February 15, 2004
An Era of Pre-emptive StrikesBy Thomas Lifson
We are in an era of pre—emptive strikes. The Democrats may not like Bush's foreign policy of pre—emptive measures against potential threats from abroad. But pre—emptiveness becomes bipartisan for the Democrats, when it comes to attacks designed to weaken the President on the "character" issue or "national security."
Why did Terry McAulliuffe go off on Bush for being "AWOL" in the National Guard in
The Times, which has failed to report the Kerry intern story, and has given minimal coverage to stories about Kerry's role and comments as a vocal anti—war activist after he returned from Viet Nam, today went so far as to publish a not very funny "op ed" by Larry David trying to liken his Army Reserve duty in New York during Viet Nam with Bush's Air National Guard service. Heaven forbid Larry David "manning" the controls of a fighter plane. The F—102s flown by young George Bush were so difficult to fly that they claimed many a pilot's life, which is one reason that they were phased out of service, denying Mr. Bush the opportunity to serve in
McAulliffe and the Times (the house organ for the Democratic Party, ombudsman or not) clearly wanted to pre—emptively soften—up Bush before the inevitable counter attacks began on the all—but—certain Democratic nominee for adultery with a young intern (a story they all knew was flying around, whether true or not, spread by rival candidate Wesley Clark, among others), and perhaps worse, a close examination of the truly awful lies that veteran Kerry was broadcasting 30 years ago about what he now calls his "Band of Brothers.
Back then, Kerry thought his fellow soldiers were guilty of thousands of rapes, vicious war crimes, and callous deliberate evil acts, designed to torture and destroy the lives of the Vietnamese . Michael Moore could not have said it any more savagely back then. Now Kerry tells us he disagrees with what Jane Fonda did in 1972, parading around with the North Vietnamese, her heroes, while real American heros, like John McCain, were languishing in hideous prisons.
Kerry was a frequent companion on the anti—war circuit with Fonda (no need for fake Adobe Photoshop pictures to prove this). Kerry never disassociated himself from her at the time she was committing these acts, and he has never repudiated the ugly comments he made about the Americans who served in the early 70s.
Mark Steyn begins the deconstruction of the Bush AWOL "scandal" and the Kerry "scandals" today, in a British paper, of course, not an American one. Today, similar themes are developed by Steyn in the Chicago Sun—Times. The major prestige American papers have ignored the Kerry adultery story, while sending teams of reporters to
We are in for some ugly stuff fairly early this time around. But it is not just Kerry against Bush. It is almost the entire fourth estate aligned against the President. A Washington Post poll this week showed large majorities of American from every political persuasion were uninterested in the Bush AWOL story.
Sex scandals, no matter what people may tell pollsters, are another matter entirely. A squadron of Fleet Street scribblers has been deployed to
Tales of wartime atrocities rank just below sex in mass appeal. Now that the combined might of the Democrats and their mainstream press allies have legitimized the minute exhumation of the events of more than three decades past, it is only a matter of time until Kerry's record trashing the "Band of Brothers" he now clings to, some of it under oath in testimony before Congress, becomes a matter of widespread public interest.
It is a serious violation of the Uniform Code of Military Justice for an officer to fail to report a war crime which he personally witnessed, as Kerry claimed others had done in Senate testimony. Violaters are subject to serious prison sentences. Postponing a National Guard drill is pretty small beer, comparatively. As the press keeps mining, they may turn out to be doing damage to their candidate of choice, not the President.
NB: an earlier version of this article erroneously stated that Mr. Kerry said he had personally witnessed war crimes. We have been unable to verify this, and withdraw the claim. The American Thinker regrets the error.
Further data: Kerry, in a 1971 debate on the Dick Cavett television show defined himself as having committed "war crimes" if we define such as acts "contrary to the Hague and Geneva conventions and to the laws of warfare."
Here is the entire relevant paragraph, courtesy of the Boston Globe:
"I personally didn't see personal atrocities in the sense I saw somebody cut a head off or something like that," Kerry said. "However, I did take part in free—fire zones, I did take part in harassment and interdiction fire, I did take part in search—and—destroy missions in which the houses of noncombatants were burned to the ground. And all of these acts, I find out later on, are contrary to the Hague and Geneva conventions and to the laws of warfare. So in that sense, anybody who took part in those, if you carry out the application of the Nuremberg Principles, is in fact guilty. But we are not trying to find war criminals. That is not our purpose. It never has been."
Is this a confession? You tell us.