New John Kerry Editorial About Patriotism - U2 Feedback

Go Back   U2 Feedback > Lypton Village > Free Your Mind > Free Your Mind Archive
Click Here to Login
 
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 04-22-2006, 08:40 AM   #1
Blue Crack Addict
 
MrsSpringsteen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Posts: 24,984
Local Time: 04:03 PM
New John Kerry Editorial About Patriotism

April 22, 2006

"Thirty five years ago today, I testified before the United States Senate. I was a 27-year-old Vietnam veteran who believed the war had to come to an end.

It was 1971.

Three years earlier, Richard Nixon had been elected president with a secret plan for peace -- a plan he kept secret from the American people as young Americans continued to die for a mission high-ranking officials of two administrations had decided was unwinnable.

We would watch the Nixon administration lie, break the law, and work overtime to squash dissent -- all the while claiming absurdly they were prolonging war to protect our troops as they withdrew. We were a country deeply divided. World War II fathers split with Vietnam generation sons over a war that was tearing us apart -- and split, particularly, over our responsibilities during a time of war.

Many people did not understand or agree with my act of public dissent. To them, supporting the troops meant continuing to support the war, or at least keeping my mouth shut.

But I couldn't remain silent. I felt compelled to speak out about what was happening in Vietnam, where the children of America were pulled from front porches and living rooms and plunged almost overnight into a world of sniper fire, ambushes, rockets, booby traps, body bags, explosions, sleeplessness, and the confusion created by an enemy who was sometimes invisible and firing at us, and sometimes right next to us and smiling. It was clear that thousands of Americans were losing their lives in Vietnam while politicians in Washington schemed to save their political reputations.

Thirty-five years later, in another war gone off course, I see history repeating itself. It is both a right and an obligation for Americans today to disagree with a president who is wrong, a policy that is wrong, and a course in Iraq that weakens the nation. Again, we must refuse to sit quietly and watch our troops sacrificed for a policy that isn't working while Americans who dissent and ask tough questions are branded unpatriotic.

Just as it was in 1971, it is again right to make clear that the best way to support the troops is to oppose a course that squanders their lives, dishonors their sacrifice, and disserves the American people and our principles.

True patriots must defend the right of dissent and listen to the dissenters. Dissenters are not always right, but it is always a warning sign when they are accused of unpatriotic sentiments by politicians trying to avoid accountability or debate on their own policies. We should know by now that those who are right should never fear scrutiny of their policy and thorough debate.

In World War I, America's values were degraded, not defended, when dissenters were jailed and the teaching of German was banned in some public schools. It was panic and prejudice, not true patriotism, that brought the internment of the Japanese-Americans during World War II, a measure upheld by Supreme Court justices who did not uphold their oaths to defend the Constitution. We are stronger today because no less a rock-ribbed conservative than Robert Taft stood up at the height of World War II and asserted, ''The maintenance of the right of criticism in the long run will do the country maintaining it a great deal more good than it will do the enemy, and will prevent mistakes which might otherwise occur."

In recent weeks, a number of retired high-ranking military leaders have publicly called for the resignation of Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. And from the ranks of this administration and its conservative surrogates, we've heard these calls dismissed as acts of disloyalty or as a threat to civilian control of the armed forces. We have even heard accusations that this dissent gives aid and comfort to the enemy. That line of attack is shameful, especially coming from those who have never worn the uniform.

Generals and others who call for recognizing the facts on the ground in Iraq are not defeatists, they are patriots. At a time when mistake after mistake is being compounded by the very civilian leadership in the Pentagon that ignored expert military advice in the invasion and occupation of Iraq, those who understand the price being paid for each mistake by our troops, our country, and Iraq itself must be heard. At a time when our nation is imprisoned in a failed policy and we are being told once again that admitting the mistakes, not the mistakes themselves, will provide our enemies with an intolerable propaganda victory, that we literally have no choice but to stay the course even to a bitter end, those who seek to reclaim America's true sovereignty and freedom of action must be respected.

Iraq is not Vietnam, and the war on terrorism is not the Cold War. But the threat of jihadist extremism is another ''long, twilight struggle," as President Kennedy said in his inaugural, and the threat is very real, but we will never defeat terrorists by trampling our own freedom and democracy. The Swift Boat-style attacks that have been aimed at dissenters from Gold Star mothers to decorated veterans like Jack Murtha hurt our democracy even more than they wound their target.

I still believe as strongly as I did 35 years ago that the most important way to support our troops is to tell the truth. Patriotism does not belong to those who defend a president's position -- it belongs to those who defend our country, in battle and in dissent. That is a lesson of Vietnam worth remembering today."
__________________

__________________
MrsSpringsteen is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 08:43 AM   #2
Rock n' Roll Doggie
 
BonosSaint's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 3,566
Local Time: 05:03 PM
Too late, Mr. Kerry. Too late.
__________________

__________________
BonosSaint is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 09:19 AM   #3
ONE
love, blood, life
 
A_Wanderer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: The Wild West
Posts: 12,518
Local Time: 07:03 AM
Someone smells blood, I am not saying he is unpatriotic, I am saying that he is a politician. Incidently he is quite right about getting US troops out of the firing line as they are perpetual targets, the biggest lesson of Iraq is that there is no halfway occupation force with the current force structure.
__________________
A_Wanderer is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 01:01 PM   #4
Blue Crack Addict
 
verte76's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: hoping for changes
Posts: 23,331
Local Time: 09:03 PM
Quote:
Originally posted by BonosSaint
Too late, Mr. Kerry. Too late.
I agree.
__________________
verte76 is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 01:43 PM   #5
Blue Crack Addict
 
deep's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: A far distance down.
Posts: 28,501
Local Time: 01:03 PM
If it is true?
Why is it too late?


Through the 30's and early 40s many in the U S did not want to hear anything about the German's or the European War.

Support to get involved in Europe did not exist.

And in the 50s dissenters against McCarthy
were being told it was too late,
that we had to take whatever steps necessary - to fight the Red Menace.
__________________
deep is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 02:05 PM   #6
Rock n' Roll Doggie
 
BonosSaint's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 3,566
Local Time: 05:03 PM
Too late for Kerry to be the leader he had the chance to be in 2004. He squandered it. I agree with what he said and it's nice he's jumping back on the bandwagon when he has nothing to lose.
__________________
BonosSaint is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 02:22 PM   #7
Acrobat
 
aislinn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: St. Louis, MO
Posts: 328
Local Time: 03:03 PM
Quote:
and it's nice he's jumping back on the bandwagon when he has nothing to lose.
Nope, he's got nothing to lose...

...but the gossip says he's looking at another run in 2008.

The Democrats would be making a HUGE mistake IMO if they picked him.
__________________
aislinn is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 04:37 PM   #8
Rock n' Roll Doggie
FOB
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Posts: 8,876
Local Time: 09:03 PM
Mr. Kerry was wrong in 1971 and he is wrong today. Its a good thing he was defeated in the 2004 election.
__________________
STING2 is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 05:01 PM   #9
ONE
love, blood, life
 
melon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: Toronto, Ontario
Posts: 11,781
Local Time: 04:03 PM
Quote:
Originally posted by STING2
Mr. Kerry was wrong in 1971 and he is wrong today. Its a good thing he was defeated in the 2004 election.
So dissent is, indeed, unpatriotic?

Melon
__________________
melon is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 05:03 PM   #10
Refugee
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: LA, California, USA
Posts: 1,349
Local Time: 09:03 PM
Okay, John Kerry may just be a politician, but what he is saying is correct. Dissention is American.
__________________
blueyedpoet is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 05:12 PM   #11
Blue Crack Addict
 
deep's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: A far distance down.
Posts: 28,501
Local Time: 01:03 PM
Quote:
Originally posted by STING2
Mr. Kerry was wrong in 1971 .
Actually, he was right.
to continue in Viet Nam was pointless.
And his argument / side won the day.

Perhaps you would be happier with 108000 names on the wall?


Is Iraq lost?
probably.

But as long as they can cloud the issue
we can get the number up from 2400 to 4000 - 5000
and Haliburton is having record profits on war profiteering.

Iraq will blow apart, for sure.
The Kurds want Kirkuk with the oil and will take it.

The Shia south will not give the Sunnis any real power sharing.

The Administration’s only plan
is to maintain the status quo
until 2008 election and then blame the collapse on the new president.
__________________
deep is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 05:42 PM   #12
Refugee
 
zooperson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: los angeles
Posts: 1,548
Local Time: 02:03 PM
Quote:
Originally posted by STING2
Mr. Kerry was wrong in 1971 and he is wrong today. Its a good thing he was defeated in the 2004 election.
why don't you elaborate? how was he wrong to comeback from a war he fought in and say "no, this war is not necessary to the saftey of America. stop sending our young men to die for nothing"? just curious.

i think you should take that "stolen Honor" DVD out of the dvd player and listen to John Kerry's actual testimony before the congress.

if you think i'm off base please tell me for what reason was he wrong to do what he did?
__________________
zooperson is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 05:54 PM   #13
Blue Crack Addict
 
verte76's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: hoping for changes
Posts: 23,331
Local Time: 09:03 PM
I also think Mr. Kerry was right in 1971. Viet Nam was a fiasco.
__________________
verte76 is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 06:43 PM   #14
Rock n' Roll Doggie
FOB
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Posts: 8,876
Local Time: 09:03 PM
Quote:
Originally posted by deep


Actually, he was right.
to continue in Viet Nam was pointless.
And his argument / side won the day.

Perhaps you would be happier with 108000 names on the wall?


Is Iraq lost?
probably.

But as long as they can cloud the issue
we can get the number up from 2400 to 4000 - 5000
and Haliburton is having record profits on war profiteering.

Iraq will blow apart, for sure.
The Kurds want Kirkuk with the oil and will take it.

The Shia south will not give the Sunnis any real power sharing.

The Administration’s only plan
is to maintain the status quo
until 2008 election and then blame the collapse on the new president.
He was wrong and the majority of Vietnam Veterans agree. The United States by 1971 had successfully crushed the Vietcong movement in the south a year or so earlier. Most US ground combat troops had been withdrawn from Vietnam by mid-1971. The vast majority of the fighting was being conducted by South Vietnamese ground troops who were fighting North Vietnamese forces from the North.

In 1972 when the North Vietnamese launched their "Easter Offensive", they were only US military advisors and a smaller number US ground combat troops in the country. The South Vietnamese forces did all the fighting and repelled the North Vietnamese invasion.

Had the United States kept the 20,000 advisors and support troops in Vietnam for several more years to continue to support the government and military, the North Vietnamese would NEVER have been able to overrun South Vietnam.

But the last US troops were withdrawn in March 1973. Later in 1973, congress cut off all funding to South Vietnam. Still South Vietnam continue completely on its own until the Spring of 1975 when a serious of military setbacks put the North Vietnamese in a strong position to overrun the country which they did.

If the United States had kept the small number of advisors as well combat air support in the region for several more years supporting the South, the South Vietnamese would have eventually developed the capacity to successfuly defend against any North Vietnamese invasion on its own with out foreign aid.

US deaths in the war dropped significantly as the South Vietnamese took over the fighting. Less than 300 US troops were killed in Vietnam in 1972. Remaining in South Vietnam for another 5 to 10 years with just 10,000 key advisors would likely have cost about a few hundred more deaths based on the results of 1972 which saw some of the heaviest fighting of the war.

But instead, the American people and Congress turned their backs on the South Vietnamese people and let them be massacred and enslaved by the North after so much had been spent and sacraficed to prevent that outcome. To have remained in South Vietnam at the level the United States was in 1972 would have cost a tiny fraction of what the war had cost up to that point and would have ensured that South Vietnam would have remained independent and free, with the potential to develop and economy like we see today in South Korea which has one of the highest standards of living on the planet.

John Kerry and those who supported the pre-mature withdrawal from South Vietnam were wrong and cost South Vietnam its country and freedom as well as many lives. It cost the United States its reputation and foreign policy standing in the world which would later embolden dictators and terrorist in the years to come, from Saddam Hussien to Bin Ladin as factually verified and writings and interviews by both individuals.


Iraq is not lost at all. The country has had a faster political development than either Germany or Japan did, both of whom took nearly a decade to form a new government after World War II. The insurgency in Iraq has not grown at all since April 2004 as shown by US casualty statistics. In fact, US casualties fell for 5 straight months from October to March despite claims that US troops had "gone from being the hunter to the hunted". But its easier to ignore such facts when they punch gaping holes in ones political agenda.

At the current rate of Casualties in Iraq, the United States would have to remain in Iraq for the next 100 years to suffer the same casualties it suffered in Vietnam. Current defense spending combined with spending all spending for Iraq and Afghanistan takes up a smaller percentage of US GDP than spending on Defense did during the 1980s in peacetime.

People said Bosnia will blow apart for sure! More than 300,000 people in a country of only 4 million were slaughtered in just 4 years time. You had three ethnic groups who people had been said were fighting for thousands of years and would never stop. 10 years after the end of that conflict, the top news story out of Bosnia is the discovery of 12,000 year old Pyramids.

Provided the coalition remains in Iraq and does not withdraw prematurely, Iraq is going to make it. It has come a long way already. By the end of this coming summer, the Iraqi military will be patroling and conducting security in 75% of the country with the coalition forces doing only 25%. Two years ago, the new Iraqi military only had a few thousand people and was still in training providing 0% of the countries security. Huge progress has been made, just not large enough yet for some to still pretend to ignore it.

The Shia in the South have just removed their selection for Prime Minister, Ibrahim al-Jaafari, and put a person who is considered favorable to Sunni's in the position for Prime Minister, Jawad al-Maliki. The process is moving forward, there may be more delays in the weeks to come, but it is moving forward.

The Kurds, Shia and now Sunni's, want an Iraq where everyone is fairly represented and the revenues from oil are evenly divided between the communities, unlike the situation that existed under Saddam. The opportunity for substantial prosperity for the people exist in the future. Division and Civil War will only bring poverty and suffering. No single group has real strength to go it alone and succeed now, although there are obviously still some that have the mistaken belief that its possible.

The Administration has done more than just maintain the status qou over the past 3 years in Iraq as evidence by the rise of the Iraqi Military, the historic elections, and a new permanent government on the verge of completing its formation. There will be more progress and changes over the next 3 years. Over time the United States and coalition partners will be able to start withdrawing troops as the Iraqi military starts taking over all operations.

Provided there is no premature withdrawal from Iraq, the operation will eventually succeed. The insurgency has failed to grow since April 2004. It has failed to prevent the major achievments over the past two years as well. The insurgency at best has only maintained its strength, unlike the Iraqi military and Iraqi political process which grows stronger every day.
__________________
STING2 is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 06:53 PM   #15
Rock n' Roll Doggie
FOB
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Posts: 8,876
Local Time: 09:03 PM
Quote:
Originally posted by zooperson


why don't you elaborate? how was he wrong to comeback from a war he fought in and say "no, this war is not necessary to the saftey of America. stop sending our young men to die for nothing"? just curious.

i think you should take that "stolen Honor" DVD out of the dvd player and listen to John Kerry's actual testimony before the congress.

if you think i'm off base please tell me for what reason was he wrong to do what he did?
Its John Kerry's right to protest, he was wrong in what he alleged, his conclusions about the United States involvement in Vietnam, the Cold War, as well as overall US Foreign and National Security Policy.

I have never seen the "Stolen Honor" DVD, I have read John Kerry's actual testimony multiple times which even John Kerry admits to being embarrassed about some of the things in it.

I never said he was wrong to do what he did, just wrong in his claims, idea's, plans for the future of the country. He was wrong about Vietnam in 1971, he was wrong about what to do about defense spending when he first ran for the Senate in 1984. He was wrong in voting against the 1st Gulf War in 1991 and he was wrong the 2004 election. He is wrong now on his description of the situation in Iraq as well as his ideas on what to do.
__________________

__________________
STING2 is offline  
 

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:03 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Design, images and all things inclusive copyright © Interference.com