Memeorandum


Powered by TypePad

« Did The Band of Brothers Change Their Tune? | Main | Russert And Blitzer »

May 29, 2006

TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d83451b2aa69e200d83460b58469e2

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Enough With The "Magic Hat":

» Catching up after a long weekend ... or forget and forgive is not an option from Squiggler
The holiday weekend is over and many have returned to work with sunburned faces and bellies full of barbeque and potato salad, fresh strawberries and corn on the cob. For me, the weekend was emotional as I continued to read and link all the wonderful t... [Read More]

» Lying About Lying About Lying from Small Town Veteran
Lying About Lying About LyingDafydd ab Hugh The New York Times has taken upon itself the man-sized task of resurrecting Sen. John F. Kerry (D-MA, 95%) from the political graveyard... and the paper has decided that the best way to [Read More]

» Lying About Lying About Lying from Small Town Veteran
Lying About Lying About LyingDafydd ab Hugh The New York Times has taken upon itself the man-sized task of resurrecting Sen. John F. Kerry (D-MA, 95%) from the political graveyard... and the paper has decided that the best way to [Read More]

Comments

MayBee

TM- You are right. Kerry's the one that chose to give the details (on multiple occasions), and Kerry is the one that has to deal with whether people believe him when the details don't pan out. The NYTs shouldn't be in the business of creating stories for him.

Perhaps Kerry meant to say he was there within 24 business hours of Christmas. Apparently, 24 business hours can be a very, very long time.

HerbieWilkers

Magic Hat?

Dave says since he has me checking the lefty websites I have to wear my new Magic Hat. He says it'll help me blend in, so to speak. Frankly I find it embarrassing.

I forgave him though because he's making us steaks for Memorial Day and its a beautiful early summer day, the flowers are blooming. I'm trying to learn the proper bone chewing methods. Plus I'm just a patriotic kinda hound.

patch

Come on Tom, you know better than this:

"...if Kerry can produce the hat and the CIA guy, he wins..."

Senator Kerry couldn't possibly do something like expose a top secret undercover covert classified agent/operative. If he did, there would be a Special Prosecutor appointed to investigate such an action.

michael

I hope the truth will come out. So far what's new in the Kerry version seems to be clearer use of Ward Churchill's referencing and history creating methodology. The release of Kerry's Navy records?

JamesH

The issue isn't whether or not Kerry was a war hero or served more bravely than GWB. It seems to me that at least some of his medals were well earned. The issue is whether or not John Kerry is honest and trustworthy. There the record is much more cloudy. That's why Christmas in Cambodia fits in with "I was for it before I voted against it".

jerry

Kerry is a decent man and politician, and a respectable veteran, who cares about this crap other than political extremists?

kim

Were he a respectable veteran and a decent politician, he'd have released his records in August '04 and Joe Wilson would be the Ambassador to France, today.
=====================================

ed

Hmmm.

Let's not forget Alston.

With the absolutely clear example of Alston there is definitive evidence that Kerry is more than capable of using other veterans to bolster his case ... regardless of the veracity of their stories.

It's extremely clear that Kerry is willing to use outright lies to prove himself, and that makes ALL such testimony suspect.

Tom Maguire

Let's not forget Alston.

Good point - I had a bit of Postus Interruptus, but Alston is there now.

MayBee

jerry- apparently Kerry and the NYTs care mightily about "this crap". There was no provocation to publish this article.

SPQR

Jerry,
"Winter Soldier" says you don't know what you are talking about.

sammysmall

I don't care to rehash any of this again. Its just the gathering of more fuzzy recollections made crystal clear in the political arena.

Unless Kerry immediately openly releases his total military records and his notes and references used by Brinkley, this is a waste of time. That should be the only response used to counter Kerry's new spin.

jerry

I can see Kerry still wanting to fight his attackers/smearers, good for the NYT to join him.

It's true I don't waste my time learning the intricately misleading details of this story, I reserve that luxury to developing a selective understanding of the Plame case.

Happy Memorial Day.

Florence Schmieg

John Kerry always made me uncomfortable. Who, in the middle of a combat zone, brings a movie camera and recreates "battle scenes" showing him bravely marching, etc? It's creepy. He has too much invested in this "John Kerry, war hero" stuff. Most veterans of wars just want to forget about the experience, not revel in it. Couple that with what he did when he returned and it is just unsettling.

richard mcenroe

"

Kerry is a decent man and politician, and a respectable veteran, who cares about this crap other than political extremists?

Posted by: jerry | "

Proving that you know abosolutely nothing about his marital history, his business dealings, his senatorial career or his military 'history'.

What exactly was the point of that post?

Jim in Chicago
who cares about this crap other than political extremists?

Translation: call off your on-bringers.

RLS

Kerry is a decent man and politician, and a respectable veteran, who cares about this crap other than political extremists?

Kerry is a character deficient charlatan who threw his fellow vets over a cliff in order to advance his political aspirations.

Read about "Winter Soldier".

Can you honestly say that you would want someone to be CinC of the military who took his medals and threw them away? Someone who has no regard or respect for the millions who have served and earned medals for that service?

When you support Kerry - that is what you are supporting.

capitano

During the airstrikes in Afghan. and Iraq, I remember Pentagon reporters combing the briefings for the slightest discrepancy.

"Colonel, yesterday you reported the coalition had flown a gazillion sorties against a bazillion targets, but our staff was up all night reconstructing the daily reports and we come up with a gazillion and one sorties. Which is it, sir?

Thank goodness we can count on the press to ferret out these inconsistencies with Kerry's revised story, which was never about Cambodia or hats. It was about whether Kerry lied on the floor of the Senate to enhance his standing and credibility on the pending issue.

And that is a matter that goes directly to his fitness for President. You would think all the "Bush Lied" folks would agree, no?

ajacksonian

Well, I am not a photo expert, nor do I play one on the net. I just like looking at pictures and their artifacts, but grayscale hasn't been my interest or forte.

Still, I did my 20 minute analysis and have yet to figure out how to get blogger to take the full resolution image that I downloaded from the NYT and then did a side-by-side markup. Probably need a real picture hosting service for it, but it is not that large a file... *sigh*

For the PH for the first 'wound', it has always been a problem that it msotly likely fits in the 'scratch' categoy, with bandages from keeping it from getting infected in a the tropical climate. So, play up the gauze, play down the lack of bleeding or wound seepage. So the top photo just shows that it wasn't very much. A lot of men going through the jungles in WWII or in rugged terrain with nasty underbrush probably get loads similar and never apply for a medal while it was received under enemy fire.

The next two look posed. And I have particular problems with the dead body photo and a few anomolies here and there on it. I am not an expert in such things, but it does look like something was removed or changed in at least a few areas. Some could be shadow tricks, but others cannot be due to lack of tonal continuity with the rest of the image. And some strangeness with the right arm, but can't say for sure. A real expert can tell you. Stuff lots worse got by censors and if the photo stayed in his personal posession, they probably never even know it existed, so I doubt it was censored and then restored. Beyond that, nice change of clothes for Mr. Kerry. I assume he did that on the Swift Boat... carry a new set of pants and such, freshen up, look unsweaty...

Basically, until the hi-res images from the original scan are produced, complete with scanner metadata, I will not trust them. Sad to say that is what it has come down to in my attitude towards Mr. Kerry. If it was any other Vet who just pulled the shoebox down to show me some photos of his time there, I wouldn't question it. By evading and impugning, Mr. Kerry has lost all credability on everything he does with me.

Basically, download the NYT image if it is still around and look for yourself. Irfanview.com has a nice and free little image viewer that does a bit more than just viewing. No need for p-shop...

Kazman

Go, TM, go!!!
Don't want to beat Kerry like a rented mule? You're doing a fine job on his supporters!!!
-----
The NYT is truly insane. I don't know how they can write an article like that while ignoring an enormous amount of truth.
They also decided to print a puff piece on a guy with $90,000 in his freezer- because he has a "D" next to his name.
Their stock chart looks ugly, they are facing downgrades from Wall St., and they keep doing the same thing, expecting to get a different result.
Kind of like Ketchup boy!!

Neo

It's amazing how after multiple tellings of the "Christmas in Cambodia" story, Kerry conveniently has discovered an entry in his 1969 log: "Feb. 12: 0800 run to Cambodia."

Even the Greek Orthodox church doesn't have Christmas that late.

Larry (USAF ret)

"Kerry is a decent man and politician, and a respectable veteran, who cares about this crap other than political extremists?" Posted by: jerry | May 29, 2006 at 07:46 AM


Even if we give Kerry full credit for his combat service, it doesn't excuse his despicable behavior on return stateside: 1) Lying to congress about war crimes. 2) Attending Winter Soldier meetings where they discussed assassinating elected officials. 3) Meeting not once, but twice , with representatives of the enemy while still a commissioned USN officer. These documented acts reveal where his sympathies lie. Bush may be the lesser of two evils, but Kerry is actually evil.


Patrick R. Sullivan

' I don't care if he was in Cambodia for Valentine's Day, St. Patrick's Day, or the Chinese New Year.'

January 2005 on Meet the Press he told Tim Russert:

MR. RUSSERT: And you have a hat that the CIA agent gave you?

'SEN. KERRY: I still have the hat that he gave me, and I hope the guy would come out of the woodwork and say, "I'm the guy who went up with John Kerry. We delivered weapons to the Khmer Rouge on the coastline of Cambodia." We went out of Ha Tien, which is right in Vietnam. We went north up into the border. And I have some photographs of that, and that's what we did. So, you know, the two were jumbled together, but we were on the Cambodian border on Christmas Eve, absolutely.'

Now he's claiming to have been 35 miles (on a river) from the border on Christmas Eve. He was stationed at Cam Ranh Bay on the East Coast of Vietnam in December 1968.

In February '69 he was working from an island in the Gulf of Thailand on the western side of Vietnam. Ha Tien is almost on the border between the two countries. Notice in the MTP quote he's claiming to have off-loaded weapons (to our enemies) on the coastline of Cambodia.

Coastline...river. Details, details.

PeterUK

Florence,
Kerry even had a picture taken with the victim

PeterUK

ajacksonian,
Sorry,I duplicated your post,nicely done by the way.
One thing that puzzles me,why should a "decent" man have his picture taken with a man he has killed.it is not as if he was a trophy.

Anonymous

Why was John Kerry running guns to the Khmer Rouge?

Has he 'corrected' that yet?

It was a 'CIA man' that gave him the hat.

It was Special Forces that gave him the hat.

Everytime he opens his mouth on this he screws up.

Daddy

You guys are all nuts. Kerry was definitely in Cambodia in Christmas in 1968. The full story is in a secret transcript in Lawrence O'Donnel's coat pocket, right there next to the list of the 22 other guys Fitz is gonna' indict before last Christmas. Oh ye of little faith.

Sara (The Squiggler)

Kerry is a decent man and politician, and a respectable veteran, who cares about this crap other than political extremists?

Who cares? I care. And I'm not an extremist. I was the spouse of a Vet who spent 15 months at the Mekong Delta, attached to the Mobile Riverine Force, at the same time that Kerry only had to spend 4 months. My Vet earned his medals and he displays them proudly to this day. He didn't throw them away.

I am also the mother of a son who at the age of 7 was berated by his teacher and teased by his classmates after Kerry's "Winter Soldier" shameful conduct and testamony in 1971-72. His teacher told him, "God doesn't listen to prayers for baby killers" referring to my son's Daddy, who at that very time was serving yet another combat tour. I don't know how to relate what those times were like to those who weren't there or who can't relate to what we as active duty service families suffered because of John Kerry and his army of unwashed misfits and miscreants. It was a horrible time that we thought we'd consigned to our trash pits of memory until he stood and "reported for duty."

It sickens me to see the blindness about this man. It sickens me to see how many have no idea what it was like to be a Vietnam Vet or the family of one. We were reviled. We were denied housing and employment. We had garbage dumped on us. While you all who make these statements like Jerry's or many others I've read in the various threads TM has up on this subject, I shake and shudder as I relive memories I had hoped would never have to be thought of again. The vileness of John Kerry is beyond comprehension. I, for one, can never forgive what he did in 1971-72 and I am not alone. We are not extremists, we are mad and determined to make sure that John Kerry does not get away with it a 2nd time.

ajacksonian

PeterUK - I really hate getting into motives, but actions do have meaning. Mr. Kerry brought cameras, both still and motion, with him to capture and document his activities and then use same to enhance his image as a soldier that went to Vietnam who could then gain credibility through same with the anti-war movement. I do not like those actions. His own words on 'atrocities' he saw mean that he should have put himself up for investigation while serving. The fact that he did not do so speaks much to his character. Claiming that 'others were doing the same' only points out the lack of character for not going with the herd mentality and speaking out while in service. He did not do that. I see a definitive lack of him pushing for investigations when he was in-service and could have done the most good to the Nation if they were true. Instead he waits until such accusations can do the most good for HIM.

I thank you for your kind words, but my abilities are limited having only 2D terrain and feature extraction training and use in my past. That was over a decade ago. I was never trained in forensic analysis, but oddities still pop up when you look at an image... those oddities helped gain knowledge from terrain to explain what was going on in 3 dimensions looking at 2 dimensional imagery. It is trying to tell me something and I do not know what. A likely explanation is something previously on top of the image which pulled off some of it when removed. But something to do that and simultaneously add oddities back into those areas strains credulity, even for a scan of paper. If this was a scan from film, neither of those would fit, either, without some sort of manual or digital retouching. What I am able to post was downsampled by about 40%.

Mr. Kerry has had opportunity to clear the air fully with a full release of his documents and has not done so for years. By not doing so he casts doubt. By changing the story over time, he casts doubt. By having no ready reason how he can teleport with his swift boat and crew many 10s of miles on a holiday evening, he casts doubt. Instead of casting light, he casts shadows.

And I watch shadows very closely, lest they hide something worse.

Sara (The Squiggler)

Just announced, General Paul Vallaly (Sp?) suffered an aneurism and is in the hospital in Montana. He is one of the witnesses to Wilson's claims in the Green Room of Fox.

PeterUK

ajacksonian,
Thanks for the explanation.
What is odd,is that Kerry's boat was beached right near the Viet Cong with the B-40,this man was wounded by the machinegunner on the boat,but still managed to run carrying his,fired/unfired B-40.
Kerry siezed an M16 rifle and gave pursuit,subsequently shooting the Viet Cong.
Now,the picture shows Kerry with the M16 standing looking down at the body,so who was so close on Kerry's heels with a camera in the heat of battle and captured the moment for posterity.
Obviously,either the photographer had no concern for his own safety,or it was safe to do this,or Kerry stood over the corpse for a long time after.
This is a Pulitzer Prize winning picture,unclaimed.Another point is who would retain such an image for all these years?

Don Webster

"Magic Hat"? Listen, when FrankenKerry is involved, I believe the appropriate term is "Asshat". Example of use in a sentence: 'The fact that John Kerry is an asshat is seared, seared I say, into my memory for all eternity'.

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=asshat


clarice

How stupid is he to reprise this baloney? And how stupid is the NYT to play along?

Sue

Clarice,

Rhetorical questions, right? ::grin::

PeterUK

Clarice,but how kind of the duck to go round again.

windansea

LOL...here's a brand new cover story for why Kerry changed to 1969

Did Kerry simply confuse Christmas and Tet?

Kerry's story has five parts: 1) He was in Cambodia on a secret mission, 2) it was Christmas Eve, 1968, 3) South Vietnamese troops were shooting into the air to celebrate, 4) he was afraid he'd be killed by the friendly fire, and 5) he was worried that Nixon would lie to his family about his death, because it was a secret mission in an illegal war.

Points 1, 2, 4 and 5 have all been attacked by everybody from the Swifties first recruited by Nixon (see #5) to liberal columnists for the Boston Globe.

But nobody has attacked #3 -- which is the part that makes the least sense.

AND it's the part that most strongly suggests Kerry is essentially telling the truth.

ARVN, the South Vietnamese Army, was overwhelmingly Buddhist. (It was a Buddhist general. Big Minh, who had knocked off Diem, the Catholic, in 1963 and plunged us into the mess.) So they would have been most unlikely to be loudly celebrating Christmas -- which, in fact, is rarely if ever celebrated anywhere by firing off guns into the air.

But TET is celebrated with loud noises.

I dunno why the Kerry campaign didn't jump ahead of this, but it reminds me of Stephanopolous in 1992, when questions about Clinton's draft record came up, He was too young to know why this stuff was such a big deal for the Boomers. I get the impression nobody in the Kerry camp has the balls to go to him quick and set him straight on his own stories... but, geez: you know as well as I do that it's the guy whose war story checks out in EVERY detail who is most likely fibbing. People tend to remember the important thing (those assholes may kill me, and what would Nixon tell my family) and get details wrong (it was a Sunday, when it was a Tuesday).

In this case, the mistake on a detail tends to support everything else: he confused OUR holiday, with theirs -- and over 30 years of telling the tale, he's gotten the handle wrong

link

maryrose

I am happy to report I spent the day with my Vietnam veteran brother at a Chicago White Sox game, My husband and sister in-law were happy to honor and thank him for his service as we took a moment of silence in the stadium to honor all veterans. Unlike Kerry,my brother has never bragged about his service and usually spent Sundays delivering packages to the many orphanages in VietNam. He said the children would just swarm around them as they got off the truck. Even in war he was helping others and continues to do social work today. This is an example of a true veteran and a wonderful brother!

Sara (The Squiggler)

I'll let those who were there address this, but I seriously doubt that anyone who was there could confuse TET with any other time.

Sara (The Squiggler)

http://www.marxist.com/1968/vietnam.html

On the night of 31st January 1968, 70,000 North Vietnamese soldiers launched the Tet offensive - it proved to be one of the greatest campaigns in military history.

by Steve Forrest

Vietcong guerrilla fighters violated the temporary truce they had pledged to observe around the lunar new year celebrations, and surged into more than one hundred towns and cities, including Saigon.

Shifting the war for the first time from its rural base into the new arena of South Vietnam's supposedly impregnable urban areas, it was a campaign of 'enormous breadth, speed and scope.' It shook US imperialism to its roots and had a dramatic and lasting effect on US public opinion.

It was a campaign that had been in preparation since a study carried out by General Giap in September 1967 had concluded that the war had reached a 'stalemate' situation and that something needed to be done. Out of this report arose the plans for the Tet offensive. Vietcong leaders had carried out a vigorous propaganda campaign in order to prepare their forces. Ho Chi Minh urged the troops on to 'ever greater feats of battle' in 1968.

Giap had set the campaign's minimum and maximum objectives. As a mimimum the Tet outbreak would force the halting of the ariel bpombardment of North Vietnam and force the Americans into negotiations. As a maximum the offensive could drive the Americans out of Vietnam all together opening up the path to liberation and unification.

Although not meeting its major objectives the Tet offensive did have a lasting effect on the course of the war. It was a turning point. According to US secreatary of state, Henry Kissinger, 'Henceforth, no matter how effective our action, the prevalent strategy could no longer achieve its objectives within a period or within force levels politically acceptable to the American people.'

Vietcong soldiers stormed the highland towns of Banmethout, Kontum and Pleiku, they then simultaneously invaded 13 of the 16 provincial capitals of the heavily populated Mekong Delta.

In an attack that took the Americans off guard a small group of commandos seized the US embassy in Saigon. The embassy was an ultra modern building in the heart of Saigon and with the stars and stripes flying above it represented the very embodiment of US imperialism.

Through contacts and spies the Vietcong had managed to store arms, ammunition and explosives in a secret location in preparation for the attack. Then on the night of 31st January at 3am 19 Vietcong commandos literally arrived by taxi, then quickly blew their way through the wall and into the compound, automatic weapons blazing. Within five minutes, and four dead GIs, they were in control.

The attack stunned US President Lyndon Johnson and proved to be a catalyst in the attitudes of the American people towards the war. For the first time in a major war, television played a crucial role. Splashed across the screens of fifty million Americans. 'Dead bodies lay amid the rubble and rattle of automatic gunfire as dazed American soldiers and civilians ran back and forth, trying to flush out the assailants. Americans at home saw the carnage wrought by the offensive.' (Stanley Karnow)

Attacks were also launched at the HQs of both the US and South Vietnamese armies, as well as the massive US army base at Bienhoa, north of Saigon airport. The 14 commandos who had attacked the main Saigon radio station were trapped inside for 18 hours before blowing up the entire building with themselves inside.

The dimension and sweep of the offensive amazed US army generals, prompting one to comment that tracking the assault pattern on a map resembled a 'pinball machine, lighting up with each raid.'

US public opinion was probably most affected by the infamous incident at Mylai, where American soldiers massacred one hundred peasants, women and children among them.

Myron Harrington, commander of the US marines that eventually retook the city observed on fist entering, 'My first impression was of desolation, utter desolation. There were burnt out tanks and up-turned automobiles still smouldering. Bodies lay everywhere, most of them civilians. The smoke and stench blended, like in some kind of horror movie - except that it lacked weird music. You felt that something could happen at any minute, that they would jump out and start shooting from everyside. Right away I realised we weren't going to a little picnic.'

By early March there had been enormous casualties on both sides. The US and South Vietnamese had lost 6,000 men while the North Vietnamese lost a staggering 50,000 and in the process had seen the destruction of their organisation's command structure in the south.

General Westmoreland, supreme commander of US forces, perceived incorrectly that the Tet offensive paralleled the Battle of the Bulge in World War Two where the Germans staged a desperate bid to go for broke before meeting a rapid and inevitable defeat.

However as General Giap pointed out after the war, 'For us, you know, there is no such thing as a single strategy. Ours is always a synthesis, simultaneously military, political and diplomatic - which is why quite clearly, the Tet offensive had multiple objectives.'

One of the major objectives had been to drive a wedge between the Americans and the South Vietnamese. The embassy attack was aimed at showing up the vulnerability of the American forces. The Vietcong had hoped that their liberation of towns and cities would lead to an uprising against the Americans, they believed that the South's weary soldiers, dislocated peasantry, fractious youth and widely discontented layers of South Vietnamese society were ready to join the struggle. However this only occurred on a sporadic basis.

One of the most awesome battles in the offensive took place in Khesanh. Khesanh was a 'rolling region as lovely as Tuscany,' but it was also the home of a small US army base. Westmoreland believed that Giap's troops were converging on Khesanh as part of the policy to seize control of the northern provinces. He also likened it to the 1954 battle of Dienbienphu, when the North Vietnamese attacked the French in a bid to enhance their bargaining power at the then Geneva peace conference.

The analogy with Dienbienphu was preposterous - the US was in a far stronger position than the French were in '54. In 'Operation Niagra' the Americans had unleashed their B52 bombers ariel firepower - the greatest in military history. The Vietcong suffered huge losses, as many as 10,000 dead, while only 500 US marines were killed.

Westmoreland and most of the US high command were convinced that the Vietcong were desperately trying to re-enact Dienbienphu. But it was actually a brilliant piece of strategy to draw the Americans away from the big population centres and leave them open to assault.

Not only were the Americans caught off guard by Khesanh, but also by the rapidity and surprise of the whole offensive itself. Years later a West Point textbook describe the US intelligence failure to see what was happening on a par with Pearl Harbor.

A 1968 CIA report concluded: 'The intensity, coordination and timing of the attacks were not fully anticipated,' adding, 'another major unexpected point' was the ability of the Vietcong to hit so many targets simultaneously.

Tet was the final nail in the coffin for the administration of Lyndon Johnson. In 1963, when he came to power in the wake of the assasination John Kennedy, his approval rating was over 80%. But by 1967 it was down to 40%. 'But then came Tet - and his ratings plummeted - as if Vietnam were a burning fuse that had suddenly ignited an explosion of dissent.' (Stanley Karnow)

Sara (The Squiggler)

Plus Kerry was in Vietnam from Dec 1968 through Mar 1969. The Tet Offensive was almost a year before he got there. Or isn't this what you meant?

vnjagvet

was:

When something is "seared", I say "seared", in one's memory, though, it might be difficult to remove the resulting imprint, doncha think?

Lesley

Sara, I don't think it was a reference to the Tet Offensive. I think it was a reference to the Vietnamese New Year observed for three days after the first full moon after January 20th.

Sue

Sara,

I don't think he meant the Tet Offensive. Both the North and South Vietnamese had a cease fire agreement to celebrate Tet. That year the north broke the agreement during Tet.

Lesley

Sorry, Sara. Gaad, that was so unclear on my part. It is the idea that Kerry confused Christmas celebrations with Tet celebrations while he was in Vietnam (to get around his Christmas in Cambodia problem).

Sue

Fire Crackers

The most exciting element in the celebration of Tet is the lighting of trang phao (fire crackers). These explosions are believed to drive off ghosts and evil spirits and leave good luck in their place. As thousands of households simultaneously partake in this fantastic part of Tet, the level of volume and excitement rises to a fury. This level of emotion is the most memorable part of Tet and also the part which makes it such a marvelous experience. However, firecrackers are no longer used as the government banned them in 1995.

I believe this is what wind was referring to.

Lurker

ajacksonian,

Good work. I hadn't noticed that he was wearing long sleeves. Can you hone in on what he was carrying in his right hand? I wondered if Kerry was slightly wounded, which arm?

Sue

An even easier explanation as to why Kerry thought it was Christmas. He wasn't there very long and certainly not long enough to become aware of their different customs. ::grin:: A decorated tree could only mean one thing...Christmas.

Cay neu is a bamboo pole (New Year's Tree) stripped of its leaves except for a tuft on top. Red paper is used to decorate the tree, which is planted outside the house during the Tet holiday. The cay neu has Taoist origins and holds talismanic objects that clang in the breeze to attract good spirits and repel evil ones. On the very top, they frequently place a paper symbol of yin and yang, the two principal forces of the universe. Sometimes a colorful paper carp flag will fly from the top. The carp (or sometimes a horse) is the vehicle on which the Kitchen God travels to make his report. This tree is more common in the countryside now than in the city. It is ceremonially removed after the seventh day of Tet.

Sara (The Squiggler)

Well, even though the TET offensive was the previous year, I still don't think a U.S. military person would confuse the two as I'm sure that given the surprise attack the previous year, everyone would be on super serious alert the next year. However, someone who was actually there may have another view.

Would we want to elect a president who could make such a mistake anyway?

Sue

How ironic would it be if Kerry has been telling the truth all these years and merely confused Tet with our Christmas? ::grin::

Sue

Sara,

At the time, he probably knew it was not Christmas, but how to explain Tet to an American audience? Just make it Christmas Eve and who would ever know the difference? I think I'm helping frame Kerry's argument. I must stop before I sicken myself.

Lesley

Sue, please add plastic turkeys to your narrative - it will make it ever so much more believable.

Tom Maguire

Kerry was wounded on his *right* arm in the Bronze Star incident - I can't figure out from the pic what arm I am looking at.

And for Windansea - As I peer through my old notes, I can only say, nothing new under the sun. I don't see a date on the linked piece you had explaining that the Chenese New Year (aka "Tet") was Feb 17, 1969 and would have been clebrated with fireworkd and gunfire.

However, I did have this old post from Aug 13, 2004:

Now, other points I would ponder, if I were spinning for Kerry - why were the South Vietnamese getting liquored up in celebration of Christmas? It's not a Christian country. Ok, they were celebrating the truce. But when was the Chinese New Year that year (and is that celebrated in South Vietnam?) What, from the Command History, was Kerry doing then? And might that be the incident which is "seared" in his memory?

And down in the comments I answered my own question:

Sorry, I'm sort of off-topic. The Chinese New Year looks like it was Feb 16, 1969, based on moon phases and this paper.

The Chinese New Year is a major holiday in Vietnam, celebrated over three days. I assume that was true prior to the N Vietnamese takeover.

Amd I see from the Command History that boat 94 was operating in the Bay Hap river on Feb 18/19, getting shot at by VC and with "troops embarked to sweep ambush sites along the banks". Obviously, these could be SEALs, CIA, US Army, South Vietnamese army - who knows?

Ahh - at his website summary, they are South Vietnamese - probably from the after-action report. Maybe we don't fully believe that part of the report, since the covert stuff was covert...

And is this a glitch in the reporting - the Command History shows nothing for Feb 14; the website summary shows two (unidentified) PCFs dropped off a SEAL team. [Hmm, maybe the Feb 14 ran off the bottom of the page]. Again, the after-action reports might have an answer.

Now, I may be stone wrong about the date for the New Year, and I don't know whether the Bay Hap leads near Cambodia. But a Kerry spin-meister might want to reflect on this.

A mere 21 months later (but only 24 business hours!) Kerry is now telling the Times that Feb 12 is the magic date. What a clown.

Well. Suggestions you haven't seen elsewhere (unless you were reading this site two years ago) was in that same post - the news that we were routinely violating the Cambodian border only made headlines in 1973.

So, why was Kerry so shy in his Senate presentation in 1971? If he knew we were violating the border, why not say so? It would have made a nice complement to the Ghengis Kahan material.

Tom Maguire

Things to research -per the Times pop-up graphic, the after-action report for one of Kerry's incidents was done by a "Lt. Gibson".

From this site, I infer that we are talking about Charles R. Gibson, LTJG, OinC, whose date of service is a cryptic "'69" and whose boat was 72.

To what incident does the Times refer? IIRC, T Lipscomb demonstrated that Kerry probably did the after-action for the Bronze Star. But 72 was not there, darn it:

At 2:45 p.m., according to Navy records, Kerry was joined by four other Swift boats for the Bay Hap trip. Kerry led the way on the right-hand side of the river, in PCF-94, followed 15 yards behind by one of his best friends in Vietnam, Don Droz, in PCF-43. A procession of three boats on the left side of the river was led by Richard Pees on PCF-3, followed by Jack Chenoweth on PCF-23 and Thurlow on PCF-51.

Well, he wasn't there for the Silver Star either (no, I did not have to look that up - that was Droz, Rood, and Kerry):

But on Feb. 28, 1969, I was officer in charge of PCF-23, one of three swift boats--including Kerry's PCF-94 and Lt. j.g. Donald Droz's PCF-43--that carried Vietnamese regional and Popular Force troops and a Navy demolition team up the Dong Cung, a narrow tributary of the Bay Hap River, to conduct a sweep in the area.

Beats me - I'll bet we are talking about Kerry's Bronze Star and Gibson did the typing and signed the radio message for Kerry from the medical ship where he was having rice pulled from his buttocks.

But that is a *pure guess*.

Sara (The Squiggler)

OT -- Tom, did you happen to see the note I put up earlier about General Paul Vallely having an aneurysm. He is hospitalized in Montana? I note it because he is one of those supporting witnesses for Libby's claims that Wilson has a big mouth.

Tom Maguire

Sara, I did - I hope he left a deposition.

Sue

Well, no matter the truth, the new version puts Kerry no closer than 35 miles from the Cambodian border on Christmas Eve. How does that help him and his Christmas Eve tale?

Sue

According to Burton Moore, he is doing well and is expected to fully recover.

Javani

""They lied and lied and lied about everything," Mr. Kerry says in an interview in his Senate office. "How many lies do you get to tell before someone calls you a liar? How many times can you be exposed in America today?""

He's nervous.

Uncle Galahad

I think Reese suggested Gibson was on Kerry's boat, learning the ropes, during the Silver Star incident.

I'd guess this pushback has been carefully researched and the data massaged, even created, even to the point of ground work in Vietnam. He will be pushing back on the most defensible areas. His problem is that O'Neill is a careful litigator, and hasn't made a mistake reversible on appeal.

Kerry's greatest weakness lies in Bay Hap, and elsewhere that he hasn't answered the Swifties, and maybe with the Schacte bit. That he would delay a counterattack for two years after it was needed indicates first that it took that long to arrange, and second, that he thinks it is still necessary. It means he's running, duh, AND that he khows that the Swifties defeated him in '04. Anybody but Kerry could have beaten Bush.
===================

Sara (The Squiggler)

Lesley -- It won't do any good to try to educate these ignorant a$$holes.

These are the kinds of men they are branding liars:

Col. George E. "Bud" Day serves as the VVLF's President. Col. Day served in World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War, and is America's most highly decorated living combat veteran. Shot down over North Vietnam on August 26, 1967, he spent more than five years as a Prisoner of War.

Col. Day was the only POW to escape from prison in North Vietnam, only to be recaptured by the North Vietnamese in the South. Col. Day has received nearly 70 military decorations and awards, the most notable being the Medal of Honor. Currently, Col. Day is a practicing attorney in Florida, specializing in profound injury and death litigation cases and military law.

Sara (The Squiggler)

I'm going to take a break. I've gotten myself so upset, I'm posting comments to the wrong threads. Sorry.

Javani

AJacksonian:

"The next two look posed."

The one of him holding the RPG is posed, like millions of photos taken showing enemy weapons.

Really, no big deal. In Vietnam holding a RPG. What would be big is him showing us the hat.

If there is no issue about the hat, why not show it?

There's no hat.

The two pics, you are right, the shirts are different. I think the pants too, one light colored, one dark.

Daddy

Seems to me that the MSM now want us on the one hand to believe John Kerry because he was fake but accurate, and that on the other hand we are to disbelieve the SWIFT BOAT VETS because they were accurate but fake. Is that about the gist of it?

crosspatch

It seems to me that this is a cleanup effort so Kerry can get in front of the media on the Haditha issue. I see this as laying the groundwork for another round of Senate hearings along the lines of the Nicaragua hearings Kerry held during the Reagan administration. All speculation of course, but the timing seems to match.

Lurker

Aren't there any lawsuits going on between Kerry and any Swift Vets or equivalent?

Lurker

Seems that this mess comes up every Memorial Day holiday...woe to anyone suggesting renaming this weekend to "Kerry Day" holiday!!

PeterUK

Crosspatch,
I could go with that,if you look at the "Bring It On" thread,there is something very peculiar going on

Pofarmer

Senate hearings based on the possibility of ONE renegade SQUAD? That the military is investigating?

Course they had to "investigate" steriods in baseball, so I guess anything goes.

I think the Legislative branch has gone squarely out of control if this takes place.

Extraneus

I like that, crosspatch. They all know they have a potential new angle with Hidatha, and have been thinking about how best to use it for quite a while now. Murtha is probably the lead-gunner (already with his pic on the AP links), but anyone wanting to resurrect Kerry would be interested in this. Seems quite a minefield for the guy, considering all that's been discussed here, but he has nothing else.

Lesley

"Aren't there any lawsuits going on between Kerry and any Swift Vets or equivalent?"

Lurker: here's a blast from the past from Beldar. Memo to Sen. Kerry


Sara (The Squiggler)

5/9/2006 Senator John "The Censor" Kerry
John Aronoff of Accuracy in Media covers the VVLF / Carlton Sherwood lawsuit against John Kerry. "Sherwood's lawsuit accuses Kerry of being part of a conspiracy to discredit and silence Sherwood and 'Stolen Honor' through a campaign of falsehoods."


ALSO SEE:

http://mensnewsdaily.com/2006/04/10/war-vets-lawsuit-against-sen-john-kerry-heats-up/
_______________________


4/7/2006 War Vets’ Lawsuit Against Sen. Kerry Heats Up
Political commentator and former police chief Jim Kouri discusses the lawsuits involving the Vietnam Veterans Legacy Foundation and John Kerry.

https://www.vvlf.org/default.php?page_id=28

Lurker

Thanks, Sara, who did the filing(s)?

windansea

I believe this is what wind was referring to.

And for Windansea - As I peer through my old notes, I can only say, nothing new under the sun. I don't see a date on the linked piece you had explaining that the Chenese New Year (aka "Tet") was Feb 17, 1969 and would have been clebrated with fireworkd and gunfire.

let's get this right...I am in no way advocating that a Tet substition for Christmas squares Lurch's Cambodian adventure...I thought the attempt was simply hilarious...EOM :)

PeterUK

Christmas or Tet,doesn't matter, just find the sandbar he was beached on.

windansea

substitution...sorry

Sara (The Squiggler)

Lurker, the Vietnam Veterans Legacy Foundation carries on the Swift Boat Vets and POW Vets issues since the election. Their web site is:

http://www.vvlf.org

From there you can find links to all the current law suits and other info to do with John Kerry.

richard mcenroe

"I think Reese suggested Gibson was on Kerry's boat, learning the ropes, during the Silver Star incident."

So a green officer still being shown the basics of the unit's mission and operations, was tasked to write the after-action report? Is that what we're being asked to believe? Why, sure, many's the time as a brand new platoon leader my company commander would have me write up the after-action reports, why heck, even the colonel would have me write up the reports and personnel evaluations to send up to brigade.

Well, no, actually they didn't.

richard mcenroe

" So why was Kerry so shy in his 1971 Senate appearance? If he had been to Camodia, why not break that news to the Senate, along with the Ghengis Khan allegations and what-not? "

Because Apocalypse Now hadn't come out yet and Kerry hadn't 'remembered' where he'd been until he saw Martin Sheen playing him, er, acting...

Do any of you folks get Kerry's mailings. I do. He is chronically about two weeks behind the talking points and the Democratic Left and more or less reiterates them in the half-remembered fashion of a barroom drunk trying to barge into a fast conversation.

Kerry is harping on his "I Was Swiftboated" theme because that's all he has that distinguishes him from every other 'face' in the Democratic Party. In fact, after 20+ years in the Senate, that's all he has, period. He's like a washed-up actor reminiscing over his one hit series in the 60's.

Soylent Red

jacksonian:

In the B-40 picture, correct me if I'm wrong, but the weapon is reloaded. Didn't the VC take a potshot and then run? Did the crew or John himself reload the weapon for a cooler entry into the Presidential library?

It wouldn't suprise me if that's what happened, but based on what I've looked at, the B-40 picture was taken at a different time by a different camera.

I've been a semi-pro photog since high school, and what leaps out to me is the underexposure in the B-40 pic, as compared to the localized overexposure in the corpse pic (saturated darks vs. blown out whites). That doesn't happen from changes in natural lighting (unless they were snapping pictures over half a day).

That's all camera settings, which most people don't fool with very much unless they know what they are doing and are looking for effect. Even then, maybe a stop or two in either direction, and maybe a click or two up or down in speed, which wouldn't be enough to radically alter a full daylight shot.

I'd love to lay hands on the prints or scans that they used. They might be real, and they might have been taken at the same place and time, but it sure doesn't appear that way to me.

richard mcenroe:

The political version of Adam West?

Daddy

Okay, so we know he started Christmas Eve in his barracks approximately 50 miles from Cambodia? Check.

And we know from his diary entry that night that he had "visions of superplums dancing in his head"? Check.

And we know that he traveled to Cambodia that same evening with a guy who had a magic hat? Check.

And we also know that he personally delivered in country a bagfull of goodies to Cambodian Khmer Rouge rebels that same night? Check.

And we know the whole thing was "seared, seared into his memory" so he couldn't possibly be mistaken? Check.

Well Virginia, that about seals it for me. All I want to know now is what does a flock of flying reindeer poop smell like at 110 degrees, as it slams into your face while you're riding shotgun on a sleigh at midnight over the klongs of Nam?

ajacksonian

PeterUK - I have not checked the timeline of events to see how close the 'wound' in the top photo and the next two were in time. That said, it was apparently minor enough so as to not worry any medical personnel beyond a basic safety precaution for the climate.

Lurker - It would be his right arm that was wounded *if* there is continuity in time between the top photo and the corpse photo. My problem with that right arm is that it is *straight* and there are obvious dark patches in the area that are in non-continuous tone with the surroundings, and they are not too dark to be shadows given the overall universal lighting of the photo, as if taken on a cloudy day. It is hard to find a sharp contrast shadow anywhere. Thus the black patches are an anomoly. Some is certainly clothing to clothing contact, but again, the nature of the lighting precludes such very dark shadows. A look at the left arm shows such darkness also, which should indicated a high overhead, noontime sun. But whatever the head protection is does not cast such a shadow beyond the hairline. Additionally the soldier is not *looking* at the body but down the road, so the shadow should encompass hair, neck and the top of the vest. The stance of that soldier and surrounding dark areas by arm and weapon point to something being done to the image. I am not a forensics expert and have no idea what that may be and do not have the proper analysis equipment. And even if I did, I would want the *originals* to work with, not a digitized scan. Original film is optimal as modern microscopic techniques can see airbrushing to remove tones.

Javani - I will stop making a deal about 'The Magic Hat' when Mr. Kerry makes it out to be no big deal. Until then, its employ is legitimate use in any conversation about his wartime exploits. My problem with the RPG is that it is not clearly present in the corpse photo and by having changed everything about himself there is no guarantee that this is not another RPG picked up elsewhere and kept in the local stores for drawing at need. From my contacts with soldiers, many enemy weapons were tagged and then kept in such local stores for use at need, along with other personal equipment donated by soldiers rotating home and out of the military. By having *no continuity* between time of the photos one cannot assume that it was, indeed, an after-action shot. As you noted, many shots are taken like this. It could have been taken at, literally, any time in Mr. Kerry's stay in Vietnam. With differences in clothing and looking fresh, one can defintively say that this is not a direct *after action shot*, but one of Mr. Kerry hold *an* RPG at some time during his Vietnam tour. Until film with processing dates is put forward, the assertion that it was, indeed, after this particular action is not on firm ground.

Mr. Kerry has given no compunction about fabrication of timelines heretofore and is no longer in the position of having mere assertions taken at face value. He is *still* attempting to use assertions when an easy and verifiable means is available to show exactly what was done and where. He has, to date, not done that. So *anything else* used by him to back himself up falls short. He has earned that from me. I respect the fact that he did, indeed, serve the Nation. I do not give him, nor any Veteran a free pass after that, but due respect for their service. It appears to me that Mr. Kerry respects his service less than I do in attempting to use it as a politcal lever to gain high office. So be it.

Soylent Red - As per my previous to Lurker in this response, I believe that the B-40 RPG was taken from general stores of captured equipment. A vet can tell you better than I can if that is a weapon that has seen recent action, but the quality of the photo is not enough to show the wear and tear of combat. And it is, indeed, loaded with warhead plainly visible. I can make no statement as to the *type* of warhead it is, as that would take someone expert in that weapon, which I am definitively NOT.

From general shadowing and overcast skies one gets a similarity of lighting, which I take it was pretty much a given in the delta and riverine regions of Vietnam during late morning and early afternoon hours. A digital scan introduces artifacts from the scan itself, so without an examination of the original film, nothing can be said of continuity of camera, time or processing. Different photo processors will give slightly different treatments to similar film, not enough to cause gross distortion, but enough to change tonal qualities. And if these are scans from paper, then original photostock type and paper quality is also an issue. Archive quality photopaper was not in wide use at that time, so lesser grades and quality of paper were used, each of which will change tonal qualities over time. A forensics expert can read you chapter and verse on this, I can only account from press-imaged imagery taken from that era as compared to original film stock for large format impressions. Even high quality paper changes dimensions based on humidity level and light exposure, which is why your mother's shoebox is a good place for old photos and your modern, clear plastic box is not. There is a visible difference in images of same after a decade of storage.

If Mr. Kerry is, indeed, the keeper of these photos and is the originator of same, then he should still possess the film. If not, then the sources need clearly be identified and inquiries into original source film made.

High resolution scans from paper is one thing. High resolution scans from original film stock is something else again, and retains a higher fidelity to that iimage than even a recently printed and scanned image does. Even for contone printing, this is the case. The list for analysis starts at film, goes to high resolution imaging on archive quality paper, to high resolution imaging on high quality paper, to lower resolution imaging on normal photostock, and ends in newspapers printing.

Original filmstock is the most desireable to have. Film stock will *also* degrade over time and change dimensions and lose tonal contrast if it is not kept in humidity and temperature controlled conditions. Vietnam era film stock can actually get brittle and have emulsion flake off if it is not properly kept. Many motion pictures shot during this era are in serious need of restoration as the original film is deteriorating and many chemical reactions are still ongoing. Luckily, silver halide imaging is very resistant to this, as the glass plate Civil War negatives attest to. But the frailties of time and humidity and temperature still take a toll.

To those interested in preserving photographs that are fading and NO NEGATIVES are available, my advice is to scan at the highest resolution possible and within one's budget. Save the digital image in multiple places with different storage media and then work with downsampled raster images. It can be tedious to add the metadata of picture location, date, camera (if known), what is being imaged, much of which is captured by modern digital cameras, especially those that are GPS capable. It is worth the effort 'now' as those memories are living ones and will die with individuals involved. There are a few geolocation picture services that are free public archives starting up, and may be worth looking into. Be warned that CDs and DVDs have not proven to be microbial safe in the tropics, and their actual storage media has been literally *eaten* by microbes in months. Magnetic storage is good for between 1.5 and 5 years before refreshing is needed. The public photo systems use RAID arrays for safe and redundant storage that can be transferred without loss to larger arrays as they are brought online. Some commercial companies will also keep scans and digital photos for fee.

These are the memories and places and people and events of Our history. The loss of their context is something that cannot be overstated. It is a headache to do. But history is served in the doing, for all that follow to know the importance of We who have come Before and are gone.

Ghengis Khan

Enough of the smears already,if I were that bad you would'nt dare dis me OK?
Where can I find this little weed Kerry,teach him Mongol Polo.

PeterUK

AJacksonian,
The picture that tels the story is Kerry and the corpse,Think of the implications of a timeline for that.

The photographer and Kerry exited the boat together,or the photographer shortly after.

or Kerry was still standing over the corpse when the photographer arrived at a later time.

Kerry returned to the scene later and the picture was taken.

The whole scene was posed.

Big Al from Saloniki

Hey GK, just try to catch him rolling dirty.

Ghengis Khan

Al,


"Hey GK, just try to catch him rolling dirty."

It's his head"

lurker

Didn't Doug Reece say that they stayed around for about an hour and the photos were taken then?

Guess they each must pack a bag of spare clothes?

Big Al from Saloniki

You're tellin' me? Big Al? Why you Johnnie come lately, I've half a mind to finish off India after all. Who'd care about you, then?

Big Al from Saloniki

Genny come lately. They tell me your women rode better than your men and your travel rations were mare's blood and milk. I wish I'd thought of that last one, though.

ed

Hmmmm.

Kerry returned to the scene later and the picture was taken.

You know that really creeps me out.

My father did a couple tours in Vietnam in the US Army's Transportation Corps out running ammo barges up the rivers. Now he's got, or had, bags and bags of photos but not one ever showed a dead body or him posing with one.

Who the hell takes posed photos of dead bodies as a memento? Does anyone really want the picture of some dead schlub as a keepsake thirty years later?

It's just creepy.

Patrick R. Sullivan

'Well, he wasn't there for the Silver Star either (no, I did not have to look that up - that was Droz, Rood, and Kerry)'

Actually, Gibson was along on the Silver Star mission, as a trainee. But, as someone else noted, he wouldn't have been writing up the AA report.

kim

Well, shouldn't have been writing them up. Maybe Kerry was too busy running take after take after take of the documentation. There is a code used to determine who wrote the report. Where is that data?
============================

kim

It might be interesting to see Doug Reese's after action report for that day. Surely he wrote one for the Army. If not he, then someone. Got a copy handy, Doug? Ought to be in the files, somewhere.
==================================

Cecil Turner

Who the hell takes posed photos of dead bodies as a memento? Does anyone really want the picture of some dead schlub as a keepsake thirty years later?

I've seen guys do the photo-op thing with a burned-out tank and incinerated crew. (They were roundly chastised by the commander, but in the absence of leadership . . .)

It's just creepy.

No kidding.

PeterUK

"Does anyone really want the picture of some dead schlub as a keepsake thirty years later?"

Pathologists,coroners.forensics and weirdos,more importantly what ambitious person keeps evidence of a possible wae crime?

richard mcenroe

Soylent Red — Adam West — I've met the guy, nice fella — has come to grips with his career and his legacy, and still does the work he can do, in cameos, voice work, etc.

Kerry has never once in his life acknowedged the reality of his actions.

And I've seen Kerry's speeches and 'testimony.' Adam West is a better actor.

Ghengis Khan

Al,Yeah you and whose army? Wring century Pal,yourlimp wristed phalanx ain't worth shit against my archers on horseback.

Bigger Al than you, Khan't keep it.

Arrows miss my moving phalanx. We're on you before you're in the saddle.

Ghengis Khan

Rubbish Al,you are all to busy combing each other's hair,polishing your helmets and saying." Does my bum look big in this Kilt?"

Aristotle et Al

Your Daddy's so dumb he didn't hire you a decent tutor.

Ghengis Khan

Coming from a someone who offed thier daddy,that's rich Al!

The comments to this entry are closed.

Amazon

  • Lee Child, Kindle short story
  • Lee Child
  • Gary Taubes

Traffic

Wilson/Plame