Fog of War

The Dallas Absurder has a decent article titled Fog of War. I don’t know why they had Gonzalez do it when they have Glenna Whitley (co-author of Stolen Valor) on staff, but I guess that’s why I’m not an editor.

Where Veterans for Kerry see an American hero, O’Neill and his crew see someone who derided veterans and lied about his service in order to end his tour prematurely.

“There are a lot of medals that really wouldn’t make any difference to me,” says O’Neill, whose decorations in Vietnam included two Bronze Stars. “The Purple Heart is a medal that really makes a big difference because it’s a medal that people associate with genuinely being wounded. Maybe it makes more difference to me. My uncle was killed in Korea, and one of my earliest memories was sitting at the Naval Academy cemetery, and I watched them give my aunt, who had five little kids, a Purple Heart for my uncle, whose body has never been recovered. The Purple Heart is a big deal.

“You get somebody who fakes a Purple Heart, you know, that’s the bottom rung of human conduct. You get somebody who fakes a Purple Heart and uses it to go home early, you’re even further down. You get somebody who fakes it, uses it to come home early and then calls everyone else a chicken hawk? Son, you’ve got a real problem on your hands.”

Ouch. RTHT.

9 Comments

  1. smijer says:

    You get somebody who fakes a Purple Heart, you know, that’s the bottom rung of human conduct.

    Who??? John Kerry has medical papers that testify for all three of this, and no evidence of faking any of them… GWB didn’t even go to Vietnam. Who?

    You get somebody who fakes a Purple Heart and uses it to go home early, you’re even further down.

    Who? Kerry could have come home after his first tour of duty. He volunteered for the second. GWB didn’t even go to Vietnam. Who?

    You get somebody who fakes it, uses it to come home early and then calls everyone else a chicken hawk? Son, you’ve got a real problem on your hands.

    Who? Did John Kerry ever call anyone a chickenhawk? Even those who actually avoided service or deployment to wars they might have been involved in, do not have children in the armed forces, and start wars because they like them and therefore deserve the name haven’t had JK call them that to the best of my knowledge. GWB might be calling Cheney or Rush a chickenhawk, but I doubt it. So who?

    Who is John O’Neill? What’s his (probably single-issue) agenda? Why are we hearing his perfectly irrelevant opinion?

  2. Phelps says:

    It’s all in the article. Like I said, RTWT. Then fly off the handle.

    It isn’t like that was the only angle presented. They gave a lot of space to Veterans for Kerry also, but the focus of the article was the Swift Boat skippers.

    And I don’t think that Kerry has released the medical records regarding his Purple Hearts. If he did so, he did it recently. The only think he has released are cherry-picked FITREPs. Kerry did not take two tours in country; he was in country for four months of a 12 month in-country tour.

  3. smijer says:

    He did serve two tours, but only one on the swift-boats in combat. His first tour of duty was on the USS Gridley. His second tour of duty was ended when he opted to go home after his third Heart. I’m sorry I’m not familiar with the initials RTWT… I guess I’m too new to the blogosphere… I was replying only to the part of the article that was quoting O’Neill and his gross misrepresentation of Kerry’s record on several points.

  4. Phelps says:

    RTWT = Read The Whole Thing, usually applied after a teaser snip of the article cited.

  5. “Gonzo” Gonzalez is a Libertarian — he’s actually running for office. No simpering liberal, he…

    http://www.johngonzalez4congress.com/

    I thought the article was pretty fair, given it’s provenance. Gonz usually writes about sports, too.

  6. Phelps says:

    Yeah, if I recall correctly he’s from Philly. Didn’t know he was running, though, or even that he was a Libertarian, and I think I am still on the party records as a member. You think they would, you know, try to get the actual PARTY MEMEBERS informed on who the candidates are.

  7. Yes, Philly — and described by One Who Knows as a “pure-dee Philly thug.” He tried to pick a fight with Carl Everett last year.

    The “run” is obviously one of those joke-ish thing that bored journos do on a whim. Let me rephrase that — “tired, overdone, joke-ish”.

  8. smijer says:

    I agree that Gonzales does a good job in the article. My complaint is with O’Neill’s unsubstantiated smears…

  9. Phelps says:

    Well, perhaps my opinion is colored from hearing so many similar things from other Vietnam Vets about Kerry’s story. I have a cousin who was a Ranger who served in Vietnam and got two purple hearts and a bronze star. He was in-country two days. His account of it is, “I was transporting a prisoner (American murderer) when the convoy was attacked. Jeep ran off the road, we both fell out. I scraped my back (Purple Heart) and twisted my knee (Purple Heart). The prisoner got up to run, and I pulled my 45 on him and told him, ‘you run and I’ll shoot you in the back.’ (Bronze Star for not losing the prisoner.)”

    Maybe there is more to his story than he tells me, but I’ve talked to four guys with Bronze Stars, and none of them want to treat it like a big deal. Kerry, on the other hand, wants to make a ton of political hay with it. None of the vets I’ve talked to think that the story from the Swift Boat captains is implausible (and one of them was Jug Burkett, who wrote the book on war liars — literally.)

    Like I’ve said before lots of times, I have more than enough problems with Kerry’s Senate record, so I have no reason to worry about his service record. That doesn’t mean that I am going to ignore the story, though.