For those of you unfamiliar with the Atlanta Constitution-Journal, it’s not exactly a bastion of conservative thought. However, even their woodpile is not ideologically pure. Associate editorial page editor Jim Wooten writes this excellent piece on the SwiftVets/Kerry fracas (use bugmenot if you need a login). He points out that, whatever you think of Vietnam, or Kerry, or ugly political fights, the men making the allegations have earned the right to be heard:
Does it matter? It does to those he accused of committing atrocities.
The nation may be done with Vietnam, content to treat the era as a campaign backdrop, with no further interest in whether the atrocities Kerry alleges were commonplace.
But the two groups — the swift-boat veterans and other Vietnam veterans who feel wronged by his characterizations — have earned the right not to be dismissed as cranks and partisans, at least until they are fully heard.
While you’re there, you might also check out another great piece of his from a few days ago. Two tidbits from this one should whet your appetite (or inflame your spleen, I don’t know):
Kerry’s election as president of the United States would be the third humiliation of those who chose to serve in Vietnam.
This really isn’t about Bush — and the Bush campaign would be ill-advised to become involved in any way whatsoever.
It’s about Kerry and, in a real sense, it’s about the anti-war left that surfaces again in mobilizing opposition to the war in Iraq. Only 3 percent of the delegates who nominated Kerry agree that war in Iraq was worth the loss of life and cost to this country; 93 percent thought it was not.
Wow, shows how much I know. Who knew a guy this smart was hiding out in the Atlanta C-J editorial offices?