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Not So Swift: Libs use U.S. military as a pejorative

by: daniel clark | published: 06 16, 2014

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swift boat (n): a small American military vessel used to navigate narrow, interior waterways

swift-boat (vb): to expose the disloyalty of a soldier, esp. when done by a large number of that soldier’s far more loyal, honorable and trustworthy peers

While explaining how the Obama administration could be surprised by criticisms of its prisoner exchange with the Taliban, NBC White House correspondent Chuck Todd reported, “a few aides describe it to me as, ‘we didn’t know that they were going to swiftboat [Bowe] Bergdahl.’” The “they” in this case are Bergdahl’s fellow soldiers who outed him as a deserter. These aides probably didn’t anticipate the ensuing outrage because they do not find desertion to be an objectionable thing.

To understand how that can be, you have to think like a liberal, which means eyeing American soldiers with either suspicion or pity. Because liberals see American military force as immoral, they perceive our soldiers either as willing participants in the immorality, or else as hapless victims of unrelenting coercion.

From that premise, they conclude that disloyal soldiers are the superior ones, having been driven to rise above their condition by their disillusionment with the sinister American “war machine.” If you doubt this, just try finding unsympathetic portrayals of deserters, draft-dodgers and traitors in liberal pop culture, from the Vietnam era right up until now.

Then again, who needs Hollywood when you’ve got real life? Remember how the media gushed over the “deeply thoughtful” and “courageous” letter that a 23-year-old Bill Clinton had written to Col. Eugene Holmes, a Bataan Death March survivor, in 1969. In it, the future president flippantly professed to “loathe the military” before obliviously adding, “Merry Christmas.” Clinton, who had already been drafted, had subsequently received an unprecedented deferment in exchange for his promise to join the ROTC upon returning from Oxford. The letter was to inform Col. Holmes that he was welshing on the deal.

During the 2004 campaign, liberals treated John Kerry like he was the greatest – if not the only – military hero in America, and no wonder. It was Kerry and his malicious band of impostors from Vietnam Veterans Against the War who had conducted the “Winter Soldier Investigation,” during which they reinforced every liberal prejudice against the American military.

Kerry had been a naval officer aboard a swift boat. When he ran for president, many of those who had served with him formed a group called Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, to educate the public about his anti-American activities. In reaction to this effort, the Democrats and their friends in the media coined the term “swiftboating,” which they take to mean the act of dishonestly attacking one of their heroes.

In reality, the accusations leveled by the Swift Boat Vets were infinitely more accurate than those that had been fabricated by Kerry and his VVAW, who slandered the entire U.S. military with a litany of fictitious atrocities, which Kerry himself recounted before the Senate in 1971. Telling scurrilous lies about American heroes isn’t an example of “swiftboating,” though. Telling the truth about a turncoat is.

It’s instructive that liberals so comfortably describe “swiftboaters,” i.e., American sailors, as the enemy. If anyone else were to choose a military vehicle to use as a symbol of treachery, he would pick one from the other side. An American non-liberal might refer to perpetrators of an unjust attack as “kamikazes” or “Scud launchers,” but he would never complain that he’d been “Sherman tanked” or “A-10 Warthogged.”

Only a liberal would consider the worst villain from the Cold War to be Joe McCarthy, who is reviled for telling indelicate truths about Communist infiltrators. Meanwhile, liberals have all but airbrushed the Rosenbergs from history, and they persist in defending Alger Hiss, whose guilt has not been seriously in doubt since the declassification of the Venona Project in 1995.

“Swiftboating” is intended to become the new “McCarthyism,” except that a whole category of military heroes is a lot tougher to smear than one flawed Senator. Liberals are unable to see the difference from within their insular world, where disdain for America’s defenders is simply the way of things.

During Vietnam, the liberal comic strip Pogo became famous for the punchline, “We have met the enemy, and it is us.” Leading up to the 2007 surge in Iraq, ran an ad against Gen. David Petraeus, in which it renamed him “betray us.” Assuming that the “us” in both contexts is the same, it looks as if Pogo had a point after all.

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