Murderous Ares

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Ken Layne gazes upon John Kerry, and is struck by a vision of the God of War.

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  1. Back in the old days, America could pick between a couple of killers in the general election. I’m sure Kerry would have done just as well to pick a cold blooded killer for his running mate if only there were more of ’em around. You know the type he needs, someone who kills savages with nothing but a blunt instrument, or better yet, someone who kills with nothing but his own bare hands!

  2. I was initially ill when I heard there were vets “out there” attacking Kerry on his war record. It seemed to me a sure fire way to hand him the election.

    After I googled the Swift Vets, I did a 180 degree turn. They have Kerry in well-documented lies, and not just Xmas in Cambodia.

    Consider that the primary author of Unfit for Command, John O’Neill, voted for Perot in ’96 and Gore in ’00. He last voted GOP for Prez in ’88. But he wrote a number one bestseller that by all reports is meticulously researched (I cannot get a copy at my B&N becasue they are sold out), against Bush’s opponent. All of the proceeds, he is donating to military charities. What explains this? What drives a comfortable lawyer to expose himself to the calumny he had to know his efforts were going to earn him from the brie and white wine set? I wondered about all that, and kept reading online.

    Kerry’s trail of lies does not begin or end with Cambodia. Let us imagine that George Bush had sat in on a meeting with anti-abortionists who were plotting to shoot a few abortionists. Let us further posit that altho he talked them out of it, he continued as a speaker for and member of the group, and did not alert law enforcement to their dispositions. Then he denied to the media that he’d ever been at the meeting where murder was plotted.

    Then consider this excerpt from a piece at the American Spectator blog:

    “In March, reliable witnesses came forward who placed John Kerry at a November 1971 Kansas City meeting where the Vietnam Veterans Against the War secretly voted on a proposal to kill six pro-war senators. This appeared especially odd because Kerry had told two historians, Gerald Nicosia and Douglas Brinkley, that he was not there and that he had resigned from the organization before the meeting was held. He denied eyewitnesses’ accounts as well, even when six witnesses had appeared, several of whom were working for his presidential campaign.”

    “As the story developed, and was widely ignored by the major media, several things emerged that reflected favorably on Kerry’s conduct at the meeting. He had argued strongly against the assassinations and prevailed in the final vote. But Kerry still denied the accounts. He stuck to the resignation story as well, even though there was clear evidence in the New York Times and other papers that Kerry had continued as a spokesman for the VVAW, making media and speaking appearances for a year and a half after his supposed resignation.”

    “When FBI files emerged establishing Kerry’s presence in Kansas City, the campaign conceded that Kerry somehow must have forgotten his involvement in the plot to assassinate U.S. senators while still on the executive committee of the VVAW. What might have been an unforgettable experience for a man who was now a Senator himself turned out to be just one of those little memory lapses we all have.”

    Whole thing at: http://www.spectator.org/dsp_article.asp?art_id=6980

    The Swift vets thing has been swamping the blogosphere for a bit better than 2 weeks, and is now pushing the MSM media to pay attention. The Swiftees established credibility with the Xmas in Cambodia issue, but there is more, and they are not going away, Neither are the questions about Kerry’s judgment and truthfulness.

  3. Witness this army of such mass and charge
    Led by a delicate and tender prince,
    Whose spirit with divine ambition puff’d
    Makes mouths at the invisible event,
    Exposing what is mortal and unsure
    To all that fortune, death and danger dare,

    The imminent death of twenty thousand men,
    That, for a fantasy and trick of fame,
    Go to their graves like beds, fight for a plot
    Whereon the numbers cannot try the cause,
    Which is not tomb enough and continent
    To hide the slain? O, from this time forth,
    My thoughts be bloody, or be nothing worth!

    Hamlet(Act 4 Scene 4)

    “The lady doth protest too much, methinks”

    Hamlet(Act 3 Scene 2)

  4. I’m not exactly a fan of John Kerry, but I thought the article was rather funny.

  5. Ken,

    One or two of those 20,000 dead civilians may have been shot by Saddam Fedayeen using them for cover. Another couple may have been killed in those suicide and remote control car bombings that you can only hear about on indymedia because CNN refuses to cover them lest they make Bush look bad. A few more may have been killed for mopping the floors and emptying the trash in the Green Zone or even being a too smart looking scientist (#1 deadliest unarmed occupation in Iraq). It’s even possible that the odd Iraqi civilian was killed by the (strictly Iraqi) rebellious forces, despite the fact that video of their use of controlled gun fire shames all coalition forces in its restraint and accuracy.

    To be fair the Americans probably haven’t “sent to their beds” more than 19,985, 19,990 tops, Iraqi civilians. I know our ten based numerical system makes 20,000 a pleasant round figure, but be patient, you’ll get there in a day or two.

  6. joe, the following was written in response to Kerry’s latest Cambodia story:
    I understand that the campaign of candidate John Kerry is now asserting that not only did Navy Lt. Kerry visit Cambodia in his swift boat in 1968-69, but he performed four missions to drop off agents inside Cambodia. Perhaps, but I don’t think so.
    In my Aug. 13 column in this paper, I described my job in the American embassy 1968-1970 as the “Cambodia man.” My job was to follow events in Cambodia as they impacted the United States in Vietnam. This related in most part to border incidents. However, I did chair, on behalf of the American ambassador, a group known as the “Cambodia Committee,” composed of Army, Navy intelligence, CIA and Special Forces representatives. The function of this committee was to supervise authorized cross-border operations ? principally insertion of U.S. and Vietnamese Special Forces into the northeastern part of Cambodia and the panhandle of Laos to monitor the Ho Chi Minh Trail. This mountainous and jungled area had no civilian population, with the exception of some hill tribe villages. These teams performed very dangerous tasks, and the reaction of the Communists was invariably violent. Most extractions were done under fire.
    Main force American units also performed reconnaissance of Communist border concentrations in their areas of operations with Long Range Patrols, known colloquially as “LRPs.” Those that probed Cambodian base areas also received violent reactions. The Communist base areas after 1965 were extensive, well camouflaged and frequently underground. When U.S. and Vietnamese forces entered those areas during the incursions of May and June 1970, they encountered fierce resistance when destroying massive amounts of food and material. Military intelligence kept tabs on the more than one dozen base areas in Cambodia principally by signal intercepts, aircraft using side-looking radar, prisoner interrogation and some agent reports. At one Special Forces camp that I visited in the Mekong Delta swamps on the south side of the “Parrot’s Beak” of Cambodia, the Green Berets had a ground radar system for monitoring infiltration that could discern humans from cattle as well as direction of movement.
    I assisted in the delivery of five separate intelligence dossiers in 1968 on the Cambodian base areas through the Australian Embassy in Phnom Penh to the Cambodian government. We know the dossiers had a significant impact on the Cambodians, and we began a low level of cooperation as a result of the information.
    The Navy kept track of Communist shipping to Cambodia, and the U.S. mission in Vietnam was persuaded that most of the munitions to the Communist forces in the southern half of South Vietnam were delivered through the Port of Sihanoukville.
    Line crossers were not generally used in the populated portions of Cambodia that stretched along the borders of Vietnam’s III and IV Corps to the Gulf of Siam because of the concern for the impact on civilians that could enrage Prince Sihanouk, the fiery head of state of Cambodia. Intelligence operatives had great trouble penetrating base areas. Even Cambodian provincial officials were prevented from traveling in their jurisdictions where there were base areas.
    This was, by the way, one key reason for the overthrow of Prince Sihanouk in March 1970. His seeming acceptance of Vietnamese Communist usurpation of Cambodian land alienated many of his subjects, including the peasants on the border who were shot at by both sides. The Cambodian farmers detested the land grabbing of the Vietnamese. The relative openness of the terrain also militated against armed groups of Americans scouring the countryside.
    I believe, based on the foregoing, that I would have been aware of Navy operations inserting agents into the southern parts of Cambodia.
    Andrew Antippas is a combat infantry veteran of the Korean War and served eight of his 32 years in the U.S. Foreign Service working on Cambodia.

  7. So, is there any evidence that the whole Kerry-got-his-dates-wrong scandal has ever turned an undecided voter against him? The only people shrieking about it on this blog were already mindless Bush-backers before the Democratic primaries even began.

  8. “The next Vietnam movie will be a buddy comedy starring Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt, and all they’re going to do is kill Charlie and win medals and dance with beautiful girls. It’ll make $300 million on the opening weekend.”

    I’m serious.. they should greenlight this thing.

  9. Mona, you big team leader, you’re supposed to beging posts like that with “As a lifelong Democrat…”

    Kerry produces support for his Cambodia story in today’s papers. http://www.boston.com/globe The part where the anti-Kerry activist says the Cambodia incursions couldn’t have happened because they were illegal made me shoot iced coffee out my nose.

    “What drives a comfortable lawyer to expose himself to the calumny he had to know his efforts were going to earn him from the brie and white wine set?” You mean the guy the Nixon White House used as an anti-John Kerry operative thirty years ago? You do know that John Kerry first came to prominence by saying things that people like John O’Neil took offense to, don’t you? The sort of people who deny that US troops committed atrocities in Vietnam or crossed the border into Cambodia tend to have long memories when it comes to Boomer-era Vietnam squabbling, and tend not to have a great deal of credibility. If CSPAN ever reruns the Dick Cavett show where Kerry debated O’Neil, you should take an hour to familiarize yourself with the person you find so credible.

    I wish Kerry would more publicly take credit for his success in getting the veterans group to renounce violence, too. It was a real service to his country that, in the near-civil war atmosphere, he kept his head and led others (very angry, combat-hardened others) to keep theirs as well. During the event at the Capitol at which Kerry and others threw away (or gave back) their decorations, vets were saying things like, “I hope they realize this is their last god damn chance!” and “We’re never fighting again, but if we do, it will be to take these steps.” I, for one, am glad their leadership was more like John Kerry, and less like John O’Neil or George Bush.

  10. Ah, Mona and joe, I had people like you in mind when I wrote the book.

  11. Ken Shultz,

    “let’s hope the sons of the twenty thousand Iraqi civilians we sent to their beds don’t feel the same way Hamlet did.”

    Some will inevitably but most will not. They will blame Saddam. Those that do blame the Coalition will be a distinct minority swamped by the masses who benefited from Saddam’s overthrow.

    Put yourself in their shoes. The chances of a random Iraqi getting killed in the current struggle is around 1 in 1200. (By way of comparison, the lifetime risk that an American will die in an automobile accident is 1 in 140.) Most Iraqi will not know first hand anyone who died in the war but, according to a scientific polls conducted last year, each individual in Iraq knows first hand of a family member who was tortured by Saddam. 1 in 10 know first hand of someone who died at his hands.

    If it were you and your loved ones living under Saddam’s rule would you now feel wronged? If you were not a member of Saddam’s privileged elite would you now look back on his reign with fond memories?

    If we do not falter, if we do not abandon them, the vast majority of Iraqi will not hold us in ill regard for those who die in this struggle.

  12. The chances of a random Iraqi getting killed in the current struggle is around 1 in 1200. (By way of comparison, the lifetime risk that an American will die in an automobile accident is 1 in 140.) Most Iraqi will not know first hand anyone who died in the war but, according to a scientific polls conducted last year, each individual in Iraq knows first hand of a family member who was tortured by Saddam. 1 in 10 know first hand of someone who died at his hands.

    shannon, i might agree with your math, but what iraqis will think and feel may be another thing. the chances of an american dying in a plane accident is far less than in a car accident — but that doesn’t stop legions of americans from panicking in airports.

    saddam is gone; we are there. saddam was a known, longtime feature of iraqi society — and there is confort in what is known — one usually knew what could get you into trouble; we, on the other hand, are seen (as i’ve read iraqis tell it) as far more arbitrary and capricious; and perhaps most importantly, saddam was iraqi and we are foreign.

    i think it takes an unwarranted degree of optimism to believe at this point that there is little chance of us being remembered for decades after we’re gone as the british are remembered there.

  13. Well, Shannon, let’s hope the sons of the twenty thousand Iraqi civilians we sent to their beds don’t feel the same way Hamlet did.

    “The lady doth protest too much, methinks.”

    Doesn’t the Queen say this not realizing that it is she herself who is being portrayed?

    “…difficile est saturam non scribere.”

    Juvenal (Satire I)

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