This news article is a little old by now, but I certainly missed it. I don't think it has gotten the attention it deserves-- possibly because it popped into the blogosphere weeks before the SwiftVets hits the scene. In any case, the information reported takes on new meaning in light of the swift boat controversy.
In early July, 2004, well before the Democrat Convention, the Telegraph published an article about the old Harvard Crimson article I referred to below (see my earlier Hedgehog post here). Apparently Charles Laurence, a Telegraph reporter, found Samuel Goldhaber, the 1970 Harvard student and Crimson writer who interviewed Kerry and wrote the original article. (Goldhaber is now a physician in Boston.) The Telegraph reports:
"I stand by my story," [Goldhaber] told The Telegraph. "It was a long time ago, and
I was 19 at the time, so it is hard to remember every detail. But I do know
this: at no point did Kerry contact either me or the Crimson to dispute anything
I had written."
Among other things, the Crimson story reports that Kerry "wrote to his local recruitment board seeking permission to spend a further 12 months studying in Paris, after completing his degree course at Yale University in the mid-1960s."
But the Kerry version of history is different, as the Telegraph notes:
According to the Democratic Party's version of Sen Kerry's military
history, he joined the Reserve Officer Training Corps at [Yale] through
eagerness to do his duty, and sailed with the Navy for combat as soon as he
graduated in 1966.
Hmmm. As the Telegraph writer observes:
The revelation appears to undercut Sen Kerry's carefully-cultivated image
as a man who willingly served his country in a dangerous war - in supposed
contrast to President Bush, who served in the Texas National Guard and thus
avoided being sent to Vietnam.
Indeed. Kerry, like many in that era, saw that he was going to be drafted-- so he enlisted, In the Navy. Where he could hope for a deep water assignment. Now, as I have said before, many others did the same thing. I was around during that time (I got a draft lottery number but I didn't turn 18 until 1972, and Nixon had all but stopped the draft by then.) I don't fault Kerry one bit for doing what he did. What I do fault him for is embellishing and embroidering his actions the way he has. That he has done so; that he also became an anti-war veteran (while still in the Naval Reserve) and exploited his service while slandering the others who served; that he lied repeatedly about Christmas in Cambodia; and that he now runs for president primarily as a war hero, have all made me deeply suspicious of his ability to serve as a successful president. I once thought that he was a good man and that the country would be fine if he were elected. (I would be gnashing my teeth, I thought, throughout his term, but the counrty would be fine.) I no longer think so.
I wonder why we are not seeing or hearing more about this on Fox, Hugh Hewitt (the man who inspired this blog), Laura Ingraham, Michael Medved, and elsewhere? Or have I just not been paying attention? I doubt that. I think it's just a combination of the timing of the news cycle and the flurry of news about the SwiftVets' charges. This got lost in the shuffle. It's time to shine the spotlight on it again.