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October 15, 2004

Comments

Robert Crawford

Sullivan's so in the tank for Kerry it's no surprise he's showing signs of not getting enough oxygen.

john

Hey! Don't we now know that ABC's show is an in-kind contribution to the Kerry campaign? Call Sinclair! Call the FEC!

Reid

The pre-FMA Sullivan would have eviscerated Nightline's puff piece. It's really sad to see the depths to which he has fallen.

nora

What's up with Sullivan? He seems to have lost his mind the last 6 months or so, or at least the part of the brain that houses the "logic" department. Do some of his friends need to stage an intervention? I believe he is about to lose it entirely--someone can't be that out to lunch without a breakdown of sorts.

Mantis

So, let me get this straight, we trust Kerry and his crewmates on their story in the Boston Globe, but not the story on Nightline from other people who were there. Then, we no longer trust Kerry and his crewmates story when it comes to his medals, not to mention not trusting the Navy when they say everything is on the up and up. So we can't trust the Navy or Nightline, but we can trust the Boston Globe and Kerry, except when the Swift Boat vets say not to?
This is all so absurd, I don't know why it continues. It's quite obvious to me that the vets have a grievance against Kerry for what he said after the war, and they may very well have a legitimate one (I don't think so, but so be it). All the rest of this crap about his metals and particular battles from people who weren't on his boat or weren't every near there, most never even met John Kerry, is just a bunch of political horseshit. I hear the right complain all day about people not supporting the troops, not having confidence in our troops, but when a man who fought for this country in Vietnam runs for office, forget what the Navy says, it's time to take him down. What can I say, it's a cheap and tawdry political trick.

By the way, I don't give a shit where Bush was in '72, or how he spent his Nat. Guard time.

Johnboyltd

Andrew used to pride himself in being a gay right winger.
Sadly he seems to be a one trick pony, he's now just gay. Pity, his one obsession seems to be the Gay Marraige issue which is coloring everything.

HH

Yes, we find a news story that took place under the auspices of communist government minders (whose museum carries a picture of Kerry) less than trustworthy. Call us crazy.

Mantis

HH, anything intelligent to say? I don't think people are crazy for not believing the Nightline report, I don't believe it myself. What I'm saying is that people who are out get Kerry seem happy to use any source that fits into their scheme, even Kerry himself.

Cecil Turner

"What I'm saying is that people who are out get Kerry seem happy to use any source that fits into their scheme, even Kerry himself. "

If everybody tells the same story, it's probably correct. If folks tell a different story (e.g., heavy fire vs no fire in the BS incident) then we probably would look a little deeper (and in that incident find no holes in the boats).

BTW, there's a difference between "medal" and "metal" (and "ordnance" and "ordinance," "breach" and "breech," etc.). If you want to pretend credibility on martial matters, it's best to try to use them correctly.

Mantis

Cecil, my apologies to the spellmaster. It's called a typo. I know the difference between metal and medal. You'll notice I spelled it right earlier in the post.

Cecil Turner

Sorry, but those grate.

Back to the subject, is it hypocrisy to accept similar accounts as givens and focus on those places where the accounts differ? I don't think so.

Mantis

I don't think it's hypocrisy, no. What I do think is that some people will accept any account as long as it makes Kerry look bad, and even if made by people who were not there, despite the fact that their account contradicts those who were actually there.

Lurking Observer

The sad part is that, I think that Kerry could have had a much stronger set of legs to stand on, if he (or, more likely, his supporters) weren't so adamant about accepting only his version.

It is quite likely that, once 50-cals starting blasting, that you had the equivalent of a "mad minute," with people thinking they're being fired upon, when what they're really hearing is the reports of each others' weapons. Hardly uncommon in wartime. It would explain why some folks thought they were being shot at, others didn't, and why there were no bullet holes in the boats. Nor does it mean anyone was lying (it's far easier to make sense of something thirty years later than when you're in the s***).

If Kerry hadn't insisted on making this a centerpiece of his campaign (where even in the third debate he couldn't keep from referring to having fought in Vietnam), that probably would've been the end of it. (Not so, of course, for his post-war activities.)

Unfortunately for mantis, I think the problem isn't that only the anti-Kerry stories are finding traction. Rather, it is that Kerry has insisted that there is only one story, and his defenders as well as his attackers have been finding holes in that story.

Mantis

I'm inclined to agree with you LO. And I personally think the vets have a legit complaint against Kerry for his testimony after the war, but it seems that deconstructing the battlefield from almost forty years later is never going to get us to the truth. Soldiers in the heat of battle may not see things the exactly alike, and will almost certainly not remember them the same way. What I don't understand is why people just don't accept the Navy version? It seems to me that a lot of people who want to dig into this had the opposite opinion when it came to Bush: the Nat. Guard said he was honorably discharged, so be it. I know that's not how it worked out, but I think it should have been.

TM

What I do think is that some people will accept any account as long as it makes Kerry look bad/

At the risk of repeating myself - the Swiftees charge was that Kerry's own story, as he told it to the Globe, did not jibe with the offical report (as reflected in the citation), which Kerry may well have written, since he was the officer in charge of that mission.

For ABC to say, "Aha!, the Swift Boat version of what happened that day is wrong, it wasn't a teenager!", hardly rebuts the Swiftees. This is a point that ABC should have noted, and that Andrew obviously missed.

Cecil Turner

"his defenders as well as his attackers have been finding holes in that story . . ."

Precisely. And I think most people would find it more convincing when a supporter admitted an account was inflated (e.g., Rassmann's version of the third PH's shrapnel wound as being from the grenades in the rice bin).

JimBob

The gay marriage issue is driving Sullivan. Since the Missouri and Louisiana votes on the issue, Sullivan has been in full meltdown mode on his blog. He knows by really wide margins, the American people don't support changing the definition of marriage. Thus his only hope is an activist judiciary and that's the type of judges Kerry will nominate. Everything else is secondary to Sullivan.

Lurking Observer

mantis:

I think you have your timeline reversed. People started questioning Bush's record long before they went after Kerry's. Bush-AWOL first appeared in the 2000 election, courtesy of the Boston Globe. The BUSHAWOL site has been around almost as long.

Thus, the hypocrisy, it seems to me, is in those who doubt the ANG records but support the Navy records.

As for believing the Navy accounts for various medals, my understanding is that for at least one medal, the Navy citation is problematic, since it may have been written by Kerry himself (in contravention, AFAIK, of Navy SOP). This is one reason why the release of the SF-180 is important, since it would allow people to determine who wrote the citations, and what supporting documentation exists for the medals (a requirement, iirc, for most such awards). That, coupled with the issuance of multiple citations, and the question of the first PH (why it was denied, who then authorized its award), are not answered by simply "believing the Navy accounts," unless those accounts are supplemented (usually by documents withheld by the Kerry campaign).

max

Simply amazing to me that in a time of war (albeit to date amazingly successful war for us) that someone's political orientation can turn 180 degrees over an issue that:

(i) is completely irrelevant to the issues and dangers we face in the real world; and

(ii) rightly wasn't an issue in either the 2000 or the 2002 elections, let alone before then.

And yet Andrew Sullivan has made that 180 degree turn without blinking a eye. It does make me wonder about both his sincerity (about any thing other than gay marriage) and his IQ.

perfectsense

The Swifties have 60 affidavits to back them up. Andy has none, zero, zilch. In fact the MSM never uses affidavits to support their stories and frequently use unnamed source for front page smears of Bush.

Doug Reese

The accounts of the villagers pretty much agree with the accounts of those of us (Americans) who were there that day.

And our accounts pretty much agree with Kerry's. Remember, the first Siler Star citation is very detailed, and accurate, as opposed to the other two citations -- I don't know what the story is on them, other than to say they are shorter, and less accurate in some areas. However, they were written years later.

Kerry's Silver Star was first questioned in a Boston Globe article by David Warsh in October 1996. His piece was dismissed as poorly researched. However, the one favor he did Kerry was causing several of his former commanders (Zumwalt, Elliott and Hoffman) and crew to stand by his side denouncing what was in that article. This was on the eve of the 1996 senate election.

Doug

Cecil Turner

"The accounts of the villagers pretty much agree with the accounts of those of us (Americans) who were there that day."

AFAICT there are no significant disputes on the Silver Star incident (between Kerry and the Swift Vets). Except some argue it didn't merit a Silver Star--which is purely subjective.

The factual disputes are mainly over the first and third Purple Hearts, and the Bronze Star incident.

Earl T

Simple solution: Sign the Form 180 and let everyone see the whole record!

As for Andrew, he's "dreamy in love" with the Touchy feely Kedwards Twins and has been damn near irrational as a result. I quit reading his blog months ago. Taking off on Percy Sledge; "When a man loves a man, if he's bad he can't see it.........." you know the drill!

Meatss

Didn't the reporter Lipscomb (sp?) in Chicago have a recent story regarding Kerry's discharge. A Navy document had been unearthed reporting that he was given an Honorable Discharge per the findings of a board of officers. Normally it doesn't take a review board for an HD. The assumption is he received a less than Honorable Discharge due to either his non completion of Reserve duty after he got an early out from Active Duty or due to his anti war activities. If that had happened, then he would have lost his medals. If that had happened, then that would explain why his HD and medals were re-issued in '85. HMMMMMM????

Remy Logan

I wouldn't be surprised to find out that Andrew and George Soros had a meeting earlier this year, and that Andrew is now drawing a Soros signed paycheck. He wouldn't be the first lefty blogger to be doing so.

rezzrovv

Personally, I'm sick of Sullivan. Not simply because he doesn't agree with me but rather he is a fickle child. He rushes to judgements and criticisms beneath the full charge of his emotions devoid of rational objectivity. He was for the war but couldn't stomach the war when it got tough. In war, people die and politicians get black eyes. This he couldn't handle and went off the deep end. Anyone who didn't think it would get worse before it got better is a fool. Sullivan's hindsite is amazingly accurate, it's a shame he wasn't Secretary of Defense.

Another Thought

Sullivan should just declare his blog to be one focusing on the gay marriage issue, and leave it at that.

He cannot be objective about anything else...he really is a huge disappointment. Unlike the pre-FMA Sullivan, he puts the gay marriage issue above national security. Someone should tell him that gays won't have many rights under the Islamofascists.


Dios Prometheus

After reading Pious Andrew Sullivan's blog for more than a year, I came to conclusion that he is a deceitful person who bangs the drums of hatred towards people he perceives as his enemy. I wrote him in the spring of this year, when he was firing his hate guns towards Mel Gibson and his movie, that he would turn on Bush and support Kerry. So far, he has behaved just as I told him. Like Brutus did Caesar, Sullivan now sticks Bush in the back at every opportunity. Sullivan once supported Bush and his war on Terrorism, but none of that matters to him anymore. He now devotes most of priggish verbiage to trying to convince those who still read his mad ranting that Kerry is a fiscal conservative who can handle the war on terrorism better than the liberal spending George W. Bush. Logic and facts are lost on him, and have been for a long time.

Ern Collins

Bottom line: ever since Bush proposed the marriage amendment (which I oppose, btw), virutally nothing Andrew Sullivan writes regarding the Bush administration can be taken as an intellectually honest analysis. Which is fine. The problem, however, is that Andrew would never admit it.

Having devolved into a one-issue type, Andrew's commentaries are -- like a broken record -- predictable and of little value.

HH

MSNBC's David Shuster also praises ABC for trying to use info out of a communist country to influence an election, while attacking his old employee Fox (though he doesn't bother to mention that), for getting ratings from a perverted jerk (as opposed to CNN).

HH

"HH, anything intelligent to say? I don't think people are crazy for not believing the Nightline report, I don't believe it myself."

Well I come across as more intelligent than Koppel & co. according to you...

Leon

Please note that, when the Navy said that "everything was fine", they were saying that the proper people signed the forms, the proper people forwarded them and the proper authorities issued the medals. Factual accuracy of the write-ups and citations and judgments about the proper level of award were not addressed. (As a side note about the issue of enemy fire or not, remember the old saying "Friendly fire isn't"

HH

Is this the same Doug Reese who admitted he was the man the Vietnamese man on ABC implied was a member of the Swift Boat Vets for Truth? Doesn't this make at least that one a liar?

kim

Right, asking villagers a mile off about John Kerry, in March of '03, but claiming not to have visited the site of the Silver Star battle?

Doug, get ovah heah; you got some splainin' to do.
=============================

Doug Reese

Here I am, Kim . . . . OK, Ok, it's 10 months after you kindly requested my presence so I could splain' some of this to you, but hey, better late than never!

Now then, what did you want to know?

Doug Reese

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