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February 26, 2004


Patrick R. Sullivan

Oh, you don't have to listen, you can see the movie. Just like Audie Murphy, Kerry was in a movie. Of course, Kerry had to make it himself, and had to expose his boat and men to possible attack in order to get this future campaign material...but the important thing is to record history:


Kerry told reporter Charles Sennott the oft-repeated story of the February 1969 firefight in which Kerry attacked the Viet Cong who ambushed his Swift boat.

Kerry won the Silver Star, as well as a Purple Heart, for his efforts.

But the story wasn’t about the firefight itself. It was also Kerry’s reaction to it.

The future senator was so “focused on his future ambitions,” Sennott reported, that he bought a Super-8 movie camera, returned to the scene, and re-enacted the skirmish on film.

It was that film, transferred to videotape, that Kerry played for Sennott.

“I’ll show you where they shot from. See? That’s the hole covered up with reeds,” Kerry said as he ran the tape in slow motion.

Kerry told Sennott that his decision to re-enact the fight on film was no big deal — “just something I did, no great meaning to it.” But it’s clear that the old movie is a huge deal.

“Through hours of watching the films in the den of his newly renovated Beacon Hill mansion, it becomes apparent that these are memories and footage he returns to often,” Sennott wrote.

“Kerry jumps repeatedly from the couch to adjust the Sony large-screen TV in his home entertainment center, making sure the picture is clear, the color correct. He fast forwards, rewinds and freeze-frames the footage. His running commentary — vivid, sometimes touching, sometimes self-serving — never misses a beat.”


I have to pitch that link in there.

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