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chelaque liberal Donating Member (981 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-29-04 07:43 AM
Original message
Can anyone help me with this Kerry bashing email from co-worker?
I get this kind of thing frequently from a someone who is senior to me. I would like to be able to respond intelligently. Can anyone answer any of the accusations this jerk is making?

Message Let's get the record straight on John Kerry.


My wife had rotator cuff surgery earlier this year, and the recovery is terribly painful. Then, she developed a staph-epi infection, and they had to cut the same scar open and operate on her again. Just thinking about the pain and anxiety of facing that painful surgery a second time in the same wound, makes me cringe. That experience, however pales in comparison to what I am going through right now, in my heart.

The old hurts are surfacing and the feelings of betrayal by fellow citizens, and their leader stirring them up, are breaking my heart again. I am being cut in the same scar. How did we who served in Vietnam suddenly become cold-blooded killers, torturers, and rapists, of the ilk of the Nazi SS or the Taliban? Most of us were American soldiers who grew up idolizing John Wayne, Roy Rogers, and all the other heroes. That was why I volunteered. But for political expediency, John Kerry has rewritten history, again. After spending only four months in the country of Vietnam, John Kerry testified before Congress in 1971 with these exact words about incidents he supposedly witnessed or heard about from other vets: "They personally raped, cut off ears, cut off heads, taped wires from portable telephones to human genitals and turned up the power, cut off limbs, blown up bodies, randomly shot at civilians, razed villages, shot cattle and dogs for fun, poisoned food stocks, and generally ravaged the countryside of South Vietnam."

I was a green beret officer who volunteered for duty in Vietnam and fought in the thick of it in 1968 and 1969 on a Special Forces A-team on the Ho Chi Minh Trail, just for starters. We were the elite. We saw the most action. Everybody in the world knows that. But we did not just kill people, we built a church, a school, treated illnesses, passed out soap, food, and clothing, and had fun and loving interaction with the indigenous people of Vietnam, just like our boys did in Normandy, Baghdad, Saigon, and everywhere American soldiers ever served. We all gave away our candy bars and rations to kids. Our hearts to oppressed people all over the globe.

My children and grandchildren could read your words, and think those horrendous things about me, Mr. Kerry. You are a bold-faced, unprincipled liar, and a disgrace, and you have dishonored me and all my fellow Vietnam veterans. Sure, there were a couple bad-apples, but I saw none, and I saw it all, and if I did, as an army officer, it was my obligation to stop it, or at the very least report it. Why is there not a single record anywhere of you ever reporting any incidents like this or having the perpetrators arrested? The answer is simple. You are a liar. Your medals and mine are not a free pass for lifetime, Senator Kerry, to bypass character, integrity, and morality. I earn my green beret over and over daily in all aspects of my life.

Eight National Guard green berets, and other National Guard soldiers, have been killed in Iraq and Afghanistan, and you totally dishonored their widows and families by lumping National Guard service in with being a draft-dodger, conscientious objector, and deserter, just so you can try to sabotage the patriotism of our President who proudly served as an Air National Guard jet pilot. I have a son earning his green beret at Fort Bragg right now, and his wife serves honorably in the Air National Guard, just like President Bush did, and I am as proud of her as I am my son. I volunteered for Vietnam and have no problem whatsoever with President Bush being our Commander-In-Chief. In fact, I am proud of him as our leader.

John Kerry, you personally derailed the Vietnam Human Rights Bill, HR2883, in 2001, after it had passed the House by a 411 to 1 vote, and thousands of pro-American Montagnard tribes people in Vietnam died since then who could have been saved, by you. Earlier, as Chair of the Senate Select Committee on MIA/POW Affairs, you personally quashed the efforts of any and all veterans to report sightings of living POW's, when you held those reins in Congress. You have fought tooth and nail to push for the US to normalize relations with Vietnam for years. Why, Mr. Kerry? Simple, your first cousin C. Stewart Forbes, CEO, of Colliers International, recently signed a contract with Hanoi, worth BILLIONS of dollars for Collier's International to become the exclusive real estate representative for the country of Vietnam.

"Hanoi John," now that it works for you, you beat your chest about your Vietnam service, but to me, you are a phony, opportunistic, hypocrite. You are one of those politicians that is like a fertilizer machine: all that comes out of you is horse manure, and you are spreading it everywhere.

Medals do not make a man. Morals do.

Don Bendell
Canon City, Colorado

Don Bendell served as an officer in four Special Forces Groups, is a best-selling author with over 1,500,000 books in print, a 1995 inductee into the International Karate Hall of Fame, and owns karate schools in southern Colorado.

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Kamika Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-29-04 07:52 AM
Response to Original message
1. heh
I'm sorry I can't help you... I grew tired of the mail from the first moment I saw it.
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DrFunkenstein Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-29-04 07:52 AM
Response to Original message
2. Wasn't This Posted In GD2004 Awhile Back?
I vaguely remember going out of my way to respond thoroughly to this exact post. I'm not up for going over the whole thing all over again, but maybe this'll help.

The possibility of killing innocent civilians haunted Kerry. With many of the South Vietnamese waterways in ''free fire zones'' - meaning that the US Navy was authorized to shoot anyone who was violating a curfew - the likelihood that innocent villagers could be killed was high.

Kerry said he was appalled that the Navy's ''free fire zone'' policy put civilians at such high risk. So, on Jan. 22, 1969, Kerry and several dozen fellow skippers and officers traveled to Saigon to complain about the policy in an extraordinary meeting with Zumwalt and the overall commander of the war, General Creighton W. Abrams Jr.

''We were fighting the free fire policy very, very hard, to the point that many of the members were refusing to carry out orders on some of their missions, to the point where crews were starting to mutiny, to say, `I would not go back in the rivers again,''' Kerry recalled during a 1971 television appearance on the Dick Cavett Show.

But Kerry went back in the rivers. Indeed, it was after this meeting that he began his most deadly round of combat. Within days of the Saigon meeting, he joined a five-man crew on swift boat No. 94 on a series of missions in which he won the Silver Star, the Bronze Star, and two of his three Purple Hearts. Starting in late January 1969, this crew completed 18 missions over an intense and dangerous 48 days, almost all of them in the dense jungles of the Mekong Delta.

The most intense action came during an extraordinary eight days of more than 10 firefights, remembered by Kerry's crew as the "days of hell."

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rfranklin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-29-04 07:55 AM
Response to Original message
3. Kerry did not say National Guard service was same as AWOL...
Unless this guy can back up that statement up with something other than creative writing, it's B.S. Wingnuts like this sort jump from the truth--Bush skipped out on his obligation due to a drug arrest or simple lack of interest--which Kerry and other have pointed out, to a fantastic accusation of smearing all National Guard reservists. Never happened--it's a RNC talking point which Bush himself tried to use and it went nowhere beyond the hothouse of rightwing hate radio.
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Lab Owner Donating Member (51 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-29-04 08:25 AM
Response to Reply #3
7. This is the quote they're referring to

"I've never made any judgments about any choice somebody made about avoiding the draft, about going to Canada, going to jail, being a conscientious objector, going into the National Guard. Those are choices people make," Kerry said.

To the extremely touchy, it could be construed as lumping NG service with deserting to avoid the draft.

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mikehiggins Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-29-04 09:25 AM
Response to Reply #7
10. Well, duh, that's exactly what it was.
Just like volunteering for the Coast Guard. If you were likely to be sent to places where they were shooting at you, and you didn't want to go to Canada, some sort of "sorta service" was a lot better than wearing a target on your back.

Why else would Poppa George have to use his influence to get Baby George into the Air National Guard? There were a lot of college grads looking to find a safe haven, and a weekend a month on a training flight looks a lot better than 24/7, 365 days a year, getting your ass shot at.

Do you really think that most of the present day National Guard troopers really thought they'd be spending 2004 in IRAQ???? If they had, do you really think half or more of them would have joined up in the first place?

Take a look at the reenlistment numbers. The answer it in there.
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Clark4Prez Donating Member (507 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-29-04 09:40 AM
Response to Reply #7
11. Colin Powell on National Guard Service

"I am angry that so many of the sons of the powerful and well placed ... managed to wangle slots in Reserve and National Guard units," Secretary of State Colin Powell wrote in his memoirs. "Of the many tragedies of Vietnam, this raw class discrimination strikes me as the most damaging to the ideal that all Americans are created equal and owe equal allegiance to their country."

We need to pound this quote down the throat of the right wing Kerry bashers. Is Powell "denigrating the Guard" by his statements?

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comsymp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-29-04 11:18 AM
Response to Reply #11
16. Two other helpful quotes
"I was not prepared to shoot my eardrum out with a shotgun in order to get a deferment. Nor was I willing to go to Canada. So I chose to better myself by learning how to fly airplanes." GWB, 1994 Houston Cronk Interview

"I do -- I do -- I do -- I do -- what any normal person would do at that age. You call home. You call home to mother and father and say, `I'd like to get into the National Guard.'" -- Quayle, 8/19/88 (reported in Esquire, 8/92)
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Thucydides Donating Member (71 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-29-04 08:07 AM
Response to Original message
4. Ask him what he thinks about Senator McCain.....
then throw this at him....
McCain defends Kerry, calls detractor 'despicable'

By Michael Janofsky

The New York Times

WASHINGTON - Sen. John McCain defended a fellow Vietnam War veteran Friday by attacking the credibility of a North Carolina veteran who has dedicated himself to defeating Sen. John Kerry in his presidential campaign.

McCain, R-Ariz., called Ted Sampley "one of the most despicable people I have ever had the misfortune to encounter."

Sampley, a businessman from Kinston, N.C., has gained attention for operating a Web site devoted to attacking Kerry for his opposition to the war in Vietnam after his military service.<snip

You can also use this to ask him if this is what he prefers as an alternative to Kerry....
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newyawker99 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-29-04 10:17 AM
Response to Reply #4
13. Hi Thucydides!!
Welcome to DU!! :toast:
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sangha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-29-04 08:19 AM
Response to Original message
5. Rotator cuff surgery leaves tiny scars
I also just had rotator cuff surgery, nad it is now done laproscopically. That means they cut tiny little slits in your shoulder and insert small tubes (laprocopes) into the openings. One of the laprocopes has a camera, and another had a laser which they used to cut the tendons and cartilege with. It left me with three small slits in my shoulder. I've done more damage to myself shaving.

As far as refuting the content of the letter, others have told you about that.
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DrRang Donating Member (415 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-29-04 08:21 AM
Response to Original message
6. Well, there's Tiger Force, and My Lai . . .
Quite a bit was written a couple of months ago about Vietnam atrocities committed by an outfit called Tiger Force. Several guys admitted stuff. And you might recommend "War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning" This incredible book by Chris Hedges digs into the psychology of war fever.
And yeah, a guy in our local paper was spouting the line about how questioning Bush's NG term amounts to slurring the National Guard. What a crock. One answer is that if Bush hadn't done his cheesy Mission Accomplished strut, the matter woulden't have come up again. Another is, "Wonder why all the Repub. leadership except Colin Powell managed somehow to avoid battle?" Another is, "Democrats are no more blaming the National Guard for Bush's shortcomings than REpubs are blaming Gulf War I for Timothy McVeigh." (Doesn't make sense but it sounds good.)
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Thucydides Donating Member (71 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-29-04 08:28 AM
Response to Reply #6
8. Thanks for reminding me Dr.Rang, I almost forgot about this
It has more good ammo about all the chickenhawks in the Bush admin that avoided even going to Vietnam. At least you can say that Kerry was there!
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rfranklin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-29-04 08:46 AM
Response to Reply #6
9. Powell was one of those greedy minorities who took Tom DeLay's slot
during Vietnam. Those lucky duckies got all the glory and Tom had to kill bugs instead of VC.
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TorchTheWitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-29-04 09:51 AM
Response to Original message
12. well... here's an idea
Don't respond. Why is this idiot even sending this shit to a co-worker anyway? Are you expected to give a crap about their personal political beliefs? Isn't the workplace for... eh... work? Since this person is senior to you, wouldn't this email be considered intimidation? That you must agree with the opinions posed in the emails at the risk of being "punished" at work? Isn't this a form of harrassment?

Simple... take the email to a supervisory person that is senior to the jerk and tell them you find it offensive that he's sending you this kind of stuff, and he shouldn't anyway as it has nothing to do with work. He is using work time for personal reasons, forcing you to look at his personal crap since you have to open an email from a co-worker (sadly, one can't put a co-worker on "ignore"), and it forces you to waste your time at work having to open/read/respond to his personal emails. Don't companies frown on using company time and company equipment for personal reasons especially if those reasons are found to be harrassing/intimidating in nature?
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cpa Donating Member (281 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-29-04 10:31 AM
Response to Original message
14. Logic
I was very close at the time to a Marine who served in Vietnam. Incicdents like Kerry described did occur-whether the writer wants to admit it or not. The war was a tragic mistake.
Bush was admitted to the National Guard because of his privileged status. he may have been AWOL for part of the time. he only went in to avoid Vietnam.
Bush has been a failure as commander-in-chief. Bush was warned on August 6, 2001 about hijackers of planes and failed to take the steps necessary to tighten security at our airports. Bush and Tom DeLay failed to enact proposed legislation that would have resulted in our airports having tighter security measures. As a result, 9/11 occurred. What does this Green Beret have to say about that.
Bush weakened our national security by failing at the battle of Tora Bora and by mishandling Iraq. This ex-Green Beret is not looking at things properly.
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zulchzulu Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-29-04 10:32 AM
Response to Original message
15. Dittohead Green Beret with multiple head injuries perhaps?
Edited on Sun Feb-29-04 10:47 AM by zulchzulu
First of all, HR2883 is an Intelligence Authorization bill with absolutely nothing to do with POWs.

Secondly, lumping all that served or are serving in the National Guard has nothing to do with George Bush not serving his term in the National Guard. That's been a ruse that pill-poppin' Rush Limp Pole has been saying recently.

Earth to Bendell: Bush disgraces all who served honorably in the National Guard.

Thirdly, as soon as you see someone refer to Kerry as "Hanoi John", you can guess they have been listening to the completely inaccurate charges and uber-demonization of Kerry by the Pill Popper.

As for Kerry's statements about US soldiers committing war crimes, there is plenty of evidence that they did. Remember the My Lai massacre?

Bendell can vote for a lying AWOL chickenhawk if he wants. That's democracy.

The letter is hardly an email from one guy to another. It's no Snooze Max and other sites. If you want to see the author's ugly site, here it is:
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comsymp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-29-04 11:21 AM
Response to Original message
17. Additional info on Kerry's "lies" and accusations about war crimes
Google "VVAW Winter Soldier 1971"

Kerry's testimony make it crystal clear that the allegations he made during the Senate hearings were from testimony given by 150 soldiers & civilians who either committed or witnessed these acts. Nice spin by the author to imply that Kerry was the one who made the stuff up- especially the part about "why didn't you report the incidents you witnessed?"
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