I mean look at what kind of miraculous results Kerry achieved after summiting with the Vietkong in France. John Kerry effectively ended the Vietnam War. How's that for the power of his diplomacy?
I am struck by how much Kerry's position, at least as of today, reflects that of years gone by. Certainly Vietnam was the wrong war, in the wrong place, at the wrong time, right?
Kerry's suggestion before the Senate committee that there be an immediate pullout led to questions about whether such a move would endanger the lives of South Vietnamese allies.
Kerry responded that "this obviously is the most difficult question of all, but I think that at this point the United States is not really in a position to consider the happiness of those people as pertains to the army in our withdrawal." If the United States did not withdraw, Kerry said, then US bombing would continue, and "the war will continue. So what I am saying is that yes, there will be some recrimination but far, far less than the 200,000 a year who are murdered by the United States of America..."
Asked to explain this Kerry's spokesman did what they always have to do, 'say it aint so'.
"...Senator Kerry was testifying against a failed policy, which resulted in the killing of hundreds of thousands of people. That policy resulted in one of the highest civilian casualty rate in the history of war. In answering Senator [George D.] Aiken's question about the consequences of an American withdrawal and potential additional bloodbath, Senator Kerry used a word he deems inappropriate.
"Senator Kerry never suggested or believed and absolutely rejects the idea that the word applied to service of the American soldiers in Vietnam. While opposed to the failed policy, Senator Kerry insisted that Americans must never confuse the war with the warriors." boston.com
This, in a nutshell, is precisely what John Kerry did all through this debate. It is what Kerry has been doing this entire campaign. Kerry makes statements that he later completely contradicts. Then we are told he never said it or didn't mean it.
When the message isn't working, change the message. It is evident that if Kerry thought the circumstances demanded it he would take any position.
Which makes the criticism of the President all that more intrigueing, it actually highlights Kerry's overwillingness to switch paths, change course, and argue against what he supported previously. On August 9th Kerry said that he, "would have voted to authorize the war in Iraq even if he had known then that U.S. and allied forces would not find weapons of mass destruction."
Tonight he said the opposite.
KERRY: What I think troubles a lot of people in our country is that the president has just sort of described one kind of mistake. But what he has said is that, even knowing there were no weapons of mass destruction, even knowing there was no imminent threat, even knowing there was no connection with al Qaeda, he would still have done everything the same way. Those are his words.
KERRY: Now, I would not. So what I'm trying to do is just talk the truth to the American people and to the world. The truth is what good policy is based on. It's what leadership is based on.
Supporters will no doubt shrug and move on, or explain this away as taken out of context. But a common reading of both statements is that these statements are at odds.
At home with contradiction: that's what Kerry is comfortable with. Kind of like the obfuscation Kerry attempts in first saying he would, "never give any country a veto over our security." Then later on saying that in order to override just such a veto that it must pass a 'global' test.
As I listened to this debate I think I can sum up Kerry's schizophrenic policy, "The war is wrong, and I will win it." I heard George W. Bush say, "This is my war and we will win it."