Obama could have hardly found a more willing partner than John Kerry, to find form to his virulently anti-Israel policies. From the “creative” backdoor sanctions, using the FAA to attempt to close Israel to air traffic (reported earlier in this article), to traditional massive political pressure and the UN security council, Kerry has thrown everything the administration can muster at Israel in order to stop the IDF from achieving its objectives and defeating the terrorist regime next door.
Though Israel can handle Hamas, as Danny Dannon recently stated, it needs a “ceasefire from Obama’s attacks”. The American people are friends and allies of Israel. This friendship is only surpassed by the level of friendship the Israeli people feel for the Americans. America will not find Israel among its critics, even when it blows up weddings in Afghanistan with drones killing 70 people at a time. The American people, are not only Israel’s supporters and friends, but they are far from either to Hamas. And not because they are Arabs or Muslim, but because they are Islamist terrorists.
The stated US policy is not only to confront terrorist organizations wherever they may be of course, and never to negotiate with them, but to even severely punish those countries and regimes that harbor and support such terrorist organizations. The famous Bush doctrine “You’re either with us, or against us”, established after the US saw first hand the nature of Islamic terrorism during 9/11.
In this conflict, the contrast of the reality could not be any sharper. Hamas is not a regime that perhaps harbors or supports terrorists, that may be Qatar (who Obama just signed a massive $11 billion weapons deal with of course) and Iran (a country Obama is negotiating with on several fronts of course, besides allowing them to continue their nuclear weapons program throughout his two terms); it IS the terrorists. Hamas is a terrorist regime… it seems unlikely that any such clear-cut example exists anywhere on earth. Hezbollah controls parts of Lebanon and has a lot of influence throughout, but it is still not the same as the Lebanese government. Nor is it nearly a clear cut example of a terrorist organization despite its international recognition as such. Some can argue Hezbollah is a guerrilla or militant group, Hamas is nothing but textbook terrorism, their actions endlessly directed at civilians alone.
The infamous Taliban of Afghanistan, are not actually Al-Qeada, nor did they execute the 9/11 attacks, they merely refused to turn over Al-Qeada and other terrorists (such as Egyptian Islamic Jihad, a brother organization to the Islamic Jihad Israel is fighting in Gaza currently) to the US. This was enough to charge them with “harboring” terrorists, and the US battled them with just as much vigor as if the Taliban themselves had attacked New York city.
Hamas is not the Taliban, they ARE the al-Qaeda. In Gaza, terrorists are not being harbored, they are in control. Some of the population supports them undoubtedly, and some of the population is terrorized and oppressed by them. Others a bit of both. Fear, corruption and injustice reign in Gaza along with Hamas. The only harboring of terrorists being done in Gaza is that of other terrorist groups, hosted by the ruling terrorist Hamas regime, the Army of Islam, Islamic Jihad, PFLP and the like.
So indeed, the American people are friends of Israel. But in this case, like in many others, the US administration under Obama and Kerry, are not only not representing the will and friendship of the American people, they are obliterating it. The positions it has taken vis a vi Israel and Hamas are indistinguishable from those among the most virulent and hateful enemies of Israel such as Iran and Hamas itself. Even the more moderate Arab states, still no friends to Israel, such as Egypt and Saudi Arabia have been left stunned by the American appeasement of Hamas.
So to surmise, Israel is not invading a country thousands of miles away, because its government supports or harbors terrorists that inflicted one terror attack on its soil, albeit a large one. Rather, Israel is sending troops to its doorstep, on land it has much historical and modern legal claim to as part of Eretz Israel (another subject for elsewhere but true nonetheless), but abandoned anyway in several very significant, very naive, and very painful “gestures” of goodwill in order to achieve peace, and to stop thousands of continuing terrorist attacks. The Arabs in Gaza have been free of “occupation” since 1994, for over 20 years. They have been ruled by their own corrupt and oppressive regimes, be they Fatah or Hamas led for these two decades. Israel has never had a moment of calm or peace from Gaza since its withdrawal in 94, or its destruction of Jewish areas (Gush Katif) in 2005 for the enlargement of Arab Gaza during the so called “disengagement”.
Recently of course, the usual “low-level” intensity of terror has gotten intolerable. Daily shelling by mortar fire and the firing of thousands of rockets and missiles into Israel’s urban centers. Incursions, through tunnels under the border, of heavily armed terrorists attempting to inflict mass casualties on civilians, kidnappings, and murder. Similar tunnels are used to smuggle weapons, provided by the likes of Qatar and Iran, through the Egyptian border. The Egyptian army has also not been spared death and mayhem at the hands of Hamas and its allies.
Meanwhile, the US is using is massive power and influence to make sure that the terrorist regime of Hamas is saved from the IDF, so that it can continue to misrule and oppress the people of Gaza, and of course can continue its unending campaign of terror against Israeli citizens.
The support of an actual terrorist regime, perhaps the only one on earth, against a staunch ally, is difficult to imagine from a US administration if it was not really occurring before our very eyes. It is so shocking, that Walid Assad, Fatah member and spokesman to the Palestinian Authority under Mahmoud Abbas (aka Abu Mazen), complained of Kerry’s “appeasement” of Qatar and Turkey (main Hamas supporters).
This is because the Egyptian ceasefire plan, which was backed by the PA (and unfortunately also immediately accepted by Israel) was rejected by Hamas who prefers ceasefires plans supported by Qatar and Turkey. To call any of those plans a “ceasefire” is a stretch when it is really a declaration of surrender from Israel, and a victory for Hamas who can continue to arm itself and rule in the Gaza strip, under improved conditions (ie easier arms smuggling). This is what John Kerry is trying to push on Israel.
Who is this John Kerry, and from what hole did he crawl out of?
It must be said, that John Kerry’s hatred of Israel may not be fueled (at least entirely) by antisemitism nor is it unique. Kerry, probably hates the US just as much as he hates Israel, and he has done and continues to do everything he can to weaken the US as well as weaken Israel. The only real difference is that the power that he holds to hurt the US is far more limited than the one he holds that can hurt Israel. What is immediately at stake in the short term, for both countries in the issues that he holds sway over is likewise far more in the case of Israel, a small country, surrounded by enemies, being currently (sirens going off at the writing of this article) bombarded by this terrorist regime.
John Kerry must be one of history’s most successful empty suits, self promoter and ultimate “convenenciero”. The term, quasi-slang common in Mexican Spanish, is textbook John Kerry, and cannot really be translated…very loosely an “opportunist”. The Anglo-Saxon world, must have not produced enough of these characters to define them.
It is difficult to say that John Kerry has had many opportunities for an honest day’s work. He attended college while continuing to apply for student draft deferments to avoid going to Vietnam. When his fourth request was denied, he then “volunteered” to the Navy rather than be drafted, and then perhaps end up in the Vietnam jungles facing real enemies.
Kerry’s Military Record
His first tour was on board a missile frigate, the USS Gridely. Though there is nothing wrong with the following fact, it must be noted that this deployment was pretty uneventful in terms combat. The ship was everywhere from New Zealand and the Philippines to San Diego and the Vietnam theater. It did spend about 4 months in the Vietnam area, far from coast, mostly on standby to rescue downed aviators (by helicopter pilots taking off from the ship of course, not ensign Kerry).
Kerry, always calculating and in control of his next move, had already applied for his next transfer. It seems he wanted to be “around” Vietnam, for his self promoting purposes, but not really “in it” – that might be dangerous. He requested Swift Boat service. In his own words from his book, Kerry explains:
I didn’t really want to get involved in the war…When I signed up for the swift boats, they had very little to do with the war. They were engaged in coastal patrolling and that’s what I thought I was going to be doing.
Tours in Vietnam were of course, typically 12 month tours. Kerry started his infamous Vietnam tour with 1 month training for his new Swift Boat service, followed by a whopping 3 months of actual service. That’s it.
During these 3 months, Kerry was able to receive 3 Purple Hearts (the medal for being wounded in combat) for suspiciously light wounds. None required hospitalization nor any time off for duty. They were all for either small shrapnel pieces, usually from an unusual source, or from bumping into things. Receiving 3 Purple Heats, qualified Kerry to end his tour and leave Vietnam, an opportunity he quickly took. Was this common? Well according to much research done by his critical former comrades, he was the only Swift Boat sailor (and certainly the only officer) that anyone can find that cut short his tour of duty by using three Purple Hearts. No one else that was not killed or seriously injured, either tried to or at least succeeded in cutting their tour short. This point has not been contested by Kerry or his supporters.
So far as we are able to determine, Kerry was the only Swift sailor ever to leave Vietnam without completing the standard one-year tour of duty, other than those who were seriously wounded or killed.
A brief summary of his Purple Hearts:
1. Kerry fired on an unarmed group or of Vietnamese on a Sampan (a small wooden boat commonly used in rural South East Asia) who started to run away from the soldiers. In Kerry’s own words “running away like gazelles”. Kerry receives an incredibly light wound from shrapnel or debris coming off the Sampan due to the crew’s own fire used in destroying it.
Dr. Louis Letson, who claims to have treated the wound, said he treated it with bacitracin and a bandage. As a Paratrooper in the IDF still currently serving in the reserves, I can tell you that it takes a special type of person to go fetch a Purple Heart for a wound of this (lack of) magnitude, when it is admittedly self inflicted. Kerry’s commanding officer at the time, also has questioned the validity of this Purple Heart and that he rejected the idea when Kerry went to him asking for one.
2. His second Purple Heart came while Kerry was fleeing the Bo De river back to safety in February 1969. Helicopters were to escort the swift boats up the river. When they returned to base to refuel after being fired at, the boats were left without this cover. In Kerry’s words:
We therefore had a choice: to wait for what was not a confirmed return by the helos [and] give any snipers more time to set up an ambush for our exit or we could take a chance and exit immediately without any cover. We chose the latter.
Never doubting initiative when it’s about saving his own skin, Kerry chose to race down the river back to safety. During this retreat, he claimed to have been hit in the leg by more shrapnel from an RPG fired at the boat. This may be Kerry’s only real wound inflicted by an enemy. If so, it was also quite minor and Kerry needed no time off nor hospitalization for it.
3. The third Purple Heart was received either from bumping his forearm arm against the bulkhead (where according to his medical file he received “contusions”), and/or from a “small piece of shrapnel” Kerry received in the buttocks from a grenade tossed into a rice bin (by him or his friends). Both of these occurred on the same day.
Having racked up his 3 Purple Hearts in record speed, Kerry was out of Vietnam and starting his political career, that he immediately launched and has sustained for decades, based on a glamorized a “war hero” status. Initially he was rose to fame (and ran from congress immediately after returning from Vietnam) by virulently attacking not only the Vietnam War but the soldiers serving there as war criminals (himself included). In later years, he has simply glamorized his past as a “war hero” and attacked his political opponents for either their lack of service during the Vietnam War or its quality (as in the Case G W Bush who was a pilot in the National Guard), which is nothing short of amazing.
He aligned himself with the most radical anti-war and anti-american groups, met with enemy representatives, and gave shocking testimony before the Senate subcommittees in 1971, a portion quoted here:
There are all kinds of atrocities, and I would have to say that yes, I committed the same kinds 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 caliber 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 Convention 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 on the air raid strike areas, I think that these men, by the letter of the law, the same letter of the law that tried Lieutenant Calley, are war criminals.
To be thorough and fair, what he quotes here are not necessarily war crimes, a fire zone for example is simply an area where you know or believe there are only enemy soldiers, no friendly or civilians therein, and so forces fire heavily and freely into it. But other Kerry stories that he talked or wrote about elsewhere are most definitely war crimes.
About others he generously stated:
They told the stories at times they had personally raped, cut off ears, cut off heads, taped wires from portable telephones to human genitals and turned up the power, cut off limbs, blown up bodies, randomly shot at civilians, razed villages in fashion reminiscent of Genghis Khan, shot cattle and dogs for fun, poisoned food stocks, and generally ravaged the countryside of South Vietnam in addition to the normal ravage of war, and the normal and very particular ravaging which is done by the applied bombing power of this country.
Medals of Bravery
Most importantly, Kerry did not leave Vietnam without two medals of bravery, a Bronze and Silver star. Altogether, the 5 medals obtained during a 3 month Swift Boat Tour that saw no real combat is quite an impressive feat. The details of the incidents leading to his citations have been argued extensively, and there is no need to enter into too many details here. Kerry has thus far declined to release to the public his full medical and military records (odd for a person whose based his entire political career on what those records purportedly say), though he has released selected documents and allowed certain “chosen” media outlets to privately view others. For those interested, you may want to view the video below by critics of Kerry’s service, fellow soldiers and officers that served in the same Swift Boat (Coastal 11) division, and a list of the available original documents here.
Kerrry’s own version of the events has changed quite a bit over the years, depending on the campaign. A few words briefly summarizing his service and the two citations.
By Kerry’s own words, his service is filled with what most people would consider war crimes. His accounts are filled mostly with events of firing at peasant Sampans, including him and his crew killing a baby inside of one. Kerry blames everyone but himself (the commanding officer of his boat) for these atrocities, as if President Nixon in far away Washington had ordered him to kill that baby.
Destroying all Sampans in certain areas may very well have been an order in certain areas at certain times, if we are to believe him, but that does not mean you have to murder children inside them. That can only come from either excessive fear (ordering people out and looking inside may at times be more dangerous than simply shooting at the small boats without warning), indifference, or outright malice. Not sure which of these Kerry suffered from.
In fact, even if the orders were quite literally to ambush and destroy civilians in this way, which is doubtful, nothing on earth says that a moral and reasonable officer will execute the order in this way on the field where he is the commanding officer. It should not be too difficult to destroy a small unarmed wooden boat after clearing it of babies. More than that, most if not all western militaries including the US military at the time, require officers and soldiers to disobey unlawful orders when possible.
In this regard, John Kerry is either a virulent liar, presumably driven madly by desires of self promotion and/or hatred of his country and military; or a war criminal (or both). In either case, it’s a heck of a man to be lectured by about civilian casualties.
Kerry’s silver star was awarded for his actions during a small ambush of a Swift Boat squad of three boats led by Kerry. In the event, a VC apparently fired an RPG at Kerry’s boat which missed. The boat’s gunner than wounded the man with his machine gun. According to most accounts, the man continued to “run” and escape into the jungle. Kerry (along with another soldier) chased the wounded unarmed (his RPG having been fired) man and killed him. There is some disputed fluff regarding the accounts, mostly regarding what the other two boats were doing at the same time, but the above facts are virtually undisputed by all accounts. Some dispute whether the young man (or boy) was armed at all at worse, or at best whether he was with a still-loaded (or what they thought was still-loaded) RPG, and how badly he was wounded… but Kerry was basically given a Silver Start by beaching his boat against regulations and dispatching a single, wounded, and likely unarmed enemy.
Kerry’s commanding officer, George Elliot, has stated that he did know all the facts at the time of his approval of the Silver Star citation, and that he regrets having approved it. He also said that at the time, he did know whether to court-martial Kerry for beaching his boat or give him a medal. Certainly, the exaggerated version of events (in an action report probably written by Kerry himself) probably helped him make up his mind in favor of the latter.
Kerry’s bronze star is an even more magnificent exaggeration. A 5 boat group led by Swift Boat commander Larry Thurlow, who has criticized Kerry and the merit of his citation, was returning to base on the Bay Hap river. One of the boats in the group ran into a mine. All boats present stayed on the scene to help the badly mauled swift boat and its crew.
All but Kerry’s boat of course, that started running away under his directions. At some point, either during the blast, or Kerry’s fast turn and run, Jim Rassman, who was being ferried in Kerry’s boat had fallen into the water. When Kerry and his crew realized this, he turned around and came back to pick him up. Thurlow and others insist that there was no hostile fire throughout the incident, only the mine. Others have claimed otherwise (perhaps as was common the boats were firing into the jungle in case there was an ambush, but there was no hostile fire returning). Once Kerry returned and pulled Rassman out of the water, he rejoined the remaining boats in helping in the “cleanup” of the original damaged boat that had struck a mine (evacuating wounded, towing and the like).
Even if the most favorable (to Kerry) version is to be believed, Kerry got a Bronze Star for picking up a fallen soldier out of the water despite his arm hurting (as it had hit the bulwark of the boat). Wit this “wound”, together with the light would in the buttocks sustained earlier that day in the clumsy destruction of a rice bin (kerry seems to have loved civilian destruction, big and small alike), he went and got this third Purple Star along with his Bronze Star; and went home to protest the Vietnam war and declare all the 2.5 million servicemen who had served in Vietnam, war criminals just like himself.
Again, a full account of his military service would require a much longer piece, and would include many more details including Kerry’s claim that he was in secrets missions in Cambodia which are untrue. For comparison sake, let us examine what a more legitimate Bronze Star and Silver Star citation for the same war look like.
Oliver North – Also 1 Silver Star and 1 Bronze Star
The official citation for the Silver Star for Lt Col. Oliver North said that (according to the NY Times in 1986):
when another Marine platoon was pinned down by the North Vietnamese, Lieutenant North rapidly moved his own platoon into position and ”personally initiated an aggressive assault against the North Vietnamese Army emplacement,” forcing ‘‘the stunned hostile soldiers to withdraw to another hill.”
The citation said Lieutenant North then ”assumed the foremost assault position, and seemingly oblivious to the intense machinegun fire impacting around him, led his men against the hostile position.’‘ Action Called Inspiring
The citation says he stopped his attacks only for a new supply of ammunition and a supporting air strike and then ”calmly braving the intense fire of the tenacious hostile soldiers” made a final assault that ”enabled his men to seize the objective” and ”inspired all who observed him.”
As Lance Corporal Tuten who served under North recalled:
The first platoon got ambushed by NVA regulars with two .30-caliber machine guns, grenades, and mines. Most of them were injured real bad or killed. One of the troops radioed back and said they needed help. Lt. North said that we’d move up. I said to myself, ‘Here we go again.’
The Bronze Star citation is for a battle in the same region, in which North was swept off the turret by a cannon during an enemy attack. He grabbed an RPG and climbed back onto the tank, and “completely disregarded his own safety as he boldly remained in his dangerously exposed position on top the tank to deploy his men”. He then led an assault that killed 7 North Vietnamese enemy.
Meanwhile, Kerry imagined everyone was going around shooting unarmed peasants like him and getting medals for it. Lt. Colonel North also received two Purple Hearts, but refused to get a third, in order to finish his tour and stay by his men. Lt. North, wrote the following open letter to Mr. Kerry regarding his actions in Vietnam and thereafter (a great read for anyone interested).
One cannot find the myriad (or any) of detractors and critics among Oliver North’s combat comrades. You can find plenty of political enemies thereafter, but not fellow veterans in any way opposed to him. On the contrary, there is nothing but praise, even reluctant praise for his service record by those who opposed him later on for political or personal reasons.
North was Randall Herrod’s first platoon commander for example, when he arrived in Vietnam in 1969. “I never saw him get nervous or make a mistake in the field,” said Herrod, also a lance corporal, who now lives in Wetumka, Oklahoma.
It was a tradition in Vietnam that as a soldier neared the end of his tour, he was allowed to go to the rear and wait out his last few weeks. But that’s not the way it worked in North’s platoon. “Our men wanted to stay in the field with him as long as they could,” says Herrod. “He’s an incredible person.”
Sufficed to say that at the very least, Kerry’s military record and service has been greatly exaggerated, and at worse grossly and fraudulently exploited. He is by his own words, either a liar or a war criminal (or again, both) since he leaves no other choices.
However, Vietnam was a difficult stint, and many men coped with it differently. Despite that at best case, the obvious exaggerated citations, no one would attack John Kerry for his Vietnam record on its own right. So he wanted to leave as soon as possible, and used up every scratch as an excuse… fine… so he was able to get a few undeserved medals, “Ok”. The problem is that he has turned this undistinguished, to say the least, record into the basis of a personality cult; at the same time elevating himself to war hero while hating the war, the army and his country. The unwilling but heroic warrior, a voice for the veterans. Rambo. And even worse, at every turn, he not only has used his record to get elected by praising his own service, but has attacked everyone else’s service (or lack of).
Just a taste of a Kerry diatribe, in 2006:
I’m sick and tired of these despicable Republican attacks that always seem to come from those who never can be found to serve in war, but love to attack those who did. I’m not going to be lectured by a stuffed suit White House mouthpiece standing behind a podium
More hurtful to his fellow veterans, immediately upon returning from Vietnam, he launched a national self promoting campaign that tainted all the servicemen in that thankless war as war criminals. He petitioned and got an early discharge in order to run for congress. Or how about for a man constantly claiming to represent veterans and wanting to honor national service, this statement to California students in the same year:
We’re here to talk about education. But I want to say something before that….You know, education, if you make the most of it and you study hard and you do your homework and you make an effort to be smart, you can do well. If you don’t, you get stuck in Iraq.
Please remember that there is no and was no draft for Iraq. A war Mr. Kerry voted for. So the people there are volunteers, patriots who believe in serving their nation. Kerry seems to think otherwise.
After his “Service”
After divorcing his wife, who claims to have been depressed by his obsession with political life, he married a Heinz fortune heiress and reported billionaire, Teresa Heinz.
The heiress, more than 5 years Kerry’s senior, was previously married to Republican John Heinz III who died in an airplane crash in 1991. The couple lives an affluent life to say the least, which includes a six-floor, $7 million townhome in Boston’s Beacon Hill neighborhood, a $9 million ocean-front home on Nantucket, a $5 million ski retreat in Idaho, a $4 million estate in Fox Chapel, Pennsylvania, near the Heinz family’s home base of Pittsburgh, and a $5 million home in the Georgetown neighborhood of Washington, D.C.
Kerry, whose wealthy great-aunt had paid for him to study in elite schools, is now wealthy in his own right by family inheritances from the Forbes family. By all accounts, he was the wealthiest senator in the senate throughout his tenure. Not the tiniest fraction of this wealth, having been earned by Kerry in any way.
And while Kerry is an avid critic of tax rates on the rich which he always wants to raise, this is of course “Income Tax”. You have to work in some way to qualify for it. There is no tax on simply being very rich, and while he has criticized the low tax rates on capital gains and dividends (which are in fact in many cases a second taxation after Corporate Income Tax), there is no tax rate at all on simply having money. On this issue, I have written an interesting article on the issue before. Incredibly, Kerry even attacked Romney for his “low” tax rate (again, since it is mostly dividends which have already been subject to corporate income tax prior), while his and his wife’s are clearly lower.
Kerry, basically did 3 months in ‘Nam, racked up a bunch of medals, defamed his country, called the US army the army of “Genghis Khan”, admitted war crimes, met with the enemy (Viet Cong representatives and close associates of Ho Chi Minh), ran for congress (and later for Lt. Governor). After less than 1 term as Lt. Governor of Massachusetts, he ran for the US Senate and there was one of the longest-serving and wealthiest Senators from 1985 to 2013 (while running for President or VP a couple of times of course). Finally most recently he left the Senate to become Obama’s Secretary of State, so far a disastrous reign.
The people of the State Department, though not ideologically opposed to him, as they had been serving under an almost as equally left wing leader, Hillary Clinton, have had negative things to say about him. Officials have been quoted as saying Kerry is unfocused, and “all over the place” and the day-to day routine work of the state department has suffered under him because of his style and frequent trips abroad.
They have complained that he is aloof, uninterested in the mundane “bread and butter” side of the State Department which is Washington work. Ambassador Thomas R. Pickering, a former undersecretary of State, has said of Kerry: “A lot of people in the State Department complain he is isolated on the seventh floor when he is there and he is gone so much they’re not sure what he wants to do”.
The other John
Senator McCain, arguably a real Vietnam War hero, and undisputedly a man who did quite the opposite of John Kerry. McCain was shot down over Vietnam and violently captured by the enemy. He was tortured and pressed to broadcast anti-American statements. He refused to do under torture what John Kerry did all too willingly while in the luxury of freedom. McCain, due to his high level connections (namely his father), was given a chance of freedom while a POW. He refused, saying that he would not be released before those men that were captured before him.
John Kerry on the other hand, took his 3 scratches and bailed on his friends and his men after a 3 month stint in Vietnam. John McCain was held for over 5 years as POW, after a military and Vietnam career that was by then nearly a decade long. His time as POW included 2 years in solitary confinement, torture, malnutrition, and denial of medical care for wounds among many other harrowing ordeals, leaving him maimed for life, and yet McCain refused to meet with anti-war groups or take part in any other charade that could be used by the enemy as a propaganda coup.
John Kerry willingly sought all those publicities, not just meeting with anti-war groups, but joining and forming some of the most radical among them; meeting (probably illegally) with the enemy while still in the reserves and the like. Kerry seemed to enjoy meeting with the Viet Cong, because it did not suffice, and he later controversially and likely illegally once again, during April 1985 visited Nicaragua’s Sandinista regime. I don’t know if he liked these two groups for being his country’s enemies, or just because they were communists. John Kerry’s statements against the US were famously used in the torture of American POWs, as they were used as evidence that America’s war was illegal and awash with war crimes. Kerry’s portrait sown below meanwhile hangs proudly in the communist Vietnamese Communist War Remnants Museum – formerly known as the “War Crimes Museum”.
So what does John McCain have to say about his fellow Vietnam “war hero” and veteran John Kerry?
McCain, a moderate by any measure in the GOP, has in the past been tolerant of Kerry and even cordial. But once he took over the reigns of the nation’s foreign policy, McCain could no longer hold back. In 2013, he called Kerry a “Human Wrecking Ball”, and that he was “very disappointed”. He went on:
Our whole policy in the Middle East—and it reverberates around the world, by the way—is in such disarray that I have never seen anything like it in my lifetime,
Later in 2014, both men exchanged attacks on each other, where John McCain accused Kerry of presiding over a “trifecta” of foreign policy disasters. That is Syria, Iran and the Israeli Arab conflict. A few months later, McCain could probably add a few more disasters to this list, from the ISIS takeover of much of Iraq and Syria to Putin’s unchallenged advances into Ukraine and elsewhere. Not to mention what he is doing currently against Israel.
In fact, this is what McCain has said recently on the current issue:
I want to take a moment to talk to you about the ongoing conflict between Hamas and Israel. I regret the loss of innocent life on both sides, but I fully support Israel’s right to defend its country and its citizens.
Furthermore, I reject claims of ‘moral equivalence’ between Israel and Hamas. Hamas, a terrorist group operating from civilian locations, is indiscriminately firing hundreds of rockets into Israel with the clear intent of killing and injuring as many civilians — men, women, and children — as possible. Meanwhile, Israel is going to extraordinary lengths to protect civilians in Gaza, including notifying civilians of impending strikes and sending its own forces into Gaza on the ground so as to more accurately target the threats.
To understand Israel’s plight, it’s helpful to put ourselves in their shoes: If rockets indiscriminately rained down on civilian areas of Arizona from across our border with Mexico, how would we react? Would we show the same kind of restraint and precision that Israel strives to achieve?
As I have done throughout my career in Congress, I will continue to strongly support our ally Israel, including by advocating for military assistance, making possible advances like the Iron Dome missile defense system which has saved the lives of countless Israeli citizens targeted by the missiles from Hamas.
Interesting, no virulent war crime accusations from the man who endured them, while we have gotten plenty from the man who self admittedly committed them.
A few more of his debacles while Secretary of State. He characteristically lied in defending himself by saying that “no one” saw the ISIS takeover of much of Iraq coming. As Fox news reported, and even a myriad of articles here on the Lighthouse have warned about since the beginning of the so called “Arab Spring”, the truth is far different.
Lahur Talabani, head of Kurdish intelligence bluntly stated while on the receiving end of the incompetence of the John Kerry State Department “I have completely lost hope in America after listening to President Barack Obama.”
Famously of course, Vladamir Putin called John Kerry a liar in regards to discussing al-Qaeda and other jihadists infiltration of the Syrian opposition.
This was very unpleasant and surprising for me. We talk to them (the Americans), and we assume they are decent people, but he is lying and he knows that he is lying. This is sad.
Kerry not only supported the sunni jihadist takeover of Syria from Assad and his minority Alawite regime, but failed to achieve it. The arrogant and gaff prone Kerry was calculating coordinating an international use of force on Syria, much like the one that ended with jihadist mobs lynching Qadaffi and his son for breakfast, and a US ambassador for lunch (events we warned about and covered at the Lighthouse in many articles – here is one). Kerry let out what Syria could do to avoid military action, in effect giving up its chemical weapons, and this snowballed into Syria at least nominally complying and Kerry’s efforts unraveling. Either he was easily played by the Russians, or they were simply unaware that the Secretary of State does not mean what he says when speaking about what needs to happen to avoid something as serious as say… war.
We have talked a bit about Kerry’s self inflated Vietnam service that catapulted him into public life to begin with. We have also covered a few of his “achievements” while Secretary of State recently. What about his nearly three decades in the Senate? We know he was there, and we know he was rich, what were his legislative achievements?
Kerry during Three Decades in the Senate
Well, to former Bill Clinton political adviser, Dick Morris, John Kerry was a “back-bencher”. In 2004, he wrote:
Where did his 20 years in the Senate go? Oddly, his absence of biography confirms the impression I formed of him during my White House years: He’s a back-bencher. I never can recall a single time that his name came up in any discussion of White House strategy on anything. He was the man who wasn’t there.
His voting record as far as being present, is bad but not atrocious. While govtrack reports that the lifetime average for missed Senate roll call votes for Senators serving in Jan 2013 with Kerry, is 2.0%. Kerry’s missed percentage is 385% higher at 7.7%. Considering how terrible the rest of record is, and the long Senate history he has, this is probably Kerry’s best item on his record.
Kerry, the ultimate self promoter, is famous for attaching his name to bills. He often “co-sponsor” bills that he has little to do with, simply to get some press. Many congressman do this at times, but Kerry has made it an art-form. In contrast, he has an amazingly poor showing of having passed bills or even resolutions that were truly his own or that he at least was the primary sponsor.
From 1985 until May of 2008, in about 23 years in the Senate Kerry had been the primary sponsor of only 5 bills and 4 resolutions. They are incredibly minor in nature, for example the joint resolution designating October 22 through 28, 1989, as “World Population Awareness Week”, and A Bill To Redesignate The Federal Building Located At 380 Trapelo Road In Waltham, Massachusetts, As The “Frederick C. Murphy Federal Center”.
The highlight perhaps being the Bill To Authorize Appropriations For The Marine Mammal Protection Act Of 1972 , passed in 1994.
In typical misleading fashion, Kerry defended himself from this charge in the 2004 campaign:
Once again, the president is misleading America. I’ve actually passed 56 individual bills that I’ve personally written and, in addition to that, and not always under my name, there is amendments on certain bills.
Misleading at the very least, who knows what he is counting and how – he is starting by counting all pieces that he “worked on” and stayed in the Senate but did not pass the House, and did not become law, or simply straight out lie. Bills and resolutions that count him as primary sponsor and were passed into law at the time were 5 and 4 respectively, a total of nine. Not 56 bills, but five.
Since this was a big issue during the campaign, he apparently tried to step it up in subsequent years. The grand total for his 27 years in the Senate were 17 bills and resolutions. Almost all of them incredibly minor, and most political savvy readers would be hard pressed to remember what any of them were or did. What about co-sponsored bills?
That is a different story. According to govtrack, Kerry “co-sponsored” 494 bills that became law in his Senate career, and a whopping 3,053 bills that were referred to committee but did not make it into law. Kerry likes attaching his name to things.
Kerry’s Cosponsored an anti-Hamas Bill
Let’s look at one interesting item he attached his name to, as a named cosponsor:
The Palestinian Anti-Terrorism Act of 2006, signed into law by President Bush that same year.
This bill was passed in 2006 after the realization that the PA would now itself be controlled by Hamas, a terrorist organization. The US did not want to be directly or indirectly aiding a terrorist group. Now, at the time, Hamas did not still have any executive power in the PA, having only won a majority in the parliamentary elections (which PA president and PLO Chairman Abu Mazen was resisting), and it most definitely did not control territory on its own, not Gaza nor anywhere else. But the mere implication of Hamas influence on the PA and on certain ministries was enough for the US to move, bipartisanly, to block funds that could end up helping Hamas and/or end up financing incitement and terrorism.
This bill made it illegal for the US to support the Palestinian Authority financially, to negotiate with it, to grant Visas to its officials and those affiliated with it, and to undertake any of a host other activities in support or relation of the PA until the Hamas controlled PA complied with various anti-terror requirements; for example recognizing Israel’s right to exist as the Jewish state, dismantling terror infrastructure, and abide by all previous agreements.
Note: All quoted parts of the bill are from the Library of Congress summary, written by the non-partisan Congressional Research Service
For example, any support of the PA would be stopped until:
no PA ministry, agency, or instrumentality is controlled by Hamas unless the Hamas-controlled PA has publicly acknowledged the Jewish state of Israel’s right to exist and is adhering to all previous agreements and understandings with the United States, Israel, and the international community, including agreements and understandings pursuant to the Roadmap;
the Hamas-controlled PA has made demonstrable progress toward purging from its security services individuals with ties to terrorism, dismantling all terrorist infrastructure and cooperating with Israel’s security services, halting anti-American and anti-Israel incitement, and ensuring democracy and financial transparency.
The bill also states that the new US policy shall be to:
(2) promote democracy and the cessation of terrorism and incitement in institutions and territories controlled by the Palestinian Authority (PA); and(3) urge members of the international community to avoid contact with and refrain from financially supporting the terrorist organization Hamas until it agrees to recognize Israel, renounce violence, disarm, and accept prior agreements, including the Roadmap.
In order for the PA to be supported by the US, the President must “certify” the PA, and declare to Congress that it has a bided by the bill’s requirements. It is abundantly clear that the PA has not ever abided by the terms of the bill, not while it was a Hamas led PA, not after the break between Fatah and Hamas, and certainly not now that the PA is back under a Hamas-Fatah unity government.
Now when the bill was passed, the PA still held control over Gaza, besides its areas of control in the West Bank. Under Bush’s leadership, the PA, in large part due to this bill, was in great pressure to rein in Hamas. In 2007, Hamas led a violent takeover of the Gaza Strip, ousting all Fatah forces. It has since then reigned the Gaza strip with an iron fist, tolerating within its borders other terrorist groups such as Islamic Jihad, the PFLP, The Army of Islam and others.
The bill was meant to punish a PA that was even significantly influenced by Hamas. Of course, it would apply all the more so, not to mention so would a whole other range of anti-terrorism laws, to a purely Hamas regime. Hamas, recognized by the US, Israel and Europe as a terrorist organization, is already obviously banned from all measures of support.
This bill not only made negotiating with and supporting such a regime, but made it law that the US should do its utmost to make sure others don’t do it either. This bill, cosponsored by John Kerry, has been basically ignored by this administration that sees not only the administration negotiating directly with Hamas, and those that openly support it including Qatar and Turkey, but favoring it over a democracy and long time US ally – Israel.
Section 9 of the bill is particularly ironic
Prohibits funds for the State Department from being used by any U.S. officer or employee to negotiate with members or official representatives of Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, or any other Palestinian terrorist organization
until:(1) recognizes Israel’s right to exist;(2) renounces terrorism;(3) dismantles the terrorist infrastructure; and(4) recognizes all previous agreements and understandings between Israel and the PA.
This means that the funds Kerry has used in traveling and negotiating with Hamas, not to mention the vast funds to pressure Israel to surrender to Hamas’ demands, have been completely illegal.
How has this happened? Well, mostly by the media’s silence. I have seen this bill reported nowhere in relation to the current conflict. Though there are movements in certain countries (Holland for example has done so) including the US (under Rand Paul) to end all financial support for the PA (embarrassingly still largely supported by the US and Israel).
The bill has a range of exemptions that the president can use in order to void certain provisions. However, many of those exemptions have themselves exemptions that they would not apply directly to Hamas and/or Hamas members. So any close analysis of the bill, the past few years, and the current conflict, would conclude that the Obama administration and John Kerry are breaking the law, specifically a bi-partisan piece of legislation that was ironically cosponsored by John Kerry.
This is all of course legal formalities… any regard to long-standing US policy and the spirit of the law, would find this administration in the most flagrant of violations; supporting a terrorist regime, actively bombarding civilian populations, against an ally.
In 2002, as part of his strong speech convincing the US Senate that the US should give the President the power to act in Iraq, including military invasion, specifically because of the threat of Saddam’s weapons of mass destruction, and specifically NOT because of any other reason, Kerry stated:
Every nation has the right to act preemptively if it faces an imminent and grave threat.
I suppose John Kerry meant every nation except Israel, which not only has no right to preemptively attack Hamas knowing it is an imminent and grave threat at its doorstep, but also no right to act at all, even AFTER she herself is attacked and bombed by a terrorist regime with thousands of rockets, mortars, underground terror incursions and kidnappings.
Maybe Kerry does hate Israel even more than he does the USA, or maybe its just that he does not depend on Israeli voters, a fact that “constrains” him in his hatred of the US (as he does depend on American voters).
Kerry on other security issues and Iraq
And having come to the Senate largely based on his foreign relations views and military record, has his Senate record on those issues been clear?
Kerry of course, famously and endlessly attacked the Bush administration throughout the Iraq war. Most people would be very surprised to find that he had voted for it. Here are only a few of some of the Kerry quotes on the matter:
Without question, we need to disarm Saddam Hussein. He is a brutal, murderous dictator, leading an oppressive regime … He presents a particularly grievous threat because he is so consistently prone to miscalculation … And now he is miscalculating America’s response to his continued deceit and his consistent grasp for weapons of mass destruction… So the threat of Saddam Hussein with weapons of mass destruction is real….
If you don’t believe…Saddam Hussein is a threat with nuclear weapons, then you shouldn’t vote for me.
In 2001, on CNN’s Larry King, he was asked whether the war should be expanded beyond Afghanistan, to all terrorist places:
Oh, I think we clearly have to keep the pressure on terrorism globally. This doesn’t end with Afghanistan by any imagination. And I think the president has made that clear. I think we [Congress] have made that clear. Terrorism is a global menace. It’s a scourge. And it is absolutely vital that we continue, for instance, Saddam Hussein. I think we —
KING: We should go to Iraq?
KERRY: Well, that — what do you and how you choose to do it, we have a lot of options.Absent smoking gun evidence linking Saddam Hussein to the immediate events of September 11, the president doesn’t have the authorization to proceed forward there [Note: Right, he didn’t, until Kerry and the other Senators gave it to him].
But we clearly are he ought to proceed to put pressure on him with respect to the weapons of mass destruction. I think we should be supporting an opposition. There are other ways for us, clandestinely and otherwise, to put enormous pressure on him and I think we should do it.
Earlier in 1997:
We must recognize that there is no indication that Saddam Hussein has any intention of relenting. So we have an obligation of enormous consequence, an obligation to guarantee that Saddam Hussein cannot ignore the United Nations. He cannot be permitted to go unobserved and unimpeded toward his horrific objective of amassing a stockpile of weapons of mass destruction.
The threat of Saddam Hussein with weapons of mass destruction is real, but as I said, it is not new. It has been with us since the end of that war, and particularly in the last 4 years we know after Operation Desert Fox failed to force him to reaccept them, that he has continued to build those weapons. He has had a free hand for 4 years to reconstitute these weapons, allowing the world, during the interval, to lose the focus we had on weapons of mass destruction and the issue of proliferation
Also in 2002
And while the administration has failed to prove any direct link between Iraq and the events of September 11, can we afford to ignore the possibility that Saddam Hussein might provide weapons of destruction to some terrorist group bent on destroying the United States? Can we really leave this to chance, when we could eliminate this deadly threat by acting now in concert with the international community, or alone if the threat is imminent..? In my view, we cannot.
And finally in 2003
Iraq may not be the war on terror itself, but it is critical to the outcome of the war on terror, and therefore any advance in Iraq is an advance forward in that…
Just like it is incredible that Kerry would attack Bush about his military service, it is likewise incredible that he attacked him relentlessly on Iraq as if he had always known there was no WMD, and that he was against attacking Iraq in the first place. There definitely is an Iraq war that John Kerry voted against, and that was the very successful Persian Gulf War of 1991 under Bush sr, where an international coalition led by the US ousted Saddam’s army from Kuwait. A ravaged and pillaged country Kerry would have preferred to leave to the wolves, not to mention leave its incredible oil wealth and intact massive army to Saddam Hussein.
After the very successful war, Kerry of course criticized Bush for not having gone on to Iraq, and instead, having accomplished the mission (of liberating Kuwait), leaving a stable regime that could resist incursions by Shia Iran, or Sunni ISIS for example. G W Bush, with this in mind, made sure that at the end of his second term there still was such a bulwark in Iraq against those forces though the journey as we all know was far from easy. Under Obama’s tenure, the sacrifices made to achieve that, have proven to have been largely in vain. Kerry and Obama had no better answer to the ISIS takeover than to claim surprise and turn to an even more dangerous enemy, Iran, for help.
Yes, Kerry has always been wrong on Iraq, and always flip-flopped on where he stood.
Kerry, Weakness and Lies
The Center for Security Policy, a conservative, Washington-based think tank committed to “promoting international peace through American strength,” has rated Kerry among the worst on Capitol Hill when it comes to national security and defense. In 1995, the Center gave Kerry a score of five out of a possible 100 points. Two years later, in 1997, Kerry earned a mind-blowing score of exactly zero.
It goes without saying that Kerry has voted against the strategic missile defense shield, as well as U.S. withdrawal from the antiquated Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty
But now Kerry is showing “strength”…he is mustering all of the US’s power to bully Israel into submitting to Hamas’, Qatar’s and Iran’s will.
He masquerades as a “regular Joe” when he is an elitist billionaire who has hardly worked a day in his life. He pretends to be a veteran and a war hero, when he, despite his best efforts to avoid it, had a short 3 month tour in Vietnam where it is doubtful he ever saw anything remotely like “combat”. He pretends to care about war crimes and the people of Gaza, when he is a self admitted war criminal himself, and the architect of untold thousands of deaths across the muslim world, either by his support of the wrong side, or his incompetent failures that prolong the conflict. Pretending to be a patriot, he is hated by large number of his fellow veterans, he is an internationalist, a Francophil, a far leftist (if he has any principle at all), and so ashamed of his first book (“New Solder”) that he refuses its printing.
He has so far succeeding in making US allies lose faith in their friendship with America, while succeeded even more in erasing any fear that US enemies might had still harbored this long into an Obama administration. For sure he has eroded the respect either may have for the USA.
I urge the Israeli government, under Netanyahu to not give into this man’s bullying pressure, and I urge our friends, the American people, to remove this worthless man from the high office he has been given. Kerry loves to parade with a few military lackeys, as if they were the band of brothers, it is unfortunate that he is an old man, and not fit to challenge to a test of manhood, or “soldiery” as Hamish would have said.
Kerry, the arrogant, lazy, rambling, spoiled, manipulative, lying, calculating opportunist and self promoter –el covenenciero, is abusing the power and will of the American people for his own twisted ends. His ends lie always in his own aggrandizement and/or the uplifting of enemy and/or communist groups. Perhaps he really is tortured by the cowardly and terrible things he did in Vietnam, and he has built up a world view in which all Americans, all Western powers (except France of course), certainly Israel always, are guilty of such things…
but the reality is quite different John, the overwhelming majority of soldiers of both the USA and Israel have and continue to be honorable men and women who are the furthest thing from the things you have accused them to be; and it is a real shame that the American people have been fooled into appointing one of the few who wasn’t, to the heights of power.