For those of you keeping score at home, there are 6 new versions of Kerry’s Christmas in Cambodia story. As implausible as it seems, 5 of them are from a single press release from the Kerry campaign.
The 6th version is in the same Boston Globe story. (Which inexplicably did not mention that Kerry has now told over 18 versions of the story.)
The previous 9 versions of Kerry’s story can be found here.
“During John Kerry’s service in Vietnam, many times he was on or near the Cambodian border and on one occasion crossed into Cambodia at the request of members of a special operations group operating out of Ha Tien,” Kerry spokesman Michael Meehan said in a statement. The statement did not say when the cross-border mission took place.
So it was a CIA job right?
The anti-Kerry veterans have said Kerry’s recollection does not make sense because Nixon was not inaugurated until January 1969. But Kerry campaign spokesman Meehan said Kerry was referring to a range of time that included when Nixon was president-elect and president
I always blame Presidents for things that happen before they are President.
Kerry said in a 2003 interview that after the Christmas Eve 1968 engagement, he asked his crew to write a caustic telegram to the chief of naval forces in Vietnam, Elmo Zumwalt Jr., to wish him “Merry Christmas from the troops that weren’t in Cambodia, which was us. We were.”
That’s funny in his own diary he wrote that the telegram said “Merry Christmas from the most inland Market Time unit.” Wonder why he lied to his diary?
Meehan, in his statement issued last week, described the incident this way:
“On December 24, 1968, Lieutenant John Kerry and his crew were on patrol in the watery borders between Vietnam and Cambodia deep in enemy territory. In the early afternoon, Kerry’s boat, PCF-44, was at Sa Dec and then headed north to the Cambodian border. There, Kerry and his crew along with two other boats were ambushed, taking fire from both sides of the river, and after the firefight were fired upon again. Later that evening during their night patrol they came under friendly fire.”
I thought the friendly fire was IN Cambodia? The “watery borders between Vietnam and Cambodia” That is hardly the “five miles across the Cambodian border” that was “seared” into his brain.
Separately, according to Meehan’s statement, Kerry crossed into Cambodia on a covert mission to drop off special operations forces. In an interview, Meehan said there was no paperwork for such missions and he could not supply a date. That makes it hard to ascertain or confirm what happened.
Michael Medeiros, who served aboard the No. 94 with Kerry and appeared with him at the Democratic National Convention, vividly recalled an occasion on which Kerry and the crew chased an enemy to the Cambodian border but did not go beyond the border. Yet Medeiros said he could not recall dropping off special forces in Cambodia or going inside Cambodia with Kerry
Not a single crew member says they went into Cambodia.
Here’s a bit of advice for the Kerry campaign. If you want to be believed, try not to tell 5 versions of the same story in the same press release.