11/01/2006 02:37 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Just WHO Insulted the Military

Listening to the dialogue about the dialogue, Kerry's remarks were clearly taken out of context even if his syntax were botched. Hardballer Chris Matthews, pretty much of a straightshooter, said that he read the entire speech, and said Kerry was clearly speaking about Bush, not the military. Moreover, he could not get a so-called Republican strategist to state that he, the strategist, thought that Kerry insulted the military.

That raises the question of whether there was an insult to the military, and, if so, who was the culprit. Since Kerry never said what they claimed, and one must assume he never has even thought it---after all, he knew his fellow soldiers and depended on one-another for their lives and limbs---it could be argued that what Bush (and Snow and others) accused John Kerry of saying is actually what they (Bush, Cheney, Limbaugh et al.) believe, and thus inserted their own beliefs into John Kerry's mangled syntax.

There is good evidence that this is indeed the psychology that has been inflicted upon us. A White House insider, a Mr. Kuo, who worked in the faith-based initiative office, wrote a book in which he detailed the slurs and ridicule that Bush Administration leveled at evangelical ministers behind their backs, and were just using them as political pawns. Pious platitudes in public coupled with secret scorn. Same pattern. It fits. And, this was from a friend of the White House who heard these comments being made.

The Bushes, and many of the neocons, follow a philosophy that holds that there is indeed an elite, and a deserving one at that. Recall Barbara Bush's statement after Katrina: "these people were underprivileged anyway, so this is working out well for them", is as revealing in its use of "these people" and "them" as in its callous content. Say what you will of George Bush's military record, one fact is incontrovertible: he decided, on his own, to ignore a military regulation for a physical because, he says, he decided he was unlikely to be flying in his new post (to which he probably never showed up). Only someone who believes he is indeed elite could contemplate choosing among the military regulations he would follow. There is no record that his decision was ever approved by his superior officer. Leading neocon William Kristol is alleged to be an adherent of the philosophy of Leo Strauss, who states explicitly that there should be an elite even in a democracy, who determine what is best for the masses, employing the "noble lie". Shadia Drury wrote that Strauss taught that "perpetual deception of the citizens by those in power is critical because they need to be led, and they need strong rulers to tell them what's good for them."

John McCain owes John Kerry a personal apology; how does a colleague/friend/fellow veteran like McCain say what he did, without at least calling his colleague and asking him, first, what he said, rather than swallowing the diatribe of the Rove-Mehlman minions? But it is the Administration, who orchestrated this cynical attack on Kerry, who owes that apology to the military, whom THEY insulted by reading in THEIR views into Kerry's statement.

As former Repubican House Majority Leader, Dick Armey essentially admitted on Hardball today, George Bush could not pass a lie detector test if asked whether he really thought Kerry said what Bush claimed he did. As if there were need for more proof of their deceptive practices, here's another one, same speech, for which the lie detector would be off the charts: "you don't create more terrorists when you are taking the fight to the terrorists". 16 US government agencies who contribute to the National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) just told him the opposite.

It is George Bush who insulted the military, not John Kerry. It is George Bush who continues to insult the intelligence, and take cynical advantage, of the general good will of the American people.

"It is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, a fascist dictatorship, a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of their leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country." [Hermann Goering].