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RamboLiberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 08:46 AM
Original message
Now Repugs are going to trot out ex-Navy to ? Kerry's Medals
Edited on Wed Apr-07-04 08:47 AM by rmpalmer
Got this from Newsmax - I think it's good to get some intelligence on what the enemy's camp is planning. Time to trot out more about AWOL's sorry record I think. From Newsmax email:

Burkett: Navy Commanders to Cast Doubt on
Kerry's War Record

Several Navy officers who supervised Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry when he commanded a swift boat in Vietnam are preparing to publicly question his war record - including the circumstances under which he was awarded three Purple Hearts - a noted Vietnam War historian revealed this past weekend.

Burkett, whose book, "Stolen Valor," is considered to be the definitive history of of falsified Vietnam War claims, told WABC Radio's Steve Malzberg that Kerry's former commanders would allege that the top Democrat's Purple Hearts were awarded for "self-reported injuries that were virtually nonexistent."

Burkett's book was among the first to expose many of the phony claims made by John Kerry about U.S. war atrocities. In "Stolen Valor" Burkett also revealed that Kerry did not discard his war medals, as he claimed in the 1970s.

To get "Stolen Valor" FREE, Link Here.

"He never got a day of treatment, he never spent a day in a medical facility," Burkett said, commenting on Kerry's "wounds."

"These were all self-reported wounds, which you're going to hear from some swift boat guys in the future as to the nature of those wounds."

Burkett said he had personally spoken to the Navy commanders who were preparing to go public about Kerry's decorations.

"You're going to get quite a showing ," Burkett told Malzberg. "I don't know yet. They're trying to get it to be unanimous of every swift boat guy who ever served."

As to the timetable for the upcoming revelations, Burkett said that Kerry's superior officers "were still discussing that."

"You've got some major rallys being planned against John Kerry by Vietnam veterans on the mall, at the convention - this type of thing," he said. "And we're going to make America aware of John Kerry's military record."

This book is a must read for the presidential election.


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democrat in Tallahassee Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 08:57 AM
Response to Original message
1. and bush was where when kerry got his purple hearts?
just keep that in mind. kerry was in vietnam,bush was drinking in alabama
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gone fishing Donating Member (38 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 09:00 AM
Response to Reply #1
3. he was protecting texas
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liberalitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 09:07 AM
Response to Reply #3
7. He was protecting his bar stool....
occasionally flying sorteis into the head to liberate beers.
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stryker18 Donating Member (84 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 09:09 AM
Response to Reply #1
8. Bush was yelling "Beer run!"
when Kerry was leading his platoon in Vietnam AND being sprayed by Agent Orange.
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newyawker99 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 12:37 PM
Response to Reply #8
30. Hi stryker18!!
Welcome to DU!! :toast:
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gone fishing Donating Member (38 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 08:57 AM
Response to Original message
2. this is one thing that really
bugs me about kerry. it just doesn't make any sense ,4 months, three
self reported purple hearts, and he's out of country. i would like
to see the medical records covering those months. if he's going
to proclaim himself a war hero and talk about his band of brothers i believe he needs to clear this up!
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July Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 09:14 AM
Response to Reply #2
10. Why do you believe these people?
You can find out more details yourself by doing a little reading/googling. Also check out www.snopes.com on this topic; there's a pretty long discussion of Kerry's medals (basically debunking the critics' point of view).

This is petty bullshit, which is what the Republicans would prefer that we focus on (rather than Bush's record).
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hexola Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 09:21 AM
Response to Reply #2
13. Seems clear to me
What part doesn't make sense?

It's my understanding that - contrary to conventional wisdom - Purple Hearts are not really a big, big deal in the world of military decoration. You would get one for just about any injury that occured in the theatre. So - let's not make too much about these medals. It's not like the guy got the Congressional Medal of Honor! The bar is pretty low when it comes to Purple Hearts.

And don't fall for the "only four months" routine...Kerry was in the Navy for 4 years (66-70) and did 2 tours of duty.

They love to throw in that "4 months" thing to make it sound like Kerry joined the Navy - went to Nam for 4 months and got a discharge...as if he didn't actually serve....
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gone fishing Donating Member (38 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 10:06 AM
Response to Reply #13
20. two tours?
i've only heard about one. on his first tour was he actually in country?
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hexola Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 12:39 PM
Response to Reply #20
32. First Tour...according to JK.com...
June 8, 1967 – Kerry reports to USS Gridley-serves in several capacities

February 9, 1968 – USS Gridley departs for a Western Pacific (WESTPAC) deployment, to engage in operations in support of the Vietnam War. Ship spends time in the Gulf of Tonkin off North Vietnam, at Subic Bay in the Philippines and in Wellington, New Zealand

February 10, 1968 – Kerry requests duty in Vietnam He lists his first preference for a position as an officer in charge of a Swift Boat (designated PCF for Patrol Craft Fast), his second as an officer in a patrol boat (designated PBR, for Patrol Boat River) squadron

May 27, 1968 – USS Gridley sets sail for the US
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Media_Lies_Daily Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 12:50 PM
Response to Reply #20
34. On his first tour in the Vietnam theater Kerry served aboard ship...
...and if you have a problem with Kerry being acknowledged as a Vietnam War vet based on that tour alone, you're going to have to answer to a lot of pissed off Vietnam War Navy vets.

He then VOLUNTEERED for Swift Boat duty, and did indeed earn the awards that he was given.

<http://www.johnkerry.com/communities/veterans/service.h... >

FIRST TOUR:

"June 8, 1967 – Kerry reports to USS Gridley-serves in several capacities

February 9, 1968 – USS Gridley departs for a Western Pacific (WESTPAC) deployment, to engage in operations in support of the Vietnam War. Ship spends time in the Gulf of Tonkin off North Vietnam, at Subic Bay in the Philippines and in Wellington, New Zealand

February 10, 1968 – Kerry requests duty in Vietnam He lists his first preference for a position as an officer in charge of a Swift Boat (designated PCF for Patrol Craft Fast), his second as an officer in a patrol boat (designated PBR, for Patrol Boat River) squadron

May 27, 1968 – USS Gridley sets sail for the US

June 6, 1968 – Kerry arrives in Long Beach the day after Senator Robert F. Kennedy is killed in Los Angeles

June 16, 1968 – Kerry promoted to Lieutenant, Junior Grade"

TRAINING BETWEEN COMMANDS

"July 20, 1968 – Kerry leaves Gridley for specialized training at the Naval Amphibious Base in Coronado, CA in preparation for service as commander of a Swift Boat. These unarmored, but heavily armed, fifty foot aluminum hulled patrol boats depended on speed and agility when engaging the enemy."

SECOND TOUR:

"November 17, 1968 – Upon completion of his training, Kerry reports for duty to Coastal Squadron 1, Coastal Division 14, Cam Ranh Bay, South Vietnam.

December 1968 through January 1969 – Kerry commands PCF-44

December 2, 1968 – Kerry experiences first intense combat; receives first combat related injury.

December 6, 1968 – Kerry moved to Coastal Division 11 at An Thoi on Phu Quoc Island

December 13, 1968 – Kerry moved to Coastal Division 13, Cam Ranh Bay

December 24, 1968 – Kerry involved in combat during the Christmas Eve truce of 1968. The truce was three minutes old when mortar fire exploded around Lieutenant Kerry and his five-man crew. Reacting swiftly, John Kerry and his crew silenced the machine gun nest

January 22, 1969 – Kerry and other Swift boat commanders travel to Saigon for meeting with Adm. Elmo Zumwalt, Commander Naval Forces Vietnam (COMNAVFORV), and Gen. Creighton Abrams, Commander United States Military Assistance Command Vietnam (COMUSMACV)

Late January, 1969 – Kerry joined his 5 man crew on PCF-94

Late January through Early March, 1969 – Starting in late January 1969, this crew completed 18 missions over an intense and dangerous 48 days, almost all of them in the dense jungles of the Mekong Delta. Kerry's crew included engineman Eugene Thorson, later an Iowa cement mason; David Alston, then the crew's only African-American and today a minister in South Carolina; petty officer Del Sandusky of Illinois; rear gunner and quartermaster Michael Medeiros of California; and the late Tom Belodeau, who joined the crew fresh out of Chelmsford High School in Massachusetts. Others rotated in and out of the crew. The most intense action came during an extraordinary eight days of more than 10 firefights, remembered by Kerry's crew as the "days of hell."

February 20, 1969 – Kerry and crew involved in combat; Kerry receives second combat injury – Kerry earned his second Purple Heart after sustaining a shrapnel wound in his left thigh.

February 28, 1969 – For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action while serving with Coastal Division ELEVEN engaged in armed conflict with Viet Cong insurgents in An Xuyen Province, Republic of Vietnam, on 28 February 1969. Lieutenant (junior grade) Kerry was serving as Officer in Charge of Patrol Craft Fast 94 and Officer in Tactical Command of a three-boat mission. As the force approached the target area on the narrow Dong Cung River, all units came under intense automatic weapons and small arms fire from an entrenched enemy force less than fifty-feet away. Unhesitatingly, Lieutenant (junior grade) Kerry ordered his boat to attack as all units opened fire and beached directly in front of the enemy ambushers. The daring and courageous tactic surprised the enemy and succeeded in routing a score of enemy soldiers. The PCF gunners captured many enemy weapons in the battle that followed. On a request from U.S. Army advisors ashore, Lieutenant (junior grade) Kerry ordered PCFs 94 and 23 further up river to suppress enemy sniper fire. After proceeding approximately eight hundred yards, the boats again were taken under fire from a heavily foliated area and B-40 rocket exploded close aboard PCF-94; with utter disregard for his own safety and the enemy rockets, he again ordered a charge on the enemy, beached his boat only ten feet from the VC rocket position, and personally led a landing party ashore in pursuit of the enemy. Upon sweeping the area an immediate search uncovered an enemy rest and supply area which was destroyed. The extraordinary daring and personal courage of Lieutenant (junior grade) Kerry in attacking a numerically superior force in the face of intense fire were responsible for the highly successful mission. His actions were in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.

March 13, 1969 – For heroic achievement while serving with Coastal Division ELEVEN engaged in armed conflict with Viet Cong communist aggressors in An Xuyen Province, Republic of Vietnam, on 13 March 1969. Lieutenant (junior grade) Kerry was serving as Officer in Charge of Patrol Craft Fast 94, one of five boats conducting a SEA Lords operation in the Bay Hap River. While exiting the river, a mine detonated under another Inshore Patrol Craft and almost simultaneously, another mine detonated wounding Lieutenant (junior grade) Kerry in the right arm. In addition, all units began receiving small arms and automatic weapons fire from the river banks. When Lieutenant (junior grade) Kerry discovered he had a man overboard, he returned upriver to assist. The man in the water was receiving sniper fire from both banks. Lieutenant (junior grade) Kerry directed his gunners to provide suppressing fire, while from an exposed position on the bow, his arm bleeding and in pain and with disregard for his safety, he pulled the man aboard. Lieutenant (junior grade) Kerry then directed his boat to return and assist the other damaged boat to safety. Lieutenant (junior grade) Kerry’s calmness, professionalism and great personal courage under fire were in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service. Lieutenant (junior grade) Kerry is authorized to wear the Combat “V”.

March 17, 1969 – The policy of Coastal Squadron One, the swift boat command, was to send home any individual who is wounded three times in action. After sustaining his third wound from enemy action in Vietnam, Kerry was granted relief under this policy.

Early April, 1969 – Kerry departs Vietnam"


And what was Junior doing during this particular period of time?

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BOSSHOG Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 09:22 AM
Response to Reply #2
15. What's to clear up?
He went to war and was there four months. How long must one be in harm's way to be wounded? One can receive a purple heart without being hospitalized. Kerry is not proclaming himself a war hero. There is nothing that needs to be cleared up. Newsmax has gotten ahold of a bunch of disgruntled neocons who once served in the Navy and who do not like Kerry's politics. Is that clear enough for you? However, I believe this little episode is reason enough to drag bush's splended record back before the public's eye.

Let me suggest you go to Fallujah for "just four months." The value of perspective - Priceless.
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sandnsea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 10:09 AM
Response to Reply #2
23. Draft dodgers should smear war records?
By what logic does an Administration without one member who even served have the audacity to smear a war veteran's record? And why would you buy into it? It can't think of anything much lower than that, I really can't.
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EV1Ltimm Donating Member (831 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-08-04 08:30 AM
Response to Reply #2
39. is taking several pieces of shrapnel for your country
not giving enough?

i'm interested in knowing to what extent kerry should have gone in order for you to feel more comfortable in his endeavors
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underpants Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 09:05 AM
Response to Original message
4. I heard this last year
I thought it had gone away but they were probably just testing it with focus groups back then.

I don't think a lot of people are going to like the questioning of medals won in war and it opens up the can of worms that is W's record. Just my opinion.
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liberalitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 09:05 AM
Response to Original message
5. It seems as though we would have heard more about...
this before now. For many reasons here are
1) Kerry was on one of Nixon's many "Enemies" lists.... if there was any question.... they would have exposed him while he was dissing them on the Hill.
2) Let's see how many times has he run for public office?.... And as many campaigns he has run, none of his opponents has ever "outted" him.

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papau Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 09:22 AM
Response to Reply #5
14. Nixon would have exposed - and 25 years of politics/media would have
shouted this out if true.

The Murdoch/Scafie slime machine is dragging a few hundred dollars bills past some GOP leaning vets and finding out who wants to be a whore.

My guess is they will find many whores amongst the GOP Vets - as in why should they be different from the media whores and the Grover Norquist whores and the WSJ whores - indeed the rest of the GOP.

Shrapnel scratches as I recall were patch and go if possible - an MD opinion was only needed if you tried for a 10% disability pension.

So not running back for medical help is bad, losing 3 limbs to a mistake at the front by a comrade is your bad because it was not in combat from the enemy.... there are so many GOP rules the media must learn for this election.

But for a few dollars I am sure the media whores will give it their best effort.
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gone fishing Donating Member (38 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 10:09 AM
Response to Reply #5
22. he wasn't running against the rove machine
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Jackpine Radical Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 10:50 AM
Response to Reply #22
27. Right.
With Roveco, truth is a handy accessory in a story if it happens to be on your side, but there's no problems in dispensing with it when it's inconvenient.
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Media_Lies_Daily Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 12:54 PM
Response to Reply #22
35. The Rove "machine" seems to missing on more than one cylinder lately.....
...I wonder if he will be one of those indicted for exposing Valerie Plame?
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truthspeaker Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 09:06 AM
Response to Original message
6. at least he bothered to show up
that's more than Bush can say.

But I'm pretty skeptical of this. It seems to me I've heard an unearned medals story about Kerry before that turned out to be bunk.
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KittyWampus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 09:11 AM
Response to Original message
9. Sounds Like Partisan Navy Vets Using Their Relationship With A Veteran
for financial gain.

Will they donate their profits from the book to Viet Nam Vet groups?

There is a Potemkin Website set up to disseminate this garbage which has been debunked.

Kerry was wounded three times and obviously got the three medals.

Deal with it Freepers.

There are MORE Vets who will stand up and testify for Kerry than the assholes who are opportunistically trying to make a buck off their having served in Viet Nam.

Disgusting.
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TNOE Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 09:15 AM
Response to Original message
11. Is there NOBODY that
the Repubs, Bush* et al and their band of theives and crooks won't try to smear? Amazing. This will no doubt backfire just as their smear on Richard Clarke, Max Cleland and others have. They have NO shame, none. Bush* would not have survived a week in Vietnam and he knows it.
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Bandit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 09:17 AM
Response to Original message
12. If they were Kerry's Commanders then they are the ones that awarded
any and all medals. Kerry did not award himself any medals. Awards come from a superior officer. If they say they awarded him for something he didn't deserve they are condemning no one but themselves. I doubt many will want to do that. anyone who comes out and says Kerry didn't deserve these awards must have a very valid explanation. Remember Senator Kerry has most of the men who served with him to vouch for his valor. I'd be interested to see who will vouch for these "Commanders".
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papau Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 09:23 AM
Response to Reply #12
16. Excellent point
:-)
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Media_Lies_Daily Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 12:55 PM
Response to Reply #12
36. Bingo...right square on the head.
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KharmaTrain Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 09:27 AM
Response to Original message
17. Reality Check: Nixon's The One!
He's the one who pinned that medal on Lt. Kerry. It was his White House that put this young man on the "Enemies List" for speaking out against the war Bunnypants had daddy buy his way out of.

If there was any questions about Kerry's medals or his service, wouldn't this have come out at the time; considering in 1971, Nixon's destroy operation was going at full tilt (paging John Dean), and Kerry had come forward as a spokesman for the anti-war movement. There's those Nixon tapes of him discussing Kerry with either Halderman or some other henchmen and was looking for ways to discredit him.

Of course there were other times to challenge the Senator's record as well, but why bother when you can distort and fabricate and then have the "mainstream" media pick it up as some sort of factual story.

The wingnuts are in full-spin damage control. Kerry strips the "weak on defense" card from the deck and this regime's past and current military record are becoming very big liabilities. Damn right they're gonna do all they can (drag $$$ across more trailer parks anyone???) to smear Kerry and his military past.

They need to tar him as a "traitor"...re-ignite the divisions of Vietnam...yet these morons fail to remember that by 1971 being anti war was "cool" and there were millions of us then, as now (and most of us are still very loyal Democrats) who admire what Kerry did then. A lot more of us than them.
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hexola Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 09:30 AM
Response to Original message
18. Can we get a list of Purple Hearts awarded in the Iraq war, so far...?
It would be interesting to see if any Soldier has been able to rack up a similar number of Purple Hearts in the same amount of time in Iraq. If so - that would speak volumes. And make it very hard for military brass to question Kerry without impuning soldiers on the ground in Iraq.
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Bandit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 11:11 AM
Response to Reply #18
28. No comparrison.
Try the Korean War or WW II. Iraq is only a scuffle compared to Vietnam.
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hexola Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 12:44 PM
Response to Reply #28
33. Understood...but we might find that...
..it's not that uncommon for soldiers rack up 3 purple hearts in 4 months...
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Commendatori Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 09:34 AM
Response to Original message
19. Maybe it's just me, but
I think this is good news. The Repugs wouldn't be doing this if they weren't scared of Kerry. No matter which way you slice it, Kerry was in Vietnam while Bush was slurping down chicken fried steak in Texas.

I've said it elsewhere on this board and I'll say it again: I think Kerry will win realtively easily in November.
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sangh0 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 10:08 AM
Response to Reply #19
21. Pigs only cry
when they're hurt
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newyawker99 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 12:38 PM
Response to Reply #19
31. Hi BlueOysterDemocrat!!
Welcome to DU!! :toast:
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Commendatori Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-08-04 08:25 AM
Response to Reply #31
38. Thanks, newyawker99
I think I'll like it here :)
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leesa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 10:25 AM
Response to Original message
24. So What? Bush was AWOL.
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Blasphemer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 10:37 AM
Response to Original message
25. I don't believe a word of it...
Afterall, Karen Hughes says that Bush is above personally attacking his opponents and Gosh... she's just so darn trustworthy... :evilgrin:

Seriously, I agree about the AWOL issue. They would be fools to make Vietnam war service an issue. The AWOL story got legs again during the Dem primaries but we haven't heard much about it lately. If they want to go there, it's to their own detriment.
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PsN2Wind Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 10:38 AM
Response to Original message
26. Kerry needs to get out in front of this
by asking the question, " how is it that the Bush administration is able to find all these people to question my service in Viet Nam, but are unable to find anyone that can prove he was where he was supposed to be his last year plus of Guard duty"?
If the Kerry team doesn't become more proactive and continues to lay back, they are going to blow this thing.
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GoldenOldie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 11:22 AM
Response to Reply #26
29. Kerry's Commanding Officer's????
I well remember how many of these "Commanding Officer's" followed their orders from the Pentagon on lowballing the actual deaths. How many of Kerry's "Commanding Officer's" were sitting State-side, or in an opulent office in Saigon??? How many of Kerry's "Commanding Officer's", outright lied in their official reports to DOD and Congress. Kerry should not have to respond to these "Commanding Officer's" but they themselves should be questioned on which one of them approved his medals and just where were they themselves situated during the Vietnam era. We all know Georgie went AWOL/deserted and one of his "Commanding Officer's" signed off on his DD-214.
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Media_Lies_Daily Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-07-04 12:57 PM
Response to Reply #29
37. Kerry reported directly to officers that were also located in Vietnam...
...this story is going to fly about as well as a lead balloon.
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