Kerry Says He’s Prepared to Fight the Swift Boat Liars

I’m not sure why this is news today. Kerry says the record shows that the charges from The Swift Boat Liars were false. The claims have been disputed to the point where only partisan Republicans, who care little about reality, are going to believe them and those who still believe these lies are not going to change their minds regardless of how much evidence is presented. From The Patriot Ledger:

John Kerry said Monday there might be a next time for his presidential aspirations, and if there is, the 63-year-old U.S. senator from Massachusetts says he’ll be ready for the political torpedoes that helped sink his 2004 White House bid.

Kerry, whose service as a U.S. Navy Swift boat skipper during the Vietnam War came under attack in his race against President Bush, said he has compiled a dossier on his war record critics that he wishes he had as the Democratic presidential nominee.

“We have put together a documented portfolio that frankly puts their lies in such a total light of absurdity and indecency, that should they ever rear their ugly heads again, we have every single ‘t’ crossed and ‘i’ dotted, and I welcome that in a sense,” Kerry said following a morning address to the South Shore Chamber fo Commerce. “It’s a shame we weren’t able to produce all that at the time.”

Kerry said he regrets his slowness to counter accusations from the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, which faulted Kerry’s war record and his subsequent anti-war activism.
“I think the bigger problem was the campaign should have spent more money putting the truth out there,” Kerry said. “I think there was an assumption that is was out there, it was sufficiently out there.”

While Kerry is sitting out the 2008 presidential election n he’s instead focusing on his own his race next year for a sixth term as U.S. senator n he expects he’d be dogged by the same war record critics in a subsequent race for the White House.

“I have no doubt at all that some of the people involved on the other side don’t care about the truth, think nothing about distorting it, will not hesitate to say and do whatever they think is necessary to win,” Kerry said. “But I think we are now much more prepared and savvy about those kind of things, and certainly in my own involvement, I will make certain that people don’t get away with that.”

Kerry said he regretted that the term “swift boating” has taken on the meaning of a political attack, but that such attacks have become a part of national politics.

“I hate to see the term become a negative term in American politics, it is what is is,” he said. “Would those same tactics be used against people? Sure, absolutely.”

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7 Comments

  1. 1
    Tom Maguire says:

    The claims have been disputed to the point where only partisan Republicans, who care little about reality, are going to believe them and those who still believe these lies are not going to change their minds regardless of how much evidence is presented.

    Then I am sure you can help me with a bit of a puzzle surrounding Kerry’s first Purple Heart.

    Kerry claims he was in a skimmer with two sailors, Zaladonis and Runyon. Since these “skimmer ops” were pretty ad hoc, Runyon and Kerry went there separate ways; Zaladonis, however, was on kerry’s first crew, PCF-44, for about two months starting a couple of days after the dramatic skimmer op which represented Kerry’s first combat and his first medal. Kerry, Zaladonis, and Runyon all describe the operation as one of the most memorable of their Vietnam tours.

    And yet – Zaladonis was interviewed by both Douglas Brinkley and the Boston Globe in 2003 (Brinkley for “Tour of Duty”, the Globe for a Kerry profile as his Presidential candidacy heated up.) But somehow Zaladonis never mentioned to anyone that he was part of Kerry’s first medal. Odd? Or just miserable interview technique by the Globe and Runyon? In any case, Zaladonis finally remembered his role when Kerry’s story came under attack in early 2004.

    Kerry also kept a diary, his “War Notes”. Yet, although Brinkley relied on them extensively for other incidents, he never referred to them for Kerry’s contemporaneous account of his first medal. Odd?

    Compounding the confusion – Admiral Schachte (Ret.), then a mere Lieutenant and Chief Exec of Kerry’s unit, claimes he originated the skimmer ops concept and led Kerry’s mission, so the roster was Schachte, Kerry, and one sailor.

    Baffling. One might almost wonder whether Zaladonis (who appeared at the 2004 Dem Convention as one of the Band of Brothers) misremembered his involvement. Impossible? Hardly – another of the Band (Alston, IIRC) eventually admitted that he had not actually been present for Kerry’s Silver Star, although he lauded Kerry’s heroism in a first-person, I-was-there account.

    But never fear! Brinkley and the Globe have probed this carefully, right? Of course not – they have never done a story even noting this oddity, yet alone attempting to resolve it. Of course, a story describing how they were gulled may not be their highest priority, and it is my impression that none of their liberal readers are interested in exploring the possibility that maybe Kerry was not fully supported by the facts in the Swift debacle. Your post can be taken as evidence.

    Or perhaps you have your own explanation of the Zaladonis puzzle?

  2. 2
    Ron Chusid says:

    You’re really going to try to cite this nonsense yet again? You got it a bit mixed up as to who was there and who turned out not to have been there.

    Schachte refused to sign an affidavit as to his story. The servicemen on the boat that night say they never say Schachte there. I wonder where Schachte managed to hide from everyone else on that little skimmer boat. There is no “Zaladonis puzzle.” The Swirties were lying.

    Schachte’s claims in 2004 also contradicted an interview he gave in 2003, while Zaladonis has been consistent in his story. Incidentally, Schachte both endorsed and contributed to George Bush.

  3. 3
    natthedem says:

    I’m glad he’s fighting back…I wish he’d done it three years ago when it counted.

  4. 4
    richi says:

    If Kerry would have been elected President this last election.We the Great U.S.A.wouldn’t be in the mess we are in now..I voted for Kerry.If you voted for Bush,look at what you did to yourself and me..TEXAS BORN and getting poorer..

  5. 5
    matchpoint says:

    Tom Maguire @1:
    “But somehow Zaladonis never mentioned to anyone that he was part of Kerry’s first medal. Odd? Or just miserable interview technique by the Globe and Runyon? ”
    First, care to explain exactly how Zaladonis would independently know in 2003 that Kerry won a medal for that action?

    Second, you know he was asked by Kranish or Brinkley in 2003 because …. ?  You know that Kranish or Brinkley would think to ask Zaladonis about a separate mission because … ?
    Oh, that’s right, you don’t.
    ———————–
    “Kerry also kept a diary, his “War Notes”. Yet, although Brinkley relied on them extensively for other incidents, he never referred to them for Kerry’s contemporaneous account of his first medal. Odd?”
    How do you know he didn’t rely on them?  You mean because he didn’t quote from Kerry’s journal in describing every story in a 460 page book?  My, that IS odd!
     
     

  6. 6
    Funkool says:

    If Kerry was elected, Saddam would still be alive; there would have several more 9/11 style attacks, and we would have had less economic growth from 2002 to 2007.
     
    Also instead of the top 5% of income earners paying 57% of all income tax revenue, they probably would be paying 60%.
     
    Would Kerry have had increased domestic oil drilling & refining? I think he might have created a national shoe of flip-flops.
     
    There’s not much else, Bush has been sub-par.

  7. 7
    Ron Chusid says:

    Funkook,

    You really do drink the right wing kool aide.

    It was Kerry who was warning of the dangers of terrorism long before 9/11, when Bush was ignoring the warnings. It was under Bush, not any Democrat, that the attack occurred.

    Saddam had already been removed, so his fate was irrelevant.

    Flip-flops? The whole flip-flop story was because of right wingers who distorted his positions, then called it a flip-flop when his actual views did not match the right wing distortions.

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