The Naked Emperor

06 September 2004

Military Blunders

6 September 2004

A great deal has been made about the Vietnam war lately. Especially by the democratic candidate for president. Now without trying to re-fight a thirty year old war, this whole episode is rather troubling.

Many claim Lt. Bush was AWOL from the Alabama Air Guard from December 1972 to March 1973, or his entire service there, depending upon the sources. Was he? I don't know. And don't care. But why?

It happened thirty years ago, that's why. It has not shown any bearing on his conduct as governor or president. Other than the "seven minutes" on 9/11, has he been missing from either position? No.

Lt (jg) Kerry's record in the service is also questionable. Did he lie? Maybe. Possibly. Did he inflate his own importance? Almost certainly. Is it important? Yes. Is it a double standard? No. But why?

Lt. Bush did not make his National Guard record the centerpiece of his campaign. Lt (jg) Kerry did. And that reflects on his judgment, not thirty years ago, but right now.

Lt (jg) Kerry, upon his release from active duty, said many things about his fellow veterans. He accused them of not serving honorably, of being murderers and war criminals. Lt (jg) Kerry gets very upset when someone questions his military service. The millions of veterans who served in Vietnam likewise are upset when accused of dishonorable service and atrocities. Yet he has not apologized for his youthful charges, and maintains his position. So he makes the centerpiece of his campaign something guaranteed to raise strong negative emotions in millions of voters. That is not good judgment.

When Kerry's positions or service are challenged, his staff members have pointed out that Kerry served in combat, but Lt. Bush only served in the National Guard. Millions more veterans have served in Guard and Reserve with honor and distinction. They have taken care of us at home (see the Guardsmen who are now on duty in the hurricane's wake), and have fought and died in every major war for the last century. Now Kerry's people question the validity of their service. Again, this is bound to piss off lots of voters. Poor judgment.

According to the polls, the RNC convention was relatively successful. Immediately afterwards, Senator Kerry went on the attack. He accused Vice President Cheney of attacking his patriotism. I watched Cheney's speech, he didn't. Then the Senator talked about Cheney getting five deferments during Vietnam.

Many people wished to avoid going to war during that time for many reasons. Now the Senator implies that they are unfit for office. That's million's more voters potentially pissed off. Bad judgment.

So to sum up, if you served during Vietnam, you're a murderer. If you've ever been in the reserves, that doesn't count, your service is meaningless. And if you sought not to go, you're a coward. One hell of a way to gather support for your candidacy. This is definitely the way to build strong alliances, but only to oppose you.

Senator Kerry chose to focus on Vietnam. Did he not know that his maligning of his "Band of Brothers" would raise strong emotion? Is he that out of touch? And when that comes to light, he chose to annoy not only those who didn't serve in Vietnam, but all the reservists and reservist veterans too boot? What does that say about your abilities?

This can of worms was opened when the Senator and his running mate told us to ask those who served with him. While most of his subordinates support him, his peers and superiors almost totally do not. Kerry's negatives started rising. His polls started falling. Is this the work of the "vast right wing conspiracy"? No, only Kerry's message. As the fall continued, he has grown increasingly more desperate, maligning all reservists, and now those who chose not to serve,

If the Senator is elected, would he run the country the same way? Would he seek to castigate ever increasing numbers of decent Americans when his own mouth is the cause of the trouble? And is this the kind of judgment we want our chief executive to have?

As a moderate conservative, I believe in a healthy multi-party system for our republic. In that spirit, I offer Senator Kerry some sage redneck advice. When you're in a hole, the first thing to do is STOP DIGGING.

Until Later,

The Naked Emperor


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