I took a brief break last night and got caught up in CSPAN2 coverage of the press conference by the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth at the National Press Club. A good summary was done over at Newsmax. I've already heard the Kerry camp try to cast aspersions on the group because of links to supposed "dirty tricks" merchants. I don't care though, because what I saw with my own eyes was one after another of these individuals, some near tears, decrying comments Kerry has made in the past. While much has been and will be made of their challenge as to the veracity of Kerry's medals, their real problem with Kerry is that they feel he is a hypocrite. He came back from Vietnam and told the world that he and they committed war crimes. Now he is trying to run on his ribbons and medals as a war hero. He is trying to have it both ways, implying that he was a hero for fighting in the war and a hero for fighting against it when he got out. The most amazing thing to me was that all of the veterans gathered could not recall any other individual who served only four months in country. Most left in body bags, severely wounded or after their 12 month tour.
The Press, of course, took a skeptical tone when asking questions, some of which show that they just don't understand the military. One of the key skepticisms held by the press seems to be the fact that only one of the men who actually served on Kerry's boat has come forward against him. The fact is that these swift boats usually operated in groups of 2 to 4, often with 30-50 feet of each other. But, again, the media obviously felt that the most damning fact was that the Swifties were being helped by supposed Bush dirty tricks surrogates. That was all they had. So, before you let the Democrat spin machine sway you into thinking this is just another right-wing smear campaign, try to see these men, these real Vietnam hero's at this press conference if it airs again. Regardless of who sponsored what, I have no doubt that they feel that John Kerry is not worthy of being Commander and Chief. Neither do I.