condemnation if one of the more gruesome passages in the book turns out to be true. That is, one night in January 1969, Kerry and crew were patrolling the banks of the Cua Lon River when all hell descended. Kerry told quasi-official biographer Douglas Brinkley that many minutes of silent patrol had gone by when someone yelled, “Sampan off the port bow!”:
“Everybody froze and we slowed the engines quickly. But the sampan was already by us and wasn’t stopping. It was past curfew and nothing was allowed in the river. I told the gunner to fire a few warning shots and in the confusion all guns opened up. We moved in on the sampan, and taking one of the battle lanterns off the bulkhead shone it on the silhouette of the craft that was now dead in the water.”
But the presence of eyewitnesses betrays Kerry’s self-serving remake of the incident. According to gunner Steve Gardner, who “sat above Kerry on the double .50-caliber mount that night,” Kerry stayed in the pilothouse during the incident. Kerry failed to spot the sampan on radar and give warning; he didn’t join the crew when they heard an engine noise and saw the boat; he wasn’t there when they threw the PFC lights on; he did not order them to fire warning shots; and he wasn’t there when Gardner ordered the craft to stop.
What happened was that Gardner, spooked and in the absence of a commanding officer, believed that one of the occupants of the boat was reaching for a weapon. He opened up, as did others, killing a man and, unintentionally, his child. The gunshots finally roused Kerry who “ordered the crew to cease fire and then threatened them.”
The authors state this Kerry’s failure to spot the boat on radar is “hard to understand.” Harder still to comprehend is Kerry’s “absence as the officer in charge during the critical part of the episode.” This absence, one is compelled to repeat, resulted in the death of a two-year old child. But, as O’Neill and Corsi explain, that’s not all:
Kerry avoided any problem by filing an after action report in which the dead child simply disappeared from the record and was replaced by a fleeing squad of Viet Cong, some likely killed by Kerry. A terrible human tragedy was converted by another Kerry lie into another sterling triumph by the young war hero.
It’s hard to believe this could be the man the Democrats have nominated for as their candidate for President of the United States.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?