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August 27, 2004

Kerry Medals -- Plus A Point I Raised

Thomas Lipscomb raises the issue of Kerry's medals in a different way today, noting that there are some definite irregularities in the documentation. These are: 1) Silver Star with combat V -- the Navy does not issue them that way, but researcher B.G. Burkett notes that veteran-impostors often have paperwork claiming that they received such an award.
"I've run across several claims for Silver Stars with combat V's, but they were all in fake records," he said.

2) Three defend citations for the Silver Star -- each issued by a different authority, with a different description of the events.

Maj. Anthony Milavic, a retired Marine Vietnam veteran, calls the issuance of three citations for the same medal "bizarre." Milavic hosts Milinet, an Internet forum popular with the military community that is intended "to provide a forum in military/political affairs."

Normally in the case of a lost citation, Milavec points out, the awardee simply asked for a copy to be sent to him from his service personnel records office where it remains on file. "I have never heard of multi-citations from three different people for the same medal award," he said. Nor has Burkett: "It is even stranger to have three different descriptions of the awardee's conduct in the citations for the same award."

2) Two different certificates for his Bronze Star -- again, with different narratives and issued by different authorities.

So far, there are also two varying citations for Kerry's Bronze Star, one by Zumwalt and the other by Lehman as secretary of the Navy, both posted on johnkerry.com.

3) Kerry's DD215 authorizes four combat stars for his Vietnam Service Medal -- despite serving in only two of the eligible campaigns.

Kerry's Web site also carries a DD215 form revising his DD214, issued March 12, 2001, which adds four bronze campaign stars to his Vietnam service medal. The campaign stars are issued for participation in any of the 17 Department of Defense named campaigns that extended from 1962 to the cease-fire in 1973.

However, according to the Navy spokesman, Kerry should only have two campaign stars: one for "Counteroffensive, Phase VI," and one for "Tet69, Counteroffensive."

Lipscomb also points out another interesting anomaly, one that I have wondered about since I posted about Kerry's potential UCMJ problems on Monday. Did John Kerry complete his Naval Reserve obligation? Noting that the Washington Post's Michael Dobbs has discovered that only six of 100 pages from Kerry's personnel file have been released to the public, Lipscomb asks why Kerry was not discharged from the Naval Reserve until 1978, even though his obligation should have been up on June 30, 1972. George W. Bush completed his Air National Guard obligation on time and was honorably discharged, but Kerry's was delayed for SIX YEARS! Did KERRY make his drills, or was he AWOL? Was there some other issue? Given the scrutiny of Bush's service, doesn't Kerry deserve equal scrutiny? What is in those 94 pages?

The Burkett quote at the end of the article sums it up well.

"The multiple citations and variations in the official record are reason for suspicion in itself, even disregarding the current swift boat veterans' controversy."

UPDATE: The guys at QandO blogged on this same topic and point up this little gem from National Review, dealing to Adm. Boorda's suicide after discovering he had inappropriately been wearing an unauthorized combat V. Senator Kerry apparently gave a couple of interviews on the matter.

Veterans said yesterday that although they would take offense at someone falsely wearing a "V" combat pin, they couldn't see how this could drive Navy Adm. Jeremy Michael Boorda to suicide.

“Is it wrong? Yes, it is very wrong. Sufficient to question his leadership position? The answer is yes, which he clearly understood,” said Sen. John Kerry, a Navy combat veteran who served in Vietnam.

and

“The military is a rigorous culture that places a high premium on battlefield accomplishment,” said Sen. John F. Kerry, who received numerous decorations, including a Bronze Star with a "V" pin, as a Navy lieutenant in Vietnam.

“In a sense, there's nothing that says more about your career than when you fought, where you fought and how you fought,” Kerry said.

“If you wind up being less than what you’re pretending to be, there is a major confrontation with value and self-esteem and your sense of how others view you.”

Of Boorda and his apparent violation, Kerry said: “When you are the chief of them all, it has to weigh even more heavily.”

Since John Kerry wants to be the REAL chief of them all, we need full disclosure now!





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