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August 13, 2004
TOM MAGUIRE LOOKS AT KERRY'S SHIFTING CLAIMS ON CAMBODIA and notes that this is a pattern we've seen before from Kerry, with regard to the stories on Vietnam Vets Against the War, and Kerry's shifting dates of military service. Noting that ABC's The Note called the campaign's explanations of Kerry's behavior "squirrelly and unsettling," Maguire observes:
Like the rest of us, this campaign is on a voyage of discovery into John Kerry's past. And like the rest of us, they are repeatedly learning that their candidate's memory of his Vietnam era is conveniently unreliable. . . . The recurring theme - what Kerry remembers isn't always what is true, but it is self-serving.
Luckily, the media doesn't seem to want to make much of these problems.
UPDATE: But at the Washington Post, it's the readers who are doing the reporting:
The Aug. 12 editorial did not mention one charge that gives credence to the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth: that Sen. John F. Kerry lied when he repeatedly stated that he was on a mission in Cambodia on Christmas Day, 1968. In a floor speech in the Senate on March 17, 1986, Mr. Kerry said the memory of being in Cambodia that day was "seared" in him.
Now that he has been challenged on that by his fellow officers, Mr. Kerry, through a spokesman, says his seared memory is now a "mistaken recollection" and he's not sure where he was that day. His fellow officers say that they and he were 50 miles away at Sa Dec on the Mekong River. Mr. Kerry has been proven to have spoken falsely about one major aspect of his service that he has used to score political points. Rather than pointing an accusatory finger at Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, The Post should give Mr. Kerry's record the thorough vetting Americans need before they decide this year's presidential contest.
It's democratic distributed journalism for the masses!
UPDATE: And the Post is outsourcing its corrections, too -- the author of the letter quoted above emails to note a typo: The Kerry speech was March 27, 1986, not March 17, 1986 as shown above. She's told the Post, too.