Former Mates Allege Kerry ‘Unfit’ II

John O’Neill has delivered the promised “Kerry is unfit” argument, which is the WSJ op-ed page’s Featured Article today. As expected, it has nothing to do with Kerry’s service in Vietnam and everything to do with his anti-war protests afterward.

Like John Kerry, I served in Vietnam as a Swift Boat commander. Ironically, John Kerry and I served much of our time, a full 12 months in my case and a controversial four months in his, commanding the exact same six-man boat, PCF-94, which I took over after he requested early departure. Despite our shared experience, I still believe what I believed 33 years ago–that John Kerry slandered America’s military by inventing or repeating grossly exaggerated claims of atrocities and war crimes in order to advance his own political career as an antiwar activist. His misrepresentations played a significant role in creating the negative and false image of Vietnam vets that has persisted for over three decades.

Again, while I think this is a fair point, it’s not a startling revelation by any means.

So far, I’ve been unable to find the promised letter by the so-called “Swift Boat Veterans for Truth” or coverage of their press conference, which is/was to have been some time today.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Check … the letter is posted there and on CNS. Strong stuff. Best, Terry

  2. Tom S. says: is the URL for the main page.

    Just finished watching the re-run of the C-SPAN coverage of today’s press conference athe the National Press Club. I don’t think there was any real new info/smoking gun.

    O’Neill said that the group was going to send speakers all over to make their case. All of them determined, many articulate. I don’t think the “paid Republican attack machine” spin is going to work with these guys. IF they get the coverage.

    One priceless Beltway moment: One reporter (from CBS?) asked why they chose to hold this announcement today, when Kerry was kicking off his major ad campaign. O’Neill replied, “I don’t think most of us knew about the ad campaign. We just did it as soon as we could”. Different priorities than the press corps, I guess.

    rgds, Tom