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September 21, 2004

Comments

ras

Here's an idea: the RNC should offer a $10,000 reward to the first person who can produce John Kerry's military records, the ones he promised to release.

Ditto the medical and tax records. Double the money if produced before the last debate.

ras

Hey, for fun, why not up the reward for any registered Dem (say, if they can show they were registered as of the date Kerry was nominated at the Dem Convention)? Go big, like tenfold. $100,000 if even one Dem can make their man live up to his own promises. Money well spent.

igoramus987

Why the 1st Purple Heart is 100% Bogus:

1. Kerry claims to have been the Officer in Charge for the 1st Purple Heart mission, with two other enlisted men in the boat
2. Kerry claims that there was hostile fire
3. Whenever there is hostile fire, the Officer in Charge must write up an after-action report
4. Where is this report? So far no one has seen it. The Kerry campaign has said that they have released all Kerry's records.

Bottom line...
No report = No hostile fire = Bogus 1st Purple Heart

For more research see http://idexer.com/articles/kerry_medals.htm

Jim Treacher

How about a $10,000 reward to anybody who's personally witnessed Trudeau drawing his own strip?

Patrick Casey

I seem to recall reading a while ago an editorial (or a letter to the editor) written by someone in the Reserves who witnessed Bush on base in Alabama reading flight manuals during the disputed time. I could have the story way wrong (and I don't have Lexis-Nexis to do my own research) but it could have been via a link on NRO. Could someone check, please?

Oh, how I would love to see Trudeau pay up!

Brian

Why are we still debating this? Bush didn't do everything he was supposed to do. Need something more? Look no further than those commies at the Air Force Times.

Forbes

The "commies at the Air Force Times" are a little behind the times as they're still reporting that cBS stands behind the forgeries put forth in support for their 60 Minutes segment. The AFT article is a compilation of the stories in the MSM, and therefore merely repeats the lies that have already been debunked, without doing any new reporting. Next?

Brian

Forbes,

What lies?

Cecil Turner

"What lies?"

Well, the most obvious is this one:
"The descent began when Bush apparently did not follow an order to report for his annual flight physical in May 1972, which got him grounded."

There's also no record of a waiting list for the pilot program, Ben Barnes really doesn't qualify to be a "most accounts" source, and early outs were common after the Vietnam War ended. But those could charitably be called "mistakes."

Brian

Links?

Cecil Turner

Let's see, on the order to get a flight physical, we have the standard requirement: to obtain a physical prior to the end of the birth month (in Bush's case, July 31st). Notice how well that meshes with the grounding notice "effective 1 August"? And the forged memos aren't even internally consistent, since the 19 May memo says: "We talked about him getting his flight physical situation fixed before his date." (5 days after the 14 May deadline given in the 4 May memo.) Combined with CBS's subsequent admissions about their provenance, and Bill Burkett's history of shopping phony document stories, I think this one is comfortably into the "disproven" category.

On the other issues, I think Barnes being a partisan is self-evident, as is early outs after the war. The waiting list stuff has been debunked repeatedly for several years. Here's two from the Daily Howler--from 1999.

Slartibartfast
Brian

Cecil,

Thanks for the links to that stuff.

So you really think that he didn't receive any special treatment?

And what about this?

Cecil Turner

"Thanks for the links [. . .] So you really think that he didn't receive any special treatment?"

You're welcome. On special treatment: I really have no idea. But there sure doesn't seem to be much evidence for anything untoward.

The US News story is silly. Lt Bush didn't set the requirements for satisfactory performance in the TANG . . . his commanders did. If they used an Air Force standard they supposedly weren't supposed to use (which is suspiciously like the standard everyone uses today, and the de facto standard), too bad. That's the way they ran it. The contention that he didn't make 50 points in his last year flies in the face of the analysis the quoted personnel expert conducted (Col Lloyd--also quoted here), and blogger Baldilocks who does this stuff for a living. In that light "U.S. News's analysis shows . . ." is insufficient.

On the "should have been called to active duty" point, Lawrence Korb is clearly out to lunch. Regardless of how they thought the points should be added, the TANG's review credited Bush for good years. Moreover, nobody was getting drafted, much less activated, in late '72. There wasn't a slot for a newbie 102 pilot in the active force, and he'd have been more of a hindrance than an asset as they retrained him. At that point he was a dinosaur, and activation ceased to be a credible threat. They were only too happy to let him go early, and he wasn't the Lone Ranger.

And the stuff about not fulfulling his duty because he wasn't flying is also nonsense. Lt Bush was a specialist with a particularly useless specialty--which was becoming obvious in '72-73--and there was no incentive to retrain him. The F-102 had been removed from front-line service (Palace Alert ended in 1970, having demonstrated its glaring deficiencies), was in the process of being retired ("Large-scale retirement of the F-102A from the ANG began in late 1969"), and the program to convert them to target drones began in 1973 (which even the densest fighter pilot will usually recognize as a hint). Was he less than motivated over his last couple of years? Well, yeah, I bet he was.

Brian

1. "But there sure doesn't seem to be much evidence for anything untoward."

Do you really believe that? Barnes was just making stuff up, or something like that?

"The US News story is silly."

Why can't someone refute what is in there - all of it?

"In that light "U.S. News's analysis shows . . ." is insufficient."

What about Scott Silliman and James Currie?


"Lt. Col. Albert Lloyd"

I don't want to doubt this man's credibility too much, but don't you find it a little fishy that he was directly picked by the Bush administration?

"Baldilocks"

He does it for a living?


"Moreover, nobody was getting drafted, much less activated, in late '72. There wasn't a slot for a newbie 102 pilot in the active force, and he'd have been more of a hindrance than an asset as they retrained him. At that point he was a dinosaur, and activation ceased to be a credible threat. They were only too happy to let him go early, and he wasn't the Lone Ranger."

Can you prove any of this?

"Was he less than motivated over his last couple of years? Well, yeah, I bet he was."

So essentially, he's allowed to slack off because he wasn't needed?

2. Additionally, I'm not entirely clear about the whole issue of the physical. Go into a little more detail.

3. I know you didn't mention this in the last few posts, but the fact that Bill Burkett may be a little bit of a loon doesn't discredit the claims he made, since similar ones have been made by people who don't have such colorful pasts.


4. At this point, you've got to wonder why I press so hard about this. Well, here's a good example of why. To take just one example:

*On his transfer request Bush was asked to list his Air Force specialty code.

But Bush, an F-102 pilot, erroneously wrote the code for an F-89 or F-94 pilot. Both planes had been retired from service at the time. Bush, an officer, made this mistake more than once on the same form.

If he was on an F-102, which, as you claim, means he wouldn't have to fly, why didn't he fill out the right boxes?

(Side note: based on a quick breeze through its archives, Salon appears to have quite a bit of good stuff there.)


Cecil Turner

"Do you really believe that? Barnes was just making stuff up, or something like that?"

Puhleeze. Barnes is hardly a neutral source (he's a "Vice Chair" fund raiser for the Kerry Campaign). He'd previously said:

that he sometimes received requests for help in obtaining Guard slots. He said he never received such a call from then-Rep. Bush or anyone in the Bush family.
He later stated (under oath):
that he had spoken to the head of the Texas Air National Guard on Mr. Bush's behalf, but had no contact with anyone in the Bush family.
The story goes on to say:
And there is no direct evidence that Mr. Bush's family pulled strings to get him into the 147th. Mr. Bush is firmly on record denying it, as is the commander of the unit, and there is no paper trail showing any influence by the Bush family.
Whatever his story is now, he's lost his chance to claim anything more than the standard "good ol' boy" network--and in any event it's hard to see why he'd bend over backward for GHWB, a political rival. (And his credibility suffers from his own rather spotty background on ethics issues, which is why he's a former politician.) If your claim rests on Ben Barnes being an "unimpeachable source," well . . .

"What about Scott Silliman and James Currie?"

Again, Silliman and Currie are accusing the TANG Commanders of not using the right standard. Lt Bush didn't set the policy, or decide how many points he needed per year--they did. If Silliman and Currie want to track down former commanders to call them on it, they can feel free.

"Can you prove any of this?" (military personnel policies at the end of Vietnam)

Probably--but I can't generate enough interest to dig through 30 year-old records--especially since the explanations required on the most basic military issues become tiresome. In any event, the burden of proof rests on the person making the affirmative claim (in this case "Bush AWOL"). Knock yourself out.

Brian

"Puhleeze. Barnes is hardly a neutral source"

I never said he was a neutral source, but if we eliminate for picking sides in a two-party system, we can't include anyone. That means that the people you mention go out the window.

"Whatever his story is now, he's lost his chance to claim anything more than the standard "good ol' boy" network--and in any event it's hard to see why he'd bend over backward for GHWB, a political rival. (And his credibility suffers from his own rather spotty background on ethics issues, which is why he's a former politician.) If your claim rests on Ben Barnes being an "unimpeachable source," well . . ."

What made him change his story? Why is it okay for the Swift Boat Liars to change their stories and flip flop? Why would there be a paper trail? Why is it hard to imagine that he would help out a political rival's son? GHW Bush wasn't exactly the county sheriff for a population of 200.

"Lt Bush didn't set the policy, or decide how many points he needed per year--they did."

And why was he allowed to get away without meeting it?

"In any event, the burden of proof rests on the person making the affirmative claim (in this case "Bush AWOL"). Knock yourself out."

WHY did you ignore the Salon piece? That was even more devastating than the US News piece.

Cecil Turner

"I never said he was a neutral source, but if we eliminate for picking sides . . . "

Again, the unsupported word of Ben Barnes is not convincing. If you think it is, we can agree to disagree.

"And why was he allowed to get away without meeting it?"

Every named expert says he did meet it. The TANG review said he met it, and Baldilocks said he met it. Only the "U.S. News's analysis" showed he didn't meet it, and they gave no details on their calculations. Also not convincing.

"That was even more devastating . . ."

Every story is supposedly "more devastating" than the last. But the bottom line is that every claim GWB got special treatment, skipped a queue, or failed to meet minimum standards is unverifiable. If you could find one concrete piece of evidence, this thing might grow some legs. (Though it probably still wouldn't, for the simple reason that he didn't base his candidacy on it--unlike a certain unnamed senator who thinks his puffed up war stories are a substitute for a national defense policy.)

Greg F

"WHY did you ignore the Salon piece? That was even more devastating than the US News piece."

Some people just don't get it.

Brian

"Again, the unsupported word of Ben Barnes is not convincing."

Is it just Barnes?

"If you could find one concrete piece of evidence, this thing might grow some legs."

There are plenty of unanswered questions. If Bush's case is so rock solid, why hasn't he answered them?

"(Though it probably still wouldn't, for the simple reason that he didn't base his candidacy on it--unlike a certain unnamed senator who thinks his puffed up war stories are a substitute for a national defense policy.)"

Oh, how I love seeing this.

Brian

Greg F,

What about the Salon piece?

TomCom

Brian

Call the DNC & offer them your statement as a campaign slogan: Bush got special treatment in the National Guard!

It'll get oh so many votes. And yes so it's hard to refute, 'cause it's meaningless.

(You can give all of the Nat Guard guys special treatment some of the time & some of the Nat Guard guys favorable treatment all the time, but you can't give all the Nat Guard guys special treatment all the time. A. Lincoln, Commander In Chief)

TomCom

Greg F

"What about the Salon piece?i"

More baseless accusations. Let us know when you have some proof.

Brian

TomCom,

It's not meaningless. It says something about a guy when he supports a war but cannot go and fight it.

Brian

Greg F,

What baseless accusations?

Greg F

Brian,

Your the one making the accusationsm, now go do your homework and provide proof.

TomCom

Brian

Try to stay focused.

I repeat: Your phrase "special treatment" is meaningless. Doubt me? Try to sell it to the Dems as a slogan.

TomCom

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