March 13, 2004

Letter to the Paper VIII

Thomas Lipscomb's NY Sun article on how John Kerry resigned from VVAW over at Outside the Beltway. The affair is a shocker, if true. This shouldn't be left to wander around in the fever swamps and it should be easily debunked if John Kerry is telling the truth that he did not attend the fateful four day meeting.

Clearly VVAW was being monitored by the government. It's quite possible that the FBI files on this radical group can exonerate John Kerry. If he's telling the truth, Kerry can likely provide corroboration of his actual location during those four days in November, 1971. If he's lying, it's important to uncover that too.

Discount Blogger commented on the Outside the Beltway article and thought that this is automatically right wing character assassination. I left the following in comments over there:

After reading the article and the comments at outside the beltway, I've come to a somewhat different conclusion. Kerry, at age 27, had some significant difficulty spotting violent, treasonous nutcases but when push came to shove he resigned which speaks well of his ultimate judgment.

The question really is what are you supposed to do when you belong to an organization that has a significant minority (a lone nut wouldn't have caused Kerry to resign) that believes in political assassination.

Clearly, they knew that they were being spied upon by the government. They had to move twice to avoid that spying just to debate the assassination plot. So, assuming that the two eyewitnesses who place Kerry at the meeting are correct, and the three sources affirming the assassination plot are also correct, does this have as much relevance to judging Kerry fit for the presidency as to the pacing of George W. Bush's National Guard service?

I think it does. The presidency creates the most microscopic public examination of a person's history and character available on the planet. This is fit for probably the most influential executive position on the planet. The meat grinder is always toughest for first time presidential contenders like Kerry.

If Kerry wasn't there, there should be corroborating witnesses for that time period. They should be produced and it should be done as soon as possible. This is a four day time period we're talking about when Kerry was already a public figure. At the very least, the FBI records of the meeting should be released. If the evidence shows he wasn't there, fine, case closed and it's despicable right-wing mudslinging.

But if he was there, at the very least he's been lying in a significant way about his past political history. That says something about John Kerry that should be relevant to voters and it should say something about how deeply journalists need to fact check John Kerry's other statements about his political past.

Posted by TMLutas at March 13, 2004 09:26 AM