But he is a self admitted war crimminal.
MR. CROSBY NOYES (Washington Evening Star): Mr. Kerry, you said at one time or another that you think our policies in Vietnam are tantamount to genocide and that the responsibility lies at all chains of command over there. Do you consider that you personally as a Naval officer committed atrocities in Vietnam or crimes punishable by law in this country?
KERRY: There are all kinds of atrocities, and I would have to say that, yes, yes, I committed the same kind of atrocities as thousands of other soldiers have committed in that I took part in shootings in free fire zones. I conducted harassment and interdiction fire. I used 50 calibre machine guns, which we were granted and ordered to use, which were our only weapon against people. I took part in search and destroy missions, in the burning of villages. All of this is contrary to the laws of warfare, all of this is contrary to the Geneva Conventions and all of this is ordered as a matter of written established policy by the government of the United States from the top down. And I believe that the men who designed these, the men who designed the free fire zone, the men who ordered us, the men who signed off the air raid strike areas, I think these men, by the letter of the law, the same letter of the law that tried Lieutenant Calley, are war criminals.
I'm getting real tired of having to explain everything to you people. When are you going to learn that rules only apply to conservatives/Republicans.
Kerry has made frequent references to his own military background, depicting himself as a longtime proud American who served his nation honorably during the Vietnam War era. Yet there is another side to that story. When Kerry returned from combat, he in fact became a key figure in the early-1970s, anti-America, pro-Hanoi crowd of protesters personified most visibly by Jane Fonda.
Like so many of those protesters, Kerry publicly maligned American soldiers, and went on to become a prominent organizer for one of America’s most radical appeasement groups, Vietnam Veterans Against the War (VVAW). He developed close ties with celebrated activists like Ms. Fonda and Ramsey Clark, the radical Attorney General who served under President Lyndon Johnson. He supported a document known as the “People’s Peace Treaty,” which was reportedly composed in Communist East Germany and contained nine points – all of them extracted from a list of Viet Cong conditions for ending the war.
By frequently participating in VVAW demonstrations, Kerry marched alongside many revolutionary Communists.
Exploiting his presence at such rallies, the Communist publication Daily World prominently published photographs of Kerry addressing anti-war protestors, some of whom were carrying banners with portraits of Communist Party leader Angela Davis. Openly organized by known Communists, these rallies were typified by what the December 12, 1971 Herald Traveler called an “abundance of Vietcong flags, clenched fists raised in the air, and placards plainly bearing legends in support of China, Cuba, the USSR, North Korea and the Hanoi government.”
In early 1971 Kerry organized one of the most confrontational anti-war protests of the period, a rally in which nearly 1,000 purported Vietnam veterans gathered on Washington, D.C.’s Mall for what they termed “a limited incursion into the country of Congress.” As part of a carefully orchestrated buildup toward that demonstration, Kerry had recently testified before the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, claiming to have personally heard U.S. soldiers boast about having raped, dismembered, tortured, poisoned, and randomly executed innocent civilians – sometimes even razing entire villages in a manner reminiscent of Ghenghis Khan. During that same time period, Kerry charged that American-perpetrated war crimes in Vietnam were the norm, not the exception – and were carried out with the full awareness and blessing of officers at all levels of American military command. Today, many American veterans and their families deem Kerry’s past public excoriation of U.S. troops as unforgivable acts bordering on treason. As a result, numerous veterans’ groups opposing Kerry’s presidential ambitions have been formed. The root cause of their anti-Kerry sentiment is summarized by the publication U.S. Veteran Dispatch, which notes that Kerry’s aforementioned testimony “occurred while some of his fellow Vietnam veterans were known by the world to be enduring terrible suffering as prisoners of war in North Vietnamese prisons.”
Indeed Senator John McCain has stated that his North Vietnamese captors had used reports of Kerry-led protests to taunt him and his fellow prisoners. Retired General George S. Patton III angrily charged that Kerry’s actions were giving “aid and comfort to the enemy.”
One anti-Kerry group, Vietnam Veterans Against John Kerry (VVAJK), recently formed a national coalition with two other groups – Vietnamese-Americans for Human Rights in Vietnam (VAHRV), and Vietnamese-Americans Against John Kerry (VAAJK). “We represent hundreds of thousands of American veterans,” says VVAJK founder said Ted Sampley, “who do not want to see John Kerry anywhere near the Oval Office.” A formal VVAJK statement reads, “As a national leader of VVAW, Kerry campaigned against the effort of the United States to contain the spread of Communism. He used the blood of servicemen still in the field for his own political advancement by claiming that their blood was being shed unnecessarily or in vain. . . . Under Kerry’s leadership, VVAW members mocked the uniform of United States soldiers by wearing tattered fatigues marked with pro-communist graffiti. They dishonored America by marching in demonstrations under the flag of the Viet Cong enemy.” In a similar spirit, VAAJK member Dan Tran says, “On behalf of tens of thousands of Vietnamese-Americans, we are determined to demonstrate against Senator Kerry all across this nation . . . . John Kerry aided and abetted the Communist government in Hanoi and has hindered any human rights progress in Vietnam.”
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