Mark Steyn has a brilliant column on why John Kerry’s military service is a cover for his weakness on defense. Despite Kerry’s distinguished service in Vietnam, the actions he took afterwards make him unfit to be Commander in Chief. His actions as a member of the anti-war movement can only be described as shameful. He deliberately attempted to harm the mission that his own former comrades were still trying to achieve in Vietnam, endangering not only their mission, but their lives. As Steyn notes:
The only relevant lesson from Vietnam is this: then, as now, it was not possible for the enemy to achieve military victory over the US; their only hope was that America would, in effect, defeat itself. And few men can claim as large a role in the loss of national will that led to that defeat as John Kerry. A brave man in Vietnam, he returned home to appear before Congress and not merely denounce the war but damn his “band of brothers” as a gang of rapists, torturers and murderers led by officers happy to license them to commit war crimes with impunity. He spent the Seventies playing Jane Fonda and he now wants to run as John Wayne.
The Democrats have always been more concerned with who someone is rather than what they think – appearances do matter, but Kerry’s war service does not, nor should it, insulate him from criticism for years of weakening the US military. Kerry voted against nearly every weapons system that won the wars in Bosnia, Afghanistan, and Iraq. He voted against the first Gulf War, an act that shows a fundamental weakness on defense issues. His record belies his supposed strength on defense.
I’m waiting for an ad that simply puts the matter plainly: who do you think Al Qaeda wants to win the election? Who do you think will make Syria relax? Who do you think Hezbollah worries about more? Who would Iran want to deal with when it comes to its nuclear program – Cowboy Bush or “Send in the bribed French inspectors” Kerry? Which candidate would our enemies prefer?
O the shrieking that would result should such an ad run. You can’t even ask those questions, even though they’re the most relevant questions of the election.
Of course, Hizb’Allah has already given us the answer to that question:
“The resistance movement [against the U.S. in Iraq] may not be able to remove the U.S. from Iraq within a year, but it will be able to remove Bush, [Defense Secretary Donald] Rumsfeld and [National Security Adviser] Condoleezza Rice, together with their Zionist friends, from the White House,” Nasrallah assured his listeners. Nasrallah’s scenario requires no deep understanding: Suicide attacks and sabotage operations against the American forces in Iraq will cause American public opinion to turn against the president and not re-elect him, thus bringing about the disappearance of this group of leaders from the White House.
Of course the Democrats aren’t working for Hizb’Allah, and I don’t mean to accuse the Democrats of being “fifth columnists” as some would. However, this does show that removing the Bush Administration would end the war on terror and give our enemies the kind of space and time they need to reconstitute and become an even greater threat.
John Kerry’s anti-war beliefs hurt US soldiers and millions of people in Southeast Asia in the 1970s when his actions helped embolden the Viet Cong. Today Kerry’s stance on the war emboldens the insurgents in Iraq to kill more US soldiers and Iraq civilians in the hopes that the Kerry Administration will not have the political will to continue the war. Such an accusation is not criticizing Kerry’s patriotism, it is criticizing his judgement. As it was 30 years ago, Kerry’s bad judgement serves to harm our soldiers abroad.