Republicans Start Opening Their Kerry Dirt File

Revealed: how 'war hero' Kerry tried to put off Vietnam military duty. Note the one-two-three punch here: First the suggestion that Kerry was just an uncessesful draft dodger; Second, the suggestion that his medals are somehow not real or significant; Third the quote from Lucianne Goldberg (yes, the one who betrayed Lewinsky), a nice way to try to tie Democrats to sleaze.

Why this item starts in a foreign paper is hard to figure…maybe because the UK's Telegraph, a very conservative paper, is most likely to report it uncritically?

Senator John Kerry … tried to defer his military service for a year, according to a newly rediscovered article in a Harvard University newspaper.

He wrote to his local recruitment board seeking permission to spend a further 12 months studying in Paris, after completing his degree course at Yale University in the mid-1960s. …

The Harvard Crimson newspaper followed a youthful Mr Kerry in Boston as he campaigned for Congress for the first time in 1970. In the course of a lengthy article, “John Kerry: A Navy Dove Runs for Congress”, published on February 18, the paper reported: “When he approached his draft board for permission to study for a year in Paris, the draft board refused and Kerry decided to enlist in the Navy.”

Samuel Goldhaber, the article's author who is now a cardiologist attached to the Harvard School of Medicine, spent 11 hours trailing Mr Kerry and still remembers that the subject of the Paris deferment came up during long conversations about Vietnam.

“I stand by my story,” he told The Telegraph. “It was a long time ago, and I was 19 at the time, so it is hard to remember every detail. But I do know this: at no point did Kerry contact either me or the Crimson to dispute anything I had written.”

Sen Kerry's campaign headquarters in Washington refused an opportunity to deny the report. Despite repeated telephone calls from The Telegraph, a spokesman refused to comment. Another Democrat official said merely: “In Vietnam, John Kerry proved his patriotism beyond question. Everyone knows that.”

A senior Republican strategist, who asked not to be named, said: “I've not heard this before. This undercuts Kerry's complaints about Bush and it continues to pose questions as to his credibility among ordinary Vietnam veterans.”

Note the mark of the true black arts professional: the word “continues”. There is nothing on which this builds, but the speaker has anonymously made a charge which can't be refuted, since it's vague, nor can it be used to question the speaker's credibility since it's provided anonymously.

He said it would fuel concerns over the way Sen Kerry made a name for himself by leading anti-war protests in Washington and Boston in the late 1960s and early 1970s after he had completed his service in the US Navy, even while his former comrades continued to fight and die.

The nerve of the man! Trying to end the war so his comrades could come home! How dare he!

A newly-published biography of Sen Kerry by Douglas Brinkley, A Tour of Duty, makes no mention of the requested deferment or planned year in Paris. At the time, it was still unclear just how long America would remain in Vietnam, and it might have seemed that a year's deferral of service could render enlistment unnecessary.

According to the Democratic Party's version of Sen Kerry's military history, he joined the Reserve Officer Training Corps at Harvard through eagerness to do his duty, and sailed with the Navy for combat as soon as he graduated in 1966.

Sen Kerry won a gallantry medal for his service as a gunboat captain on the Mekong Delta, and was honorably discharged with three “purple heart” medals after sustaining three wounds. He has consistently presented himself as a leader who argued against the war only after fulfilling his duty in the field. Supporters argue that his war record makes him a more trustworthy leader than President Bush, who served sporadically in the National Guard at home.

A little partisan jab…

“This means that Kerry didn't jump into all that heroic service until he was pushed, and it is a very nice piece of information,” said Lucianne Goldberg, a prominent Republican campaigner.

And here's the final slur

Republican strategists for President Bush were already investigating Sen Kerry's record of three wounds sustained in Vietnam. “We find that he had only one day off sick – with three wounds? What exactly were these wounds?” she asked.

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8 Responses to Republicans Start Opening Their Kerry Dirt File

  1. ROB says:


  2. Chris says:

    This was a dangerous topic for the Repubs to open and keep revisiting–every time they do so, it serves to remind voters of Bush’s (if one wants to say it nicely) utterly undistinguished military service and Kerry’s heroism and courage both on and off the battlefield. I can only guess that there must be some closet liberals posing themselves “Republicans” and doing their worst to make the Republicans appear stupid and cynical.

    The moral: never smear someone if in doing so it will spotlight your own inadequacies all the more glaringly.

  3. rich says:

    Kerry is courageous. Bush is a coward. Don’t need to say more, since the records speak for themselves, BUT I WILL. Anyone who has ever had a bullet… one… fired at them with malicious intent knows that Kerry is a hero, out and out. He faced many in order to save a buddy.

    I know Bush was one of those privileged pussies whose daddy got him out. Here’s the pain for me. In the fall of 1965, I was working while going to school full time because my parents couldn’t afford to send me to college. (My father was a retired NYC fireman, and a traumatized (severely alchoholic and nicotine addicted) South Pacific Island hopping WWII Marine Corps hero.) I had just dropped a chem course which I was worried about failing. This took me from 15 to 11 credits. I figured this would be okay, because I’d increase my hours at work, save up a bit more , then work less and hit it hard the next semester. 2 weeks after I dropped the course, the draft was initiated and I received my notice.

    So… here we have a simple, lower middle class, inexperienced but sincere college student trying hard to make it work. Can you imagine the feeling of being (you thought) a college student one day, and a soldier in a war you did not support the next? Can you image the feeling of my parents (Dad, the war hero as well as Mom, the war bride) when their boy went off to the war?

    At the very same time, it was beginning to become clear that not all were equal in consideration for front-line duty. While some privileged ones did volunteer out of a sense of duty (KERRY) most others did what they could to avoid. I won’t waste time teaching you about Bush’s path to the Air Nat’l Guard, but lets just say that path was not and would never be open to me or others like me.

    Freedom of speech allows you to say what your mind is, but I’m free to say… If you support Bush and are confused about the issues of cowardice and heroism, that I can only hope your child is drafted and sent to the Oil Wars in the Middle East. We need more of YOU there, because a significant % of you WILL change your minds and hearts when the reality of bullets becomes more clear.

  4. Keith says:

    Where does is state that the President of the United States has to be a war hero?
    Please, direct me to the documentation…

    Seems kind of odd that John F. Kerry (JFK), only enlisted after attempting to skirt the draft for a year…

    Who knows, after that year was up maybe he would have applied for another year and another and another, until the war was over…

    Sure is odd that someone that protested so intensely against the war after he got back was so eager (only after being denied a 12 month postponement) to enlist and go to war…

    This must have been the beginning of John Kerry’s “changing of the mind syndrome”, a syndrome so stealth John Kerry himself doesn’t see it. Not to mention his followers.

    Seeing John Kerry during the debates brings other celebrities to mind…Donny Osmond and Michael Jackson…they also attempted to persuade the people with smiling teeth and shit slinging. It worked until the truth finally came out…The same goes for John Kerry…he is full of BULLSHIT… a classy shit slinger who married money…twice!!!

    Back to the war hero crap…

    Doesn’t take a war hero to make a good President…

    What it does take is no BULLSHIT, standing your ground, and standing up against threats to YOUR FREEDOM…and not trying to BULLSHIT your way through…

    I was brought up to vote for the best man for the job…

    GEORGE BUSH is that man…

  5. Melissa says:

    Democrats are pushy, rude, ignorant, and prejudice/racist major time. Try selecting a leader in the next election instead of a follower! Senator Hillary Clinton could have ran a better campaign!

  6. Jonathan says:

    Democrats are pushy, rude, ignorant, and prejudice/racist major time. Try selecting a leader in the next election instead of a follower! Senator Hillary Clinton could have ran a better campaign!


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