Rally for Rep. John Murtha
by Rich Gardner
30 Sep 06


We had heard that the successors to the "Swift Boat" band that trashed John Kerry's campaign for President in 2004 were going to re-convene to try and trash Representative John Murtha's reputation as well (It apparently wasn't much.  The "Swifties" cancelled the motorcycle parade due to the threat of rain.).  We took three vans to Johnstown to get the 30 of us there.  The crowd was about 1,200.

the stand

The propagandistic quality of the criticism of Murtha can be viewed here (2nd article down).  Factually, it's a really unimpressive accusation.  Iranian President Ahmadinejad used the term "in cold blood" and several months previously, [gasp!] so did Murtha!  But it was a great excuse to post pictures of Ahmadinejad and Murtha both making speeches side by side. 


In an incredibly revealn interview, Bill Kristol, the editor of the Weekly Standard and very prominent neocon hawk (Who, like most hawks on the Iraq War, "never heard a shot fired in anger" in his life) explains the problem with America's performance in the war:

KRISTOL: Well, I hope not because it really wouldn't be the right thing to do and I think President Bush wants to do the right thing [i.e. build up the force in Iraq by sending more troops] and I think he knows there's a problem.  He can't probably do anything until election day.  I very much hope after election day he takes a fresh look at Iraq, sends enough troops, surges the...goes on the offensive there and plays for victory because..
KRISTOL: It's not working, but some of the alternatives would work, would work worse and to be fair to him he has been....look  ... I....Two months ago a Democratic senator said to me, I was saying Bush was going to stay the course and I admire him for his sticktoitive.. for his courage on Iraq and he said, "You're kid... You're crazy...everyone in Washington knows he is going to pull troops down before election day. He wants to give those Republican congressional candidates the benefit of seeing troops come home."  It is to Bush's credit that he did not do that. We have moved a few more troops into Iraq. Bush has committed...

more crowd

KRISTOL: I agree we should move more, but I think Bush has done...at least he has held his own ...ummm... I don't know...it's going back and forth there right now... I agree we could hit a crisis in two, three, four months unless we surge troops after the election. I thinks its hard to ask Bush to do something in the middle of this election season.  We've seen how poisonous this political debate has gotten and I think... I just hope... I think he's right to hang tough and I hope he does the right thing after election day.

KRISTOL:  Well I think we can make it a winning thing, I think Bush will make it a winning thing, It's a democracy. It has drawbacks. [emphasis added in all cases]

The point made here is obviously that democracy is not the most ideal form of government for waging unprovoked wars of choice with, especially when those wars get expensive in terms of lives lost and equipment broken and worn out and billions upon billions of dollars  


Representative Murtha meets with supporters. 
On Iraq, the latest National Intelligece Estimate holds that:

The intelligence estimate, completed in April, is the first formal appraisal of global terrorism by United States intelligence agencies since the Iraq war began, and represents a consensus view of the 16 disparate spy services inside government. Titled “Trends in Global Terrorism: Implications for the United States,’’ it asserts that Islamic radicalism, rather than being in retreat, has metastasized and spread across the globe.

Heckuva job, Georgie, heckuva job. 

chillin' & relaxin'

We gather at a restaurant afterwards. 
Bill Perry also took a set of pictures (and identifies a lot of the people in the pictures).