I received more than a few comments about this post when it appeared a number of months ago. The major piece of legislation co-authored by the good Senator has been in the news and making major waves throughout the blogsphere over the past few weeks. Perhaps it is as good a time as any to take a walk down memory lane…The main point of my post still stands. Senator McCain in all good conscience needs to step down from his senate seat and retire. I have the greatest respect for the senators Naval service, and for his time spent as a POW. But, I posit his time in hell, has at the very least affected his powers of reasoning. It’s not his fault, and it may not be fair (as things in life often are) but his actions as a Senator, and the legislation he has backed or sponsored, as well as his actions as a member of the Senate fact finding committee on the issue of POWs/MIAs are questionable at best.
Anyhow, here is the old post.
With all the war of words about the Swift Boat Vets for Truth and their ad depicting Kerry in a less than favorable light (Truth hurts don’t it Kerry). Aside from the whining and pseudo legal garbage put out by the DNC (and others for the Kerry Konvoy), one voice spoke out, which judging by his past actions isn’t too surprising at first look.
Yes, I am talking about Arizona’s own Senator John McCain.
There has been talk over the years about his checkered political past (Keating Five ring a bell?), including the election ads cure-all (that didn’t)which
bitch-slapsignores that pesky first amendment, the CFR. But, his statements concerning the ad placed by the Swifties, is not really about his being a “maverick”, or even being an independent thinker…..it goes deeper.
As most folks know Senator McCain was a POW during Viet Nam. There have been other sites and other comments, over the years, suggesting he got the majority of his wounds by not following procedure upon ejecting from his aircraft over the middle of Hanoi. I would humbly suggest until you have done the same, you might want to pipe down about that….ejecting from an aircraft even in optimal conditions is not failsafe….and though I have concerns about the Senator, that isn’t one of them.
He landed in the middle of ” the Western Lake” and was removed from it by one Vietnamese. Thus started his 5 1/2 year stint as a prisoner of war.
And, on his fourth day of captivity and believing he was going to die, McCain chose instead to deal with his captors. I said, “O.K., I’ll give you military information if you will take me to the hospital.”. Even this almost failed to work, until the Vietnamese realized he was the son of a senior Naval Officer. Now, only those who have been in that part of hell experienced by POW’s of Viet Nam, would have any honest insight to what McCain was exposed to….the rest of us can imagine…based on what we have read or heard from other POW’s. Is he a turncoat to his fellows based on his own admissions in so far as he claims to have freely violated the Code of Conduct all service members are bound to? I don’t want to address that concern…indeed it is not as important as another question I do have.
Was Senator McCain broken so hard that he can never exorcise the demons his actions past and present would indicate he still faces? If he were just a small town mayor, or a little bureaucrat in a dimly lit office, that may not be much of a concern…certainly others have matters of self worth and conscience they must face constantly…But how many are US Senators….and past (and possible future) contenders for the highest office in the land?
Fact: McCain actively sought to dismiss and marginalize attempts of finding out whether there were American POWs/MIAs still alive in Viet Nam and possibly neighboring countries
Fact: After keeping his distance from Massachusetts Senator John Kerry for a number of years, obstinately due to Kerry’s well documented anti-war stance, He has been alleged to have “Made his peace” with Kerry while on a trip to Kuwait.
Fact: The very enemy which caused him physical and mental damage, became the beneficiary of his actions in bringing about more open trade as one of a number of US Senators seeking to help open relations with Viet Nam.
Fact: When fellow vets attempt to present their side of the ongoing saga that is the Kerry attempt to rewrite (Kerry’s) history of the Viet Nam war, he summarily dismisses them and calls upon the Bush administration to do the same.
The bottom line is there is more to Senator McCain then meets the eye. Based on what has appeared in print (US News and World Report, Congressional Record[s], McCain’s own statements, “The Nightingale”, etc) he is a man who seeks to put Viet Nam well behind him….even if the costs are far greater than just the personal well being and mental health of one Senator John McCain.
It is one thing to allow Kerry to dodge and weave as he puts on his “Visions of Viet Nam Heroics Pornshow ™” and attack those without credentials or affidavit’s to back up their accusations. But the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth are NOT in that group Senator McCain. They have the poof, they have been there, been wounded, and seen their comrades in arms die there.
You have talked about courage. You have talked about falling short of what you would consider to be honorable conduct. You have the chance here to do what would be considered to be the honorable thing, in really listening to what the Swift Boat vets have to say. And, in doing all of what is in your power to ensure the current Commander in Chief is returned to office for another four years. We are at war Senator, and though he is not perfect, President Bush has the clarity of vision to recognize the evil we are fighting for what it is. Perhaps, in finding the courage within yourself to drop the blinders and see the truth, you will be able to eliminate some of the demons who dine on your soul daily.