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Reply #12: Swifts were independent group of vets, not Bush campaign - [View All]

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blm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jun-27-06 06:50 PM
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12. Swifts were independent group of vets, not Bush campaign -
Edited on Tue Jun-27-06 07:10 PM by blm
They attacked Kerry's service record.

When Delay and Lott attcaked Kerry in 2003 he nailed them much like Webb did, but to a reporter.

Swiftboating is different than confrontations between campaigns.

Of course we know that swifts were really working for Rove, but no way to prove it the first day.

Kerry would have loved to make it against Bush and Rove. It's EASY to attack chickenhawks - swifting, using men who did serve, is a whole other circumstance. GOPs learned that you can't take real vets on directly - you have to do it using other vets to make it work.

Joe Conason: 'Kerry fires back at G.O.P. snipers'
Posted on Wednesday, March 06 @ 09:37:02 EST
This article has been read 1465 times.
By Joe Conason, New York Observer

We are living in a time when scoundrels seek to bully the loyal opposition and demonize all dissent for their own advancement. Thats why certain Republican politicians and pundits have assaulted Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle and other Democrats in terms usually reserved for foreign and domestic enemies.

What has been even more troubling than this ugly campaign, however, is the passivity of those who are its targets.

Mr. Daschle and his colleagues have remained inert during recent weeks and months, while their adversaries compared him with Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein and accused him of giving "aid and comfort" to the nations enemies. They have stood by in silence while authoritarian propaganda emanated from Republican fax machines and spread across the country. Theyve allowed the South Dakota Democrat, an Air Force veteran and bioterror target, to be taunted like a traitor by Rush Limbaugh, Dick Cheney, Karl Rove and other tough-talkers who avoided military service as if it were anthrax.


So it was refreshing to hear at last from a patriot who found his voice and addressed the Republican Congressional leadership in the tone that they deserve. The first Democrat to speak up was, unsurprisingly, a Senator who has been both a war hero and a war protester.

On March 2, John Kerry took the podium at a political dinner in New Hampshire to defend Mr. Daschle, a colleague who is likely to become his rival for their partys Presidential nomination. What the Massachusetts Senator said about Messrs. Lott and DeLayand, by implication, about all the would-be White House enforcersdeserved more attention than a single article in his hometown paper, The Boston Globe.

"Let me be clear tonight to Senator Lott and to Tom DeLay: One of the lessons that I learned in Vietnama war they did not have to endureand one of the basic vows of commitment that I made to myself, was that if I ever reached a position of responsibility, I would never stop asking questions that make a democracy strong," he told the audience of New Hampshire Democrats, whose startled murmurs quickly erupted into a standing ovation.

"Those who try to stifle the vibrancy of our democracy and shield policies from scrutiny behind a false cloak of patriotism miss the real value of what our troops defend and how we best defend our troops," he continued. "We will ask questions, and we will defend our democracy."

A combat veteran who received three Purple Hearts, a Bronze Star and a Silver Star in two Navy toursand who later founded Vietnam Veterans Against the WarMr. Kerry has ample stature to challenge the character assassins and commissars of the far right. The day after the Concord dinner, he didnt hesitate to reiterate his rebuke, adding the name of another Southern-fried chicken hawk.

"My message to Trent Lott and Tom Delay and Dick Armeyeach of whom did not have to endure the war in Vietnam the lesson I learned in that war is, the best way to defend American democracy and our soldiers is to ask the right questions at the right time."

Suddenly, it was the Republicans who had nothing to say.

You may reach Joe Conason via email at: .

Reprinted from The New York Observer:
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