Old Crimson Interview Reveals A More Radical John Kerry
The Crimson reported Kerry called for U.N. control of troops in 1970
The Bush administration will be using much of this thirty-four-year old interview to try to attack Kerry, I'd imagine. In a "No-Sh*t-Dick Tracy" way, let's remember that "34 years later, Kerry's remarks on American military and intelligence operations vastly diverge from opinions expressed by the present-day Sen. John F. Kerry, D.-Mass......." PLEASE. Kerry SHOULD NOT be beholden to everything in that old interview...not by any means. I just heard David Brooks defending President Bush on the Lehrer News Hour, claiming that the Bush AWOL issue is moot because we already know all we need to know about his character after these four years. (I'll say we do--oye). Brooks' point was that a person changes a lot after 30 years...sometimes you'd think they were an entirely different person altogether. After Kerry's experience in Viet Nam, it's no wonder he felt the way he felt at the time! If Adam Clymer of the National Annenberg Election Survey thinks the interview should make its way to be used by the Bush campaign, I hope it totally backfires on them...and I think it will.
Let them open the old Viet Nam wounds and get this country talking about it all over again. It might actually be the best thing thing to revive the civic spirit of the late 60s. Young people "on the political fence" might just begin to understand the parellels between the Tonkin Gulf lies and WMD lies.
You know, I recall a certain Republican leader...a general, as a matter of fact, who solidly and unmistakably warned all of us Americans about the miltary -industrial complex.
"Until the latest of our world conflicts, the United States had no armaments industry. American makers of plowshares could, with time and as required, make swords as well. But now we can no longer risk emergency improvisation of national defense; we have been compelled to create a permanent armaments industry of vast proportions. Added to this, three and a half million men and women are directly engaged in the defense establishment. We annually spend on military security more than the net income of all United States corporations.How soon Republicans have forgotten. Bush has been a puppet to a good many at the Pentagon who knew the Bush nose was easy for the leading. The People of this nation have lost so much power in the last four years that I don't honestly know if we shall recover from it.
This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence -- economic, political, even spiritual -- is felt in every city, every State house, every office of the Federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources and livelihood are all involved; so is the very structure of our society.
In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the militaryindustrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.
We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together."
--President Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1961
It's no surprise that the Bush campaign would highlight Kerry's Senate votes should he win the Democratic nomination, as Kevin Madden from Bush's campaign avers. He's got a long list of them. It was one of my many reasons Kerry was one of my lesser favorites (among the many other reasons I've stated on this blog over the past year).
I think Kerry will withstand it all, should he become the Democratic nominee. Why? He is not Bush. Period. He is a leader with a mind for leading..even if I have not agreed with the intuition lying behind many of his recent decisions.
This is what I know: Bush is a puppet with an imagined mission from God propped by those I believe he trusts...and who lead him by the nose. I don't want a leader like this. I want a real leader..not a leader by sheer team influence.