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Wizbang Media Alert

I'll be on WABC's Monica Crowley Show (770AM - New York) Saturday morning at 11:00AM Eastern. Blog readers (especially Jay Tea) will be happy to learn that Monica's guest host this weekend will none other than Michelle Malkin. Michelle's show will air from 10AM to 1PM Eastern.

Those of you outside of New York area can listen online via WABC's streaming audio feed.


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» Michelle Malkin linked with WHERE IN THE WORLD

Comments (10)

I'll see if I can find time... (Below threshold)
Boyd:

I'll see if I can find time in my busy Labor-Day-Weekend-Saturday-schedule to listen in.

MAN- Jay's talked to her...... (Below threshold)
Paul:

MAN- Jay's talked to her.... You've met her.... I emailed her once with something I was sure she wanted and I got ignored. (and I've linked her several times)

Life just ain't fair.

I'm going to go pout now.

"Lick it up, baby. Lick it ... (Below threshold)
Jay Tea:

"Lick it up, baby. Lick it up."

(It is my firm belief that nearly every situation in life can be addressed with a quote from "Heathers," "The Godfather," or "Buffy The Vampire Slayer." Paul, you lucked out and got the first.)

J.


Jay, you've got to ad "Offi... (Below threshold)

Jay, you've got to ad "Office Space" to that list.

Sorry, Fearless Leader, tha... (Below threshold)
Jay Tea:

Sorry, Fearless Leader, that movie always left me cold.

But maybe Wierd Al's "UHF?"

J.

I'm listening right now. If... (Below threshold)
McGroarty:

I'm listening right now. If you're reading comments on the break, don't forget to mention the Zell Miller Bush 41 vs Bush 43 speech as another bit that bloggers outed. Michelle and the listeners might appreciate that one.

http://www.blogsforbush.com/mt/archives/001926.html

Damn... I tried to get thro... (Below threshold)
Jay Tea:

Damn... I tried to get through from work, but couldn't. I was gonna ask if the Republican dancing was as horrifying in person as it was from home.

J.

I heard it all. Nicely don... (Below threshold)
Jim:

I heard it all. Nicely done.

John Kerry went to Vietnam ... (Below threshold)
Terry Sater:

John Kerry went to Vietnam for four and a half months. He came home with three controversial Purple Hearts for superficial wounds and a controversial Silver Star and Bronze Star. He joined the Vietnam Veterans Against the War and the Winter Soldiers movement. He threw away his medals and/or ribbons. He met with the enemy. He admitted to committing atrocities in Vietnam. He said everybody did, with the consent and direction of the entire chain of command.

Now, fast forward to today. He is campaigning, based on the fact that he is a war hero who served in Vietnam, who won the medals and/and or ribbons that he threw away. The cover of his book, "Tour of Duty" touts the "Saigon Warrior", with M-16 clips slung around his chest, looking much like a Marine, retaking Hue. Today, he only becomes indignant and defensive when anyone questions whether or not he earned the medals and/or ribbons he threw away. He ignores, or is silent on his admission of committing atrocities and his accusation that everyone he served with committed them. He also ignores and is silent on the suggestions that he sign the DOD form 180, which would authorize the Navy to release ALL of his records, which would settle once and for all, much of the controversy of his service in the U.S. Navy. I have heard three different types of defense from DNC spokesmen and liberal political pundits. At times, they say that John Kerry wasn't really accusing all of us of committing atrocities. He was simply reporting what others told him. Obviously, that defense doesn't work. He was very definitely accusing those who served in Vietnam of committing atrocities. The second defense is actually a very outrageous offense, saying that what Kerry said was true and IS true. In an attempt to protect their candidate, they are trying to ensure that the false testimony of their candidate is written into our country's history books. The third defense is to point out how "courageous" John Kerry was to be a lone voice that only wanted to stop the war and end the loss of lives of his comrades in arms. The truth is that he did not simply speak out against the war. He spoke out against the war, then added "Oh, by the way, all of our guys are raping, torturing, burning and murdering monsters!"

Today, he proclaims that HE would fight a more "thoughtful" war on terror, but he can't even write a thoughtful book. The candidate that admits to committing atrocities says that HE would fight a more "sensitive" war. It does not matter to most veterans whether he did, or did not earn his medals. Truth matters. Character matters. Honor matters.

I came across a website ( http://home.nycap.rr.com/pwcarter/the%20kerry%20page.html ) for some of the men who served with John Kerry on the frigate, USS Gridley. Phil Carter takes issue with a number of statements in "Tour of Duty". Mr. Carter's comments add to the errors and untruths I have identified in "Tour of Duty". It is full of distortions, inaccuracies, lies, mistakes, and exaggerations. As people who served in Vietnam, or with Kerry read the book, the list of inaccuracies in "Tour of Duty" will grow, even if John Kerry's nose does not. It is so full of distortions, "Fahrenheit 9/11" almost looks like a real documentary, if only by comparison.

From the Gridley website;
"Here are the comments of Phil Carter, RD2, on some of the items in the TOUR OF DUTY coverage of Kerry's time on GRIDLEY. He urges everyone to read it for themselves.

I was an E-5 radarman on the USS GRIDLEY and was onboard from 1965 until May of 1968. My principal role in 67 and 68 was to prepare intelligence information to brief the rescue helo pilots and the ship's officers. I received a commendation from CINCPACFLT for this activity. I stood quite a few CIC watches with Ensign Kerry where we discussed many things, including the war. I was college educated, had traveled extensively in Europe before the Navy and spoke French, so there was some commonality despite my being enlisted. By that time, I was on my 3rd cruise and against the way the war was being waged. He was not, as I recall.

I am a registered independent and have no axe to grind with him. I gave him a reasonably large campaign contribution in the mid 1990's and visited with him for about 30 minutes in an alcove outside the Senate chambers in 1996 when I was in DC on business.

Ensign Kerry was a fine young officer. He came aboard as a boot Ensign on June 8, 1967 and quickly impressed the senior officers in his chain of command. His fitness reports were outstanding. His privileged upbringing with experience in yachting and flying a private plane gave him a leg up on the other Ensigns.

When I read "Tour of Duty", I became concerned because the material on Kerry's time on GRIDLEY appeared in many instances to be exaggerations and in some cases figments of an overactive imagination.

Here are my observations on the sections that bothered me:
1. Kerry never talked about his time on GRIDLEY. He says on page 74 that it is because "nothing much of note" happened while he was onboard. He uses words like monotony and tedious, when, despite being a boot ensign he was given every opportunity for responsibility by Captain Slifer and Commander Kelly (XO). He came aboard designated for Electrical Officer (80100), a grunt position in the Engineering Department and spent four months in that position. He was assigned duty as First Lieutenant, as Commander Kelly recalls, because of his knowledge of seamanship and his experiences with small boats and sailing. Besides being responsible for the decks of the ship, the First Lieutenant is also responsible for the ship's small boats. He also was assigned collateral duties as Public Affairs Officer. Despite all the responsibilities he was given, he gives the impression that serving on GRIDLEY was somehow beneath him. He certainly had less of an opportunity to collect "gongs" there.

2. Page 78 - "motivate 400 swabbies" - The First Lieutenant is responsible only for the personnel of 1st Division, not the entire crew. 1st Division had a roster of about 30 in 1968. To the extent that other divisions had responsibility for deck space, their officers would have been responsible for motivating them.

3. Page 87 has Kerry "shuttling sailors and provisions" between GRIDLEY and KITTY HAWK in a small motor whaleboat out in the Gulf of Tonkin. The regular method of travel between the two ships was via helo. That is how I went over to the KITTY HAWK. If such an event did occur, it would have been unusual and hardly a shuttle.

4. Later on page 87 Kerry talks about Olongapo in the Philippines. He talks about bloated corpses floating in the river and starving women with babies dying of malnutrition. Now Olongapo was a wild and wooly town that existed solely for the entertainment of the US Navy, but in over three years of calling there, I never saw a single instance of either thing happening. Kerry uncovered this in his first visit. If this was from his letters home then he was certainly writing for dramatic effect. Balderdash.

5. The trip to Danang - GRIDLEY went into Danang for briefings before going to Northern SAR. This section is so full of hyperbole that the urge to giggle is almost uncontrollable. "The panic and pressure onboard GRIDLEY, strapping on a .45, wondering if I would have to use it, B-52's howling overhead". A B-52 over Danang would have been so high that only contrails would have been visible, cloud cover permitting. David Simons confirmed my recollection that during our brief stay in Danang Harbor, the sky was overcast to the point of being ominous.

More seriously, no one can remember John Kerry going ashore. I was part of the shore party that went to Monkey Mountain. We were taken in a screened in truck (to protect against grenades being tossed in) and made to unload our .45's. The driver said that he did not want us newbies to shoot anyone by accident.

Neither Commander Kelly nor LCDR Rueckert (Kerry's immediate boss) can recall approving a trip ashore for Ensign Kerry. The author uses remarks of David Simons IC2 as a lead in to the Danang section. I spoke to David and he has no personal knowledge of Kerry going ashore at all. He did talk to a researcher and made some generic remarks about Danang but had never discussed Danang with Kerry. He recalls arguing with the researcher because he tried to put the words "cowboy" in his mouth, which ended up in the book.

There is no mystery about the "gruesome site of a pile of dead VC." We saw no sign of anything like this. However, our escort to Monkey Mountain did tell us how the VC bodies were stacked up on the LZ's after the TET Offensive, which had been several months before. Ensign Kerry would have been told this story by members of the shore party.

If, indeed, he got to the pier, because he was in charge of the motor whaleboat, it certainly would not have been within his purview to wander Danang, eating dog meat and drinking beer in a bar (under arms). It also seems amazing that he had all these observations on Vietnam in such a brief visit.

6. In command - Again with the hyperbole. Kerry makes much about being "in charge" of the ship after the Captain and XO. The OOD is in charge of the operation of the ship during his four hour watch but hardly in charge of the ship. Kerry qualified almost immediately as OOD(P), in port OOD but that is a given. For much of his time onboard he would have been Junior Officer of the Deck when underway. Although his fitness report as of 22 March says "he is qualified as OOD(I) now" (Independent steaming - with no ships or land anywhere near) , only OOD(P) is listed under duties. His Fitness Report from July 1968 lists two months as OOD(I) which would mean he qualified after leaving the war zone.

Some of these points may be perceived as picky, but they seem to show a deliberate effort in his writings of the time to build a mystique for a future political career showing him as a great leader, father confessor to the ship and astute analyst of political and military happenings.

That is not to say that Kerry was not a good officer. He was and to my recollection was well liked. Did he stalk the passageways showing his future presidential timber? Absolutely not. A reporter from the Chicago Tribune actually asked me that. When I told him that he was just another goofy Ensign, he was horrified and did not use that quote.

I corresponded with a CNN Producer who was working on Kerry's bio that was shown on July 25. I provided them with three or four photographs of Kerry on GRIDLEY but they were uninterested in anything else I had to say."

Following is my previous letter;

A VIETNAM VET FISKS "TOUR OF DUTY"
By Michelle Malkin August 24, 2004 05:27 PM
Here's a letter I received today from Terry Sater, a Vietnam Vet who served with the Mobile Riverine Force in the Mekong Delta during 1968 and 1969. He writes that "I'm not part of a 527. I voted for McGovern, Perot and Bush. I didn't volunteer for Nam. I didn't want to go. I am not a hero. I served with heroes. Kerry has dishonored all of us."

Sater said he sent the letter to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, but doesn't expect it will run. It is reprinted here in its entirety:

People don't get it. They point out how "suspicious" it is that the "Swift Boat Veterans for Truth" are "only now" coming out with their charges, as though they should have formed their organization to refute John Kerry when he was a twenty-six year old nobody. Kerry has made his service in Vietnam the centerpiece of his campaign. He has only himself to blame that his service has been questioned. Michael Moore and Whoopee Goldberg spew their venom. The "MoveOn.org" website carries the motto "Democracy in Action". The Swift Boat Veterans are supposed to shut up.

I served twelve months with the Mobile Riverine Force, in the Mekong Delta, during 1968 and 1969, manning automatic weapons on an Armored Troop Carrier. During the first three months of 1969, I operated in and around the little village of Ha Tien, at times, with Kerry's Coastal Division 11 Swift Boats. If one of the men I served with was running for President, I would be extremely proud. If there was any way I could support him for President, I would. The bonds that are formed in combat are special. They are strong. For the men that served in Kerry's unit to state that he is unfit for command cannot and should not be brushed off as "partisan politics." It is not a "Republican vs. Democrat", or "conservative vs. liberal" issue. They aren't doing it for money. It is personal. The Swift Boat Vets are men who came to know John Kerry in the crucible of war and saw things in John Kerry that are so disturbing, that they cannot sit quietly. They also saw and heard one of their own come back from Vietnam and trash the legacy of everyone who served honorably. John Kerry's lies of atrocities are largely responsible for the terrible reputation Vietnam veterans have lived with for their entire lives. He testified that we were murdering, raping and torturing, with the consent and direction of the entire chain of command. Now, John Kerry is angry that these 254 men dare to question him.

I haven't read "Unfit for Command", yet. I have read John Kerry's "Tour of Duty." He reminds me of a popular cartoon in Vietnam, the "Saigon Warrior". The "Saigon Warrior" cartoon figure had his helmet pushed down over his shaded eyes, ammunition belts crossing his puffed out chest, a sword in one hand and his M-16 in the other. He was a caricature.

If you served in Vietnam, you don't have to read "Unfit for Command" to question Kerry's record. His own book; "Tour of Duty" will do that. I will only point out a few things in his book that stood out, to me.

A photo caption in Kerry's book states; "A Swift boat convoy heading up the Bo De River." If Kerry had spent more than four months in Vietnam, he may have known the picture was actually a column of "PBR's" (Patrol Boat, River), not his swift boats.

The book often refers to his four month stint on the Swifts as Kerry's "second tour", since he had spent time on "the guided-missile frigate U.S.S. Gridley, aboard which he visited Vietnam for the first time in March 1968." He states in his book; "Every day that the Gridley patrolled the Gulf of Tonkin an enemy attack was remotely possible." The Gridley steamed in the Gulf of Tonkin, also known as "Yankee Station." I served on the U.S.S. Enterprise, in the Gulf of Tonkin. No self-respecting sailor who served "in-country" would have considered a tour at "Yankee Station" as a tour of duty in Vietnam, unless you were a Navy pilot.

A lot has been made of John Kerry volunteering for combat. On page 104 of his book, it reads; "John Kerry would be training in San Diego for what he thought would be purely coastal patrolling of Operation Market Time, whose objective was to establish a barrier along the coast of Vietnam to interdict the infiltration of insurgent supplies by sea."

On pages 171 and 172, Kerry describes the base for Coastal Division 11, at An Thoi. First, he described the beauty of An Thoi, which was a small village on Phu Quoc Island, good distance off the coast of Vietnam. "But to the U.S. servicemen who fought in the area and had some awareness of such ghastly guerrilla tactics as booby traps, underwater mines, and sniper nests, all An Thoi signified was danger." While I must admit the possibility that my boat crew may have been painfully ignorant and subjected ourselves to mindless risk, we viewed our occasional trips to An Thoi as the closest thing we could find to "R&R". We swam in the crystal clear waters near the village of An Thoi. We fished with percussion grenades and watched as the villagers swam out to scoop up the stunned fish. We drank and played on the beach, with the dogs that roamed the island, at night.

On page 176, he describes his Swift Boat; "Horne neglected to mention that that hull might not be able to stop a BB at a thousand yards." Even his strongest supports must admit he has a tendency to exaggerate.

On the same page he states; "For those boats stationed near the Mekong Delta, a fine source of entertainment presented itself: making hell-for-leather dashes up the Viet Cong infested rivers through "free fire zones", with guns blazing, mostly for kicks and to have something dramatic to write home about." Think about it. You are in "Viet Cong infested rivers." Would you risk low ammo to fire at nothing, "for kicks"? My boat was an armored troop carrier. We carried four .30cal machine guns, two .50cal machine guns, two 20mm cannons and a "Mark 19" grenade launcher. We kept our guns clean. We plugged the ends of the barrels with grease, so that moisture didn't get into the barrel. We kept plenty of ammunition on hand. We did not want to put ourselves at risk by running out of ammunition. We were not allowed to fire freely. During one operation, the last boat in our column was taking sniper fire. The boat captain requested permission to fire back. His request was denied. We could not fire at will, for fun and entertainment.

On page 179, there is a reference to an incident that occurred on October 14th. Page 181 begins with; "Only a few weeks later, Kerry, on a PCF-44 patrol, observed four troop battalions from the Ninth Infantry Division at Dong Tam and five Mobile Riverine Force squadrons staging an assault for the benefit of Secretary of Defense Melvin Laird. "To facilitate putting on a good show, an area was picked out for the landing where the chance of guerilla contact was minimal." Kerry sneered. "Nothing was to mess up the show for the secretary of defense." I was with River Assault Squadron 13 during this time period. Melvin Laird was the secretary of defense from January 22, 1969 to January 29, 1973. At the high point, there were only four squadrons of the Mobile Riverine Force. The four squadrons were split into two larger groups; "Group Alpha" and "Group Bravo", in early summer, of 1968, spread out over different parts of the Mekong Delta. All four squadrons were never pulled together to put on a show for Melvin Laird.

Kerry renewed his decades old smearing of Viet Nam veterans, on page 211, describing Cobra gunship pilots; "Yet Kerry found himself troubled by the realization that some of these wild boys could kill innocent people from a distance and not be bothered by it. He was no pacifist - far from it- and understood that "accidental atrocities" were a part of war. But it disturbed him that even a few trigger happy American yahoos considered killing Vietnamese civilians a sport."

Page 218 relates that Kerry wrote in his notebook, from Sa Dec; ""Merry Christmas from the most inland market time unit." He meant to be clever and point out to his superiors the incongruity on a river canal not far from the Cambodian border northwest of Saigon." In truth, Sa Dec isn't near the Cambodian border. Look at a map. Second, hundreds of various types of Navy craft were all over the Mekong Delta, many in much worse places than Kerry. The "Saigon Warrior" would like everyone to think that he was the lone "Rambo", sitting in VC territory, all alone.

I hope that the whole truth comes out. I believe it will if people read "Tour of Duty", "Unfit for Command," and Kerry signs the "180" form which will allow the Navy to release all of his records, not just the ones he has selected.

Terry Sater
Eureka, MO

John Kerry, sign the Department of Defense 180 form. Truth matters. Character matters. Honor matters.

I heard the show. Michelle... (Below threshold)
Branna:

I heard the show. Michelle was very good. I am wondering what happened to rile up Al Franken at the convention. I have been trying to find the info & had no luck, only a snapshot that was on Matt Drudge. Is there are blog on the site?

BTW, thanks for introducing me to blogs. It's great avenue for interaction.

BUSH/CHENEY 2004!




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