Someone in the press has now actually asked Kerry about his 1971 congressional testimony. Kerry told a Knight Ridder reporter [sorry, no link] that he relied on the Winter Soldier Investigation “because some of it was highly documented and very disturbing. I did in my heart what I thought was correct to help people understand what was going on. I’ve always honored the service of people over there. I never insinuated that everybody fell into one pot. I was looking forward to telling the truth about some of the things that were happening.”
This is a thoroughly dishonest statement. Let’s take it sentence by sentence. 1) The Winter Soldier testimony was not “highly documented,” but—as Mack Owens has reported for NR and NRO—totally unsubstantiated and unbelievable at the time. 2) Kerry didn’t “help people understand what was going on,” but rather helped publicize lies. 3) Kerry didn’t “honor” the service of vets, but said “we are ashamed of . . . what we are called on to do in Southeast Asia,” and maintained that in the vets America “has created a monster, a monster in the form of millions of men who have been taught to deal and to trade in violence.” 4) Kerry did insinuate that the atrocities were widespread, noting that they were “not isolated incidents, but crimes committed on a day-to-day basis with the full awareness of officers at all levels of command.” These crimes tainted the nation. According to Kerry, “the crimes threaten it, not Reds,” as “America lose[s] her sense of morality.” 5) Finally, if Kerry wanted to tell the truth, he shouldn’t have traded in falsehoods.