The John Kerry of Iraq

  • #1
Ivan Seeking
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The 372nd’s abuse of prisoners seemed almost routine—a fact of Army life that the soldiers felt no need to hide. On April 9th, at an Article 32 hearing (the military equivalent of a grand jury) in the case against Sergeant Frederick, at Camp Victory, near Baghdad, one of the witnesses, Specialist Matthew Wisdom, an M.P., told the courtroom what happened when he and other soldiers delivered seven prisoners, hooded and bound, to the so-called “hard site” at Abu Ghraib—seven tiers of cells where the inmates who were considered the most dangerous were housed. The men had been accused of starting a riot in another section of the prison. Wisdom said:[continued]
http://www.newyorker.com/fact/content/?040510fa_fact [Broken]

Matthew Wisdom; Hero or villain? A man of conscience who spoke the truth?
 
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Answers and Replies

  • #2
nrtemple
I think I am in a unique position to answer that question...Matthew Wisdom is my son. Here's a quote for you "All that has to happen for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing". I could not be more proud of my son, he went through the proper chain of command and he told the truth. He faced tremendous pressure to conform, being the newest and youngest member of the 372 MP Company. He witnessed the events at Abu Graib and was invited by some of the accused to participate and he declined in disgust. He asked to be reassigned away from the "hard site" so that he would not be involved in what was obviously improper. This was the extent of his involvement until the investigation began after Darby gave the photos to CID. After that, Matthew testified as required by the Military Code of Conduct and Military Law. He is a hero without a doubt.
 
  • #3
Ivan Seeking
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nrtemple said:
I think I am in a unique position to answer that question...Matthew Wisdom is my son. Here's a quote for you "All that has to happen for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing".
Welcome to PF and thanks so much for posting. And I couldn't agree more.

Please tell Matthew thank you.
 
  • #4
russ_watters
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I agree that he's a hero, but it is disrespectful to him to compare him to Kerry. Spec. Wisdom actually saw what he testified about and he reported it immediatly - Kerry vouched for second-hand accounts of fabricated stories, after the fact. That's cowardace. And he's lucky that what he had to say is what people wanted to hear, otherwise he could have been charged with purjery or even treason.
 
  • #5
Ivan Seeking
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Thanks for the Fox News version.
 
  • #6
Art
Well done Mathew Wisdom. It takes real guts to go against the herd.
 
  • #7
Ivan Seeking said:
Thanks for the Fox News version.
:rofl: Kerry lost good friends in the war, so I believe his disappointments with the war were sincere. Was his testimony to congress also to get his name known to further his political career? Probably. However words like perjury or treason--that's Fox News spin for sure.
 
  • #8
russ_watters
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Treason and perjury are my opinion for sure - but the facts in the 2nd sentence are facts. Whatever you want to call it, they did two very different things.
 
  • #9
Art
Can somebody remind me what was G Bush jr's and D Cheney's war record like in Vietnam?
 
  • #10
russ_watters said:
Treason and perjury are my opinion for sure - but the facts in the 2nd sentence are facts. Whatever you want to call it, they did two very different things.
If I understand what you are referring to, I agree with the first half, but not with the word fabricated. Nor cowardice. Once again, opinion not fact.
 
  • #11
Pengwuino
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Art said:
Can somebody remind me what was G Bush jr's and D Cheney's war record like in Vietnam?
The President served in the National Guard and piloted an F111 interceptor jet i believe for about 5 or 6 years. There was a huge controversy over this although most of the attacks on his military career have not been backed up by factual data.

According to what i foudn on google, no one cares about cheney's record lol. Someone mentions he is a war vet... but absolutely nothing beyond that... so who knows if he even has a war record.
 
  • #12
Pengwuino
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Ivan Seeking said:
Thanks for the Fox News version.
I guess Fox News is the only news station familiar with military law or the Constitution :rolleyes:
 
  • #13
SOS2008
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Pengwuino said:
The President served in the National Guard and piloted an F111 interceptor jet i believe for about 5 or 6 years. There was a huge controversy over this although most of the attacks on his military career have not been backed up by factual data.
This has been discussed before, whether serving in the National Guard can be compared to seeing action in Vietnam as Kerry did (because many see the Guard as a way to avoid serving in the military proper). And just because you are in denial about the matter does not mean Bush's failure to complete full service in the Guard has not been backed up by factual data. I’ve posted on this before with information found by the Boston Globe (which I'd be happy to provide again upon request), however since some members may not approve of that source, here is another more acceptable source:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_W._Bush_military_service_controversy

Bush's payroll records show that he was paid for only 40 drill periods in the 1972-73 fiscal year (he missed, and did not make up, May and June) and for only 36 for the 1973-74 fiscal year (he missed, and did not make up, July, August, and September). In addition, his payroll records show only 9 days of Annual Active Duty Training in fiscal year 1972-73, all in May (1-3, 8-10, and 22-24).
George W. Bush Service Record Graph:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Reserves2a.gif

Pengwuino said:
According to what i foudn on google, no one cares about cheney's record lol. Someone mentions he is a war vet... but absolutely nothing beyond that... so who knows if he even has a war record.
I couldn't find anything at all about Cheney having a military record. If he does, and the information is not readily available, I'd say it's rather suspicious. Since it sounds like he may be reconsidering a run for presidency in 2008 (good Lord :yuck: ), we best be getting on it, huh?
Pengwuino said:
I guess Fox News is the only news station familiar with military law or the Constitution :rolleyes:
Just because FOX is essentially state sponsored news?
 
  • #14
russ_watters
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2CentsWorth said:
If I understand what you are referring to, I agree with the first half, but not with the word fabricated.
Fabricated, as in lies: http://www.newsmax.com/archives/articles/2004/10/19/203211.shtml
“John Kerry knew that the Winter Soldier testimony was a pack of lies. I know, because I was there, and I told some of those lies.”
This is something a lot of liberals failed to understand about the impact of Kerry's "Reporting for duty" tactic: the SBV may have gotten all the press, but Kerry's "Winter Soldier" testimony is what was really awful.

edit: Regarding "cowardace", that's also my opinion, but again there is a fact behind it: the fact that Kerry reported these things after he left Vietnam. If he witnessed anything, it was his responsibility to report it immediately.
 
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  • #15
Art
russ_watters said:
Fabricated, as in lies: http://www.newsmax.com/archives/articles/2004/10/19/203211.shtml This is something a lot of liberals failed to understand about the impact of Kerry's "Reporting for duty" tactic: the SBV may have gotten all the press, but Kerry's "Winter Soldier" testimony is what was really awful.
First Hollywood rewrote the outcome of the Vietnam war and now some people are trying to rewrite the history of the way the war was conducted. What's next? The war in Vietnam started because the N Vietnamese invaded Texas? Funny I thought it was supposed to be the 'victor who gets to write history' obviously there are exceptions to this maxim.
Do you remember the huge outcry in recent years particularly from America when Germany started to drop references to the holocaust in it's schools' history courses and more recently when Japan began to downplay it's wartime atrocities. I'm sure Russ you will find some pre-programmed rightwing republican rebuttals to this line of reasoning no doubt justifying why America's rewrite of history is 'different' and 'special' but I doubt many people will fall for this type of blatant propaganda rubbish apart from those brought up on a diet of cowboy and indian films, where the good guys always wore the white hats. For them it reinforces their already simplistic, blinkered view of America's role in world affairs.
 
  • #16
Art
I dug up this about Cheney. Hardly a position of strength from which to criticise Kerry

"Cheney Had "Other Priorities" During Vietnam War

Cheney Had "Other Priorities" During Vietnam War. Vice President Dick Cheney received five deferments during the Vietnam War from 1963 to 1966, a period of heightened American commitment in Vietnam. He later dismissed questions about his failure to serve by simply saying, "I had other priorities in the '60s." [McGrory, Washington Post, 7/27/00; Geyer, Chicago Tribune, 2/6/04; Arizona Republic, 1/22/04]

Cheney and Bush Campaign Distort Record of Cheney's Deferments. The Washington Post reported in 1991 that Cheney received five deferments, four 2-S student deferments and one under the 3-A classification -- "registrant with a child or children; or registrant deferred by reason of extreme hardship to dependents." In his Senate confirmation hearing, Cheney said he "would have obviously been happy to serve had I been called," which contradicting his earlier statement, "I had other priorities in the '60s than military service." Bush staff members said Cheney received only three deferments, two for school and one for being a new father. [Washington Post, 4/3/91; Des Moines Register, 8/2/00]"
 
  • #17
russ_watters
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Art, you didn't mention John Kerry in either of those posts. :confused:
 
  • #18
Art
russ_watters said:
Art, you didn't mention John Kerry in either of those posts. :confused:
Have another look Russ. Where you see Kerry, both in the quote to which I was replying in the first post and in the first line of my second post you can assume that it is John Kerry who is being referred to. (equally :confused: )
 
  • #19
russ_watters
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Art said:
Have another look Russ. Where you see Kerry, both in the quote to which I was replying in the first post and in the first line of my second post you can assume that it is John Kerry who is being referred to. (equally :confused: )
Lemme rephrase: nothing you wrote in either post is about John Kerry. Are you just trying to change the subject, or what?
 
  • #20
Art
russ_watters said:
Lemme rephrase: nothing you wrote in either post is about John Kerry. Are you just trying to change the subject, or what?
I see, "well say what you mean and mean what you say" as the Cheshire cat said to Alice in Wonderland.

It's a sort of word association thing, the thread was originally about Matthew Wisdom, next it was Kerry, then you mentioned cowardice and I immediately thought of Bush jr and his sidekick for some reason.

Russ, any ideas about what the pressing engagements were that caused Cheney to miss the war?
 
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  • #21
russ_watters said:
Fabricated, as in lies: http://www.newsmax.com/archives/articles/2004/10/19/203211.shtml This is something a lot of liberals failed to understand about the impact of Kerry's "Reporting for duty" tactic: the SBV may have gotten all the press, but Kerry's "Winter Soldier" testimony is what was really awful.

edit: Regarding "cowardace", that's also my opinion, but again there is a fact behind it: the fact that Kerry reported these things after he left Vietnam. If he witnessed anything, it was his responsibility to report it immediately.
I thought your reference to fabrication was in regard to Kerry's testimony to congress. As stated, I personally feel Kerry was truly disenchanted with the war by the time he came home--as were many soldiers.

Back to the OP and reporting something immediately, I agree this is good and courageous. Normal avenues are not always available (e.g., Felt & Watergate), and certainly as noted in another post, this can be difficult in the military. Also I understand this was even more the case during Vietnam.

As for Kerry's service in Vietnam, the majority consensus is he was and is not a coward. So I think it remains a point of view, not fact. Isn't newsmax one of the sites that started the rumor about impeachment of Bush?
 
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  • #22
Informal Logic
russ_watters said:
Lemme rephrase: nothing you wrote in either post is about John Kerry. Are you just trying to change the subject, or what?
Distraction is a Republican tactic. :rolleyes:
 
  • #23
Pengwuino said:
The President served in the National Guard and piloted an F111 interceptor jet i believe for about 5 or 6 years. There was a huge controversy over this although most of the attacks on his military career have not been backed up by factual data.

According to what i foudn on google, no one cares about cheney's record lol. Someone mentions he is a war vet... but absolutely nothing beyond that... so who knows if he even has a war record.
I once read a article in which a member of the ANG stated that when Bush was enlisted as a pilot, it was seen as very unusual. It was unusual because back then being a guard pilot was seen as THE job to have; a job that you had to pay your dues for. Normally, after serving active duty, a pilot would transfer to the Guard to finish out his term. So to go through pilot training while in the Guard was unheard of, at least according to this source.
 
  • #24
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russ_watters said:
Fabricated, as in lies: http://www.newsmax.com/archives/articles/2004/10/19/203211.shtml This is something a lot of liberals failed to understand about the impact of Kerry's "Reporting for duty" tactic: the SBV may have gotten all the press, but Kerry's "Winter Soldier" testimony is what was really awful.

edit: Regarding "cowardace", that's also my opinion, but again there is a fact behind it: the fact that Kerry reported these things after he left Vietnam. If he witnessed anything, it was his responsibility to report it immediately.
Russ, I thought you were more adroit at doing research than this. You quoted a NewsMax article as some sort of proof. Hmmmm wasn't there a thread a few days back about Kerry proposing impeachment? Wasn't that story propogated through a handfull of fringe news sources such as NewsMax and Al Jazeera?

Now, the article you posted would appear to be significant, so why is it NewsMax is the only source for it? I mean even the Brittish memo had a blurb, when it first appeared, in most major news sources.

Additionally, scroll halfway down your little propoganda source so you can get your copy of Stolen Honor. A real news source would not, I repeat NOT, lower themselves by including propoganda in an real news article.

Com'on Lt you could do better than that.

Let's see some credible sources to back your claim.
 
  • #25
russ_watters
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2CentsWorth said:
I thought your reference to fabrication was in regard to Kerry's testimony to congress.
It was. What I meant by the miscalculation thing was that Kerry didn't realize how much people would care about those 30 year old lies.
As stated, I personally feel Kerry was truly disenchanted with the war by the time he came home--as were many soldiers.
Oh, I absolutely agree - in fact, that's trivially obvious: he wouldn't have gone before Congress to say it or joined with anti-war groups if he wasn't disenchanted. But that's not an excuse for lying to Congress.
faust said:
Russ, I thought you were more adroit at doing research than this. You quoted a NewsMax article as some sort of proof. Hmmmm wasn't there a thread a few days back about Kerry proposing impeachment? Wasn't that story propogated through a handfull of fringe news sources such as NewsMax and Al Jazeera?
Sorry, faust, that was just the first site I could find with direct quotes in it. If you think those direct quotes are not actually direct quotes, fine, but otherwise this link is vastly different in content from the one about John Kerry pushing for impeachment.
Now, the article you posted would appear to be significant, so why is it NewsMax is the only source for it?
You probably already know the answer to that question.
Additionally, scroll halfway down your little propoganda source so you can get your copy of Stolen Honor. A real news source would not, I repeat NOT, lower themselves by including propoganda in an real news article.
Propaganda? I don't see it, could you be more specific? The guy who all those quotes are from is selling a book (the way I understand it, most of the quotes are from that book) - you object to the fact that the guy is selling a book?

Also - I'm assuming you guys have heard or read John Kerry's testimony before Congress. Have you? edit: link added below.

HERE is the text of Kerry's testimony.
I am not here as John Kerry. I am here as one member of the group of 1,000 which is a small representation of a very much larger group of veterans in this country, and were it possible for all of them to sit at this table they would be here and have the same kind of testimony....

I would like to talk, representing all those veterans, and say that several months ago in Detroit, we had an investigation at which over 150 honorably discharged and many very highly decorated veterans testified to war crimes committed in Southeast Asia, not isolated incidents but crimes committed on a day-to-day basis with the full awareness of officers at all levels of command....

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.
The previous link was direct quotes from one of these "Winter Soldiers" saying he was pressured/coerced into making such statements. Other "Winter Soldiers" were also later found to be frauds. A lie is a lie - even if its a second-hand lie. Kerry is responsible for it because he put himeslf in the position to be responsible for it. Also, my objection goes beyond just the lies - its also about the motivation and modus operandi. My use of the word "treason" is a reference to his association with Jane Fonda, for example. Why she was never arrested for what she did is beyond me. To Kerry's credit, he did eventually realize what they were about and separate himself from her group, but being naive or being used as a pawn doesn't undo the damage Kerry did.

In any case, we're getting further into the specifics than we need to: the main point I want people to acknowledge here is that the actions of these two men are different from each other - different enough that they should not be compared.
 
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