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Dole disappoints

Dear Editor:(This letter was originally addressed to Sen. Bob Dole.)I have long admired you and felt you were one of the few politicians in Washington who was wisely above the partisan fray and could be depended upon to genuinely support the public good. Thus it was especially shocking and disheartening to observe your snide comments on CNN questioning the validity of John Kerry’s war injuries and if he deserved his three Purple Heart medals. That was a disgusting spectacle, a pathetically low partisan blow that negates much of the honesty, integrity, and statesmanship that have marked most of your life. I couldn’t believe your audacity to question Sen. Kerry’s war injuries in Vietnam and, by inference, to question the integrity of our military’s award system and of all veterans who were ever injured in war, including yourself. How dare you imply that another soldier’s wounds weren’t deep enough, didn’t bleed enough, or and couldn’t hurt enough to be acknowledged as a true sacrifice for his country? It was obvious you were uncomfortable regurgitating such disgraceful partisan posturing, and I appreciate that you’ve at least tried to distance yourself from your comments. However, the fact remains that your tawdry comments on CNN endorsed and further perpetuated a pack of proven lies politically designed to discredit John Kerry’s service record to negate its contrast to the dismal service record of the president. On the one hand, you say you personally believe John Kerry was a genuine hero in the Vietnam war; then on the other hand – as evident by your apology to Kerry and request that he understand that as a Republican you have to support the president, so – parrot their campaign’s dishonest, destructive and preposterous innuendoes. What you said on CNN betrays you, our country, and all Purple Heart winners, as well as your comrade in arms, John Kerry, who volunteered for service while other privileged boys stayed home; who was wounded on three separate occasions; who still carries shrapnel in his leg; who received bronze and silver stars for heroism; and who indisputably placed his life in jeopardy to save the lives of others. And for what did you dishonor yourself by supporting such blatant and destructive partisan lies? For a yuppie coward who has never allowed his privileged self to be placed in harm’s way (though he does like wearing military clothing)? For a man so lacking in character, maturity and wisdom that he sacrificed our country’s security and economic future, plus the precious lives of our children/soldiers, in an unjustified war that served primarily his personal ego?If you truly are the exceptionally wise and honest politician I have always thought you to be, you will go back to CNN plus to all the media outlets, vigorously defend John Kerry’s war record of selfless heroism, and denounce all involved in the maliciously false Swift Boat ads that demean our nation as well as its current political process.Linda JeschofnigGlenwood SpringsGlenwood Springs


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