[Note: This is a subpost linked to by Vietnam, Israel and the Left’s Delusional Narratives. Feel free to comment but the post might not make much sense without the parent post's context.]
Delusion: American soldiers were routinely committing wide-scale atrocities in the conduct of the war.
Reality: This delusion’s greatest champion was John Kerry (the 2004 Democrat Presidential nominee), who while testifying under oath before Congress in 1971 claimed:
I would like to talk, representing all those veterans, and say that several months ago in Detroit, we had an investigation at which over 150 honorably discharged and many very highly decorated veterans testified to war crimes committed in Southeast Asia, not isolated incidents but crimes committed on a day-to-day basis with the full awareness of officers at all levels of command….
They told the stories at times they had personally raped, cut off ears, cut off heads, taped wires from portable telephones to human genitals and turned up the power, cut off limbs, blown up bodies, randomly shot at civilians, razed villages in fashion reminiscent of Genghis Khan, shot cattle and dogs for fun, poisoned food stocks, and generally ravaged the countryside of South Vietnam in addition to the normal ravage of war, and the normal and very particular ravaging which is done by the applied bombing power of this country.
Twenty years prior in WWII, the majors, colonels and generals of Kerry’s “officers at all levels of command” had, as lieutenants and captains, liberated death camps in Europe and Asia. Those men knew better than any in the “peace” movement what atrocities looked like, and they defined themselves as being soldiers the polar opposite of the Nazis and Imperial Japanese who had actually committed such acts.
Yet the “peace” movement whipped themselves up into a delusional frenzy, to the point where they did not even question why or how such men had turned into monsters. Neither did they bother to present any real evidence of their allegations. Certainly, when they acquired overwhelming political power following Watergate, they did nothing to investigate or punish anyone for what they claimed must have been tens of thousands of war crimes.
Tellingly, John Kerry never pushed the point after the war “ended” and he accepted a pardon from Carter to protect himself from prosecution. At the time, Kerry had served naval officers and was a naval reserve officer when he testified. In his claims of atrocity he committed a crime one way or the other.
He either had no knowledge of war crimes, and therefore intentionally lied about the military for the benefit of the enemy, or he did have proof of war crimes but failed to bring such evidence forward as all American service personnel are legally required to do.
If it was the latter, he is guilty of even greater malice and cowardice than if it was the former. The only thing worse than making spurious accusations of war crimes would be letting actual war criminals go free and remain within the US military.