John Kerry is a deeply confused man when it comes to military service. In the current campaign, he can’t say more than two sentences without referencing his Vietnam service.
Many pundits are calling his service “honorable”. He did, after all, receive three Purple Hearts and other medals for his actions in combat. I don’t know if his service was honorable. For me to call it honorable, I have to believe was doing what he thought was honorable. Yet in 1971 he made a speech before Congress that the LA Times credits with convincing many Americans that the war was immoral. During the testimony he accused all levels of the military of committing the most horrible atrocities.
He now tries to claim is proud of both his service and his anti-war protests. Kerry believes the war was immoral. So how can he be proud of participating in a military action responsible for so many atrocities? He can’t have his cake and eat it too. He cannot have served honorably in a war he believed to be immoral.
Let’s call his service “brave” but not honorable. John Kerry is responsible for casting a poor light on his service by his protests following his combat experience.
Kerry emphasized his moral bankruptcy by equating service in the National Guard (and by extension all military reserves) to draft dodging. “I’ve said since the day I came back from Vietnam that it was not an issue to me if somebody chose to go to Canada or to go to jail or to be a conscientious objector or to serve in the National Guard or elsewhere.”
Thanks, Mr. Kerry. My time in the USMC reserves (after active duty) was just as honorable as deserting the military.