Is John McCain a War Criminal? Some of HIs Past TreasonSomervell County Salon-Glen Rose, Rainbow, Nemo, Glass....Texas


 

Is John McCain a War Criminal? Some of HIs Past Treason
 


9 August 2008 at 11:40:23 AM
salon

Suppose a guy was embarrassed over the fact that he was a POW while his Dad was in charge of the military in the Pacific during Vietnam. Might that guy, um, overcompensate?  I'm not voting for McCain but I noticed how many people in general just flat don't like him, don't think he's a war hero and, in fact, think he's a war criminal.I got to wondering why, found this article about his treason.

Besides the fact that he very quickly gave up information to his captors, the article says that when he was released, he asked the Vietnamese NOT to give up records of the returned US POWS-this in a place where some people said he wasn't tortured at all, and was making it up. Why would he NOT want people to see those records?

So why ISN"T McCain releasing his war time records?

But there was one subject that was off-limits, a subject the Arizona senator almost never brings up and has never been open about — his long-time opposition to releasing documents and information about American prisoners of war in Vietnam and the missing in action who have still not been accounted for. Since McCain himself, a downed Navy pilot, was a prisoner in Hanoi for 5 1/2 years, his staunch resistance to laying open the POW/MIA records has baffled colleagues and others who have followed his career. Critics say his anti-disclosure campaign, in close cooperation with the Pentagon and the intelligence community, has been successful. Literally thousands of documents that would otherwise have been declassified long ago have been legislated into secrecy.

For example, all the Pentagon debriefings of the prisoners who returned from Vietnam are now classified and closed to the public under a statute enacted in the 1990s with McCain’s backing. He says this is to protect the privacy of former POWs and gives it as his reason for not making public his own debriefing.

But the law allows a returned prisoner to view his own file or to designate another person to view it. APBnews.com has repeatedly asked the senator for an interview for this article and for permission to view his debriefing documents. He has not responded. His office did recently send APBnews.com an e-mail, referring to a favorable article about the senator in the Jan. 1 issue of Newsweek. In the article, the reporter, Michael Isikoff, says that he was allowed to review McCain’s debriefing report and that it contained “nothing incriminating” — although in a phone interview Isikoff acknowledged that “there were redactions” in the document. Isikoff declined to say who showed him the document, but APBnews.com has learned it was McCain.

Many Vietnam veterans and former POWs have fumed at McCain for keeping these and other wartime files sealed up. His explanation, offered freely in Senate hearings and floor speeches, is that no one has been proven still alive and that releasing the files would revive painful memories and cause needless emotional stress to former prisoners, their families and the families of MIAs still unaccounted for. But what if some of these returned prisoners, as has always been the case at the conclusion of wars, reveal information to their debriefing officers about other prisoners believed still held in captivity? What justification is there for filtering such information through the Pentagon rather than allowing access to source materials? For instance, debriefings from returning Korean war POWs, available in full to the American public, have provided both citizens and government investigators with important information about other Americans who went missing in that conflict.

Incidentally, I remember first reading about this in the book "You are Being Lied To" in an article entitled "The War Secrets Senator John McCain Hides", which discusses some of the bills McCain pushed through that gutted information about POWs.

Here's a PDF from Vietnam Veterans Against McCain on McCain's radio address in Hanoi


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