The Media Love Affair with McCain

By: Cliff Kincaid
Accuracy in Media

In the fight between Donald Trump and John McCain (R-AZ) over the senator’s military service, the liberal media have taken McCain’s side. But since when did the media get concerned about the noble cause of fighting communism in Vietnam?

Our media, led by CBS Evening News anchorman Walter Cronkite, who was then an influential media figure, protested the Vietnam War and prompted the U.S. withdrawal and communist takeover. His FBI file demonstrated Cronkite’s contacts with Soviet officials and how he was used as a dupe by the communists.

More than 58,000 Americans sacrificed and died to save that country from communism.

The liberal media never supported the war against communism in Vietnam. Yet they are now browbeating Trump over avoiding the war through deferments. Our media are full of hypocrites. They don’t admire McCain for fighting in Vietnam. They admire him because he is a “maverick” who frequently takes the liberal line, such as on “comprehensive immigration reform.”

If the liberals in the media are so enamored of McCain’s military service in Vietnam, let them revisit the history of the Vietnam War and express some outrage over the fact that it was a Democratic Congress that cut off aid to South Vietnam, leading to the communist takeover and the genocide in neighboring Cambodia.

What about some critical coverage of Obama’s recent meeting with Nguyen Phu Trong, the head of Vietnam’s Communist Party? Vietnam is one of the beneficiaries of Obama’s proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a trade agreement. If passed, it would benefit Vietnam’s communist rulers.

As we have pointed out, “Interestingly, Obama is trying to sell the agreement as a counter to China’s influence throughout the world. He wants us to believe that China and Vietnam somehow differ on their common objective of achieving world communism at the expense of America’s standing as the leader of what used to be the Free World. Both countries would gladly welcome the U.S. to help pay to accelerate the growth of their socialist economies and expand their markets.”

McCain supports the TPP; Trump does not.

We have pointed out that Vietnam is “a dictatorship with the blood of those Americans on its hands,” a reference to what the communists did to McCain and our soldiers, and “which has no respect for the human rights of its own people.”

A bipartisan congressional letter about Obama’s meeting with the Vietnamese communist reaffirmed this fact. It was signed by Rep. Loretta Sanchez (D-CA), who represents one of the largest Vietnamese populations outside of Vietnam in the world, in Orange County, California. She said, “I am disappointed that the administration has chosen to host Nguyen Phu Trong, the General Secretary of the Vietnamese Communist Party. There continues to be egregious and systemic human rights abuses in Vietnam, including religious and political persecutions. As an advocate for human rights in Vietnam I cannot ignore the dismal state of freedom of the press and freedom of speech.”

This is precisely what McCain and tens of thousands of other Americans were fighting to prevent.

Yet, McCain issued a statement, saying that he “warmly” welcomed Trong’s “historic trip” to the United States. He added, “This visit demonstrates the growing strength of the U.S.-Vietnam partnership as we celebrate the 20th anniversary of the normalization of relations between our countries.”

Why is McCain celebrating a “partnership” with a dictatorship that he and thousands of Americans fought against?

What’s more, McCain says the U.S. “must further ease the prohibition on the sale of lethal military equipment to Vietnam…”  Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry had partially lifted a ban on lethal weapons sales to Vietnam in October of 2014.

If our media are so concerned about an American Vietnam veteran being the target of a perceived insult from Trump, why haven’t they put pressure on the Obama administration to clean up Vietnam’s human rights record before going ahead with another agreement to benefit that regime? After all, this is the same regime that captured and tortured Sen. McCain.

The answer is that our media are using the current McCain controversy to damage Trump, who has almost single-handedly made illegal immigration into a national issue. They don’t really care about McCain’s service in Vietnam.

When President Bill Clinton normalized relations with communist Vietnam in 1995, he thanked Senator McCain and then-Senator John Kerry (D-MA) for agreeing with the notion that America had to “move forward on Vietnam.”

What has happened in the meantime?

We pointed out 11 years ago that President Clinton’s lifting of the U.S. trade embargo on Vietnam in 1995 was followed by a bilateral trade agreement. Kerry and McCain supported that, too. The U.S. trade deficit with Vietnam has been consistently rising ever since, to the point where it was $19.6 billion in 2013.

In his statement on Trong’s visit to the United States, McCain said, “Since 1995, annual U.S.-Vietnam trade has increased from less than $500 million to $36 billion last year.” He conveniently ignored the trade deficits that have cost American jobs.  For example, the communist regime has been dumping shrimp products into the United States at artificially low prices, and has become the fourth largest shrimp supplier to the U.S. market, even though several shipments have been detected with banned antibiotics.

At the time he extended diplomatic relations, Clinton said, “Whatever we may think about the political decisions of the Vietnam era, the brave Americans who fought and died there had noble motives. They fought for the freedom and the independence of the Vietnamese people. Today the Vietnamese are independent, and we believe this step will help to extend the reach of freedom in Vietnam and, in so doing, to enable these fine veterans of Vietnam to keep working for that freedom.”

False. The Vietnamese people did not become independent. They became slaves of the communists.

Obama recently met with their slave master. But our media didn’t utter any tears for the victims of communism.

You may also recall that then-Senator Kerry ran a Senate investigation that brought the search for live American POWs from the war to a close. McCain was a member of the Kerry committee.

Since McCain has been in the news for his military service, this should have been a newsworthy topic for our media.

Roger Hall, A POW/MIA researcher, went to court, having sued the CIA for documents on missing or abandoned Vietnam POWs. Hall and many others are convinced that hundreds of American POWs were left behind in Vietnam.

Former Senator Bob Smith (R) of New Hampshire wrote the legislation creating the Senate Select Committee on POWs and MIAs in the early 1990s in order to get the truth released to the public.

“Despite the release of thousands of documents and the testimony of dozens of witnesses, I could not complete the job. Senator John Kerry, the chairman of the Select Committee, and Senator John McCain were more interested in establishing diplomatic relations and putting the war behind them than they were about finding the truth about our missing,” said Smith. “I fought them constantly to the point of exhaustion. It was a very sad chapter in American history.”

A YouTube video exposed McCain’s efforts to block access to POW information and examines his alleged cooperation with the North Vietnamese while he was in captivity. Senator Smith is one of those featured in the video.

Why don’t the media remind us of that? We have the answer. They are too busy bashing Trump and trying to look patriotic about the Vietnam War.



Arlene from Israel

I’ve long known that Daniel Greenfield – who formerly posted as “Sultan Knish” – is an incisive, politically-incorrect, “tell-it-as-it-is” writer.  In his latest piece – “Time to Call Obama and Kerry What They Are: Traitors” – he does not disappoint.

Credit: FrontPage Magazine

Greenfield is not one to dance around reality, excusing Obama as someone who just doesn’t get it, or who is too idealistic, or…  He presents facts straight on, and draws his conclusions (emphasis added):

“The last time a feeble leader of a fading nation came bearing ‘Peace in our time,’ a pugnacious controversial right-winger retorted, ‘You were given the choice between war and dishonor. You chose dishonor, and you will have war.’ That right-winger went on to lead the United Kingdom against Hitler.

“The latest worthless agreement with a murderous dictatorship is being brandished by John Kerry, a man who instinctively seeks out dishonor the way a pig roots for truffles…

“John Kerry betrayed his uniform and his nation so many times that it became his career. He illegally met with the representatives of the North Vietnamese enemy in Paris and then next year headed to Washington, D.C. where he blasted the American soldiers being murdered by his new friends as rapists and murderers ‘reminiscent of Genghis Khan’…

“Kerry revolted even liberals with his gushing over Syria’s Assad. Now he’s playing the useful idiot for Assad’s bosses in Tehran.

“For almost fifty years, John Kerry has been selling out American interests to the enemy. Iran is his biggest success. The dirty Iran nuke deal is the culmination of his life’s many treasons.

It turns America from an opponent of Iran’s expansionism, terrorism and nuclear weapons program into a key supporter. The international coalition built to stop Iran’s nukes will instead protect its program.

And none of this would have happened without Obama.


“Obama began his rise by pandering to radical leftists on removing Saddam. He urged them to take on Egypt instead, and that’s what he did once in office, orchestrating the takeover of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and across the region. The Muslim Brotherhood was overthrown by popular uprisings in Egypt and Tunisia, but Obama had preserved the Iranian regime when it was faced with the Green Revolution. Now Iran is his last best Islamist hope for stopping America in the Middle East.

“Obama and Kerry had both voted against designating Iran’s IRGC terrorist ringleaders who were organizing the murder of American soldiers as a terrorist organization while in the Senate…

Throughout the [negotiating] process they chanted, ‘No deal is better than a bad deal.’ But their deal isn’t just bad. It’s treason.

Obama isn’t Chamberlain. He doesn’t mean well. Kerry isn’t making honest mistakes. They negotiated ineptly with Iran because they are throwing the game. They meant for America to lose all along.

“When Obama negotiates with Republicans, he extracts maximum concessions for the barest minimum. Kerry did the same thing with Israel during the failed attempt at restarting peace negotiations with the PLO. That’s how they treat those they consider their enemies. This is how they treat their friends.

A bad deal wasn’t just better than no deal, it was better than a good deal.

Obama did not go into this to stop Iran from going nuclear. He did it to turn Iran into the axis of the Middle East.

Obama made this deal to cripple American power in the Middle East.

“Iran get[s] to keep its nuclear facilities, its reactors, including the hidden underground fortified Fordow facility which Obama had repeatedly stated was, ‘inconsistent with a peaceful program.’

“The deal gives Iran a ‘peaceful’ nuclear program with an equally peaceful ballistic missile program. It puts into place a complicated inspection regime that can be blocked by Iran and its backers. It turns Iran into the new North Korea and the new Saddam Hussein, lavishing money on it while running future administrations through a cat and mouse game of proving violations by the terrorist regime.

“And Obama made sure the Iran deal was written to make the proof as hard to obtain as possible.

“That hasn’t stopped Obama from lying and claiming that ‘Inspectors will have 24/7 access to Iran’s nuclear facilities.’ Meanwhile France’s Foreign Minister, somewhat more accurately put it, ‘The IAEA will be able to gain access to Iran’s military sites, if necessary, under certain conditions’…


“One of the first items on Iran’s shopping list will be Russia’s S300 missile system to keep Israel or a future American administration from taking out Iran’s nuclear program. But Iran is also pursuing ICBMs that can strike at Europe and America. Obama’s decision to phase out the ballistic missile sanctions on Iran will make it easier for Iran to build weapons that can destroy major American cities.

And Iran’s new cash will empower it to fund terrorism in Israel, America and around the world.

“Obama claims to ‘have stopped the spread of nuclear weapons’ by allowing Iran to keep enhancing its nuclear program and rewarding it with ballistic missiles for its ‘peaceful’ intentions. He claims to have negotiated ‘from a position of strength and principle’ when in fact he surrendered to the Iranians on position after position. Tehran negotiated from strength and principle. Obama sold out America

“Obama and Kerry have not made this deal as representatives of the United States, but as representatives of a toxic ideology that views America as the cause of all that is wrong in the world. This is not an agreement that strengthens us and keeps us safe, but an agreement that weakens us and endangers us negotiated by men who believe that a strong Iran is better than a strong America

“Their ideology is not America. It is not American. It is the same poisonous left-wing hatred which led Kerry to the Viet Cong, to the Sandinistas and to Assad. It is the same resentment of America that Obama carried to Cairo, Havana and Tehran. We have met the enemy and he is in the White House.”



I’m not going to pursue a great deal of analysis now on how the Israeli government will make the case against this deal, or how Congress is likely to vote.  It’s too soon for that.  But this must be shared, immediately:

“Aside from removing UN conventional arms embargo on Iran after five years, the nuclear deal signed Tuesday by the P5+1 powers and Iran grants several other questionable concessions to the leading state sponsor of terror, unrelated to its controversial nuclear program.

“The most glaring of these concessions is seen by some as the inclusion of the name Qassem Soleimani on a list of companies and individuals who will have sanctions against them removed as expressly detailed in the deal, reports Yedioth Aharonoth.

Someimani is the Iranian Revolutionary Guards commander who leads the elite Qods Force, which conducts foreign operations outside of Iran’s borders and directs the Islamic regime’s terrorist activities throughout the world.

“While no clear reason was given as to why Soleimani – who is on the official American terrorist list, and whose Qods Forces have murdered American soldiers in Iraq – had individual sanctions against him removed, the move apparently comes due to the shared fight against Islamic State (ISIS) that Soleimani has been leading in Iraq in parallel to American efforts.

“Indicating the willingness to bend on principles in order to secure an Iranian alliance against [ISIS], US President Barack Obama was revealed to have sent secret letters last October to Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenmei asking for cooperation against ISIS, in addition to asking for help in sealing the nuclear deal.

Thanks to the removal of sanctions, the arch-terrorist Soleimani will now be able to travel freely throughout the world, advancing Iran’s terror interests.”


IRGC Quds force head Qassem Soleimani
Credit: Reuters


If there is a glimmer of positive news here, it is that Prime Minister Netanyahu and head of the opposition Yitzhak Herzog have agreed that on the Iran issue it is important to show a united front:

Herzog and Netanyahu (archive)
Credit: Nati Shohat/Flash90



Here we have incisive cartoon commentary from Ya’akov Kirschen, creator of Dry Bones:

 Dry Bones cartoon, Kirschen, Iran, agreement,Nukes,America,


I want to remind my readers in America how much depends on you.  You must stand up and be counted in the course of the next 60 days, with regard to your opposition to the Iran deal.  The situation is deadly serious and passivity is not an acceptable option.

For those in the NY area:

Watch for rallies in other parts of the country, as well.


EMET – The Endowment for Middle East Truth – which does lobbying in Congress, is urging contacts with Senators and Congresspersons.  You are being asked by EMET to fill out a form that will allow them to arrange crucial meetings in the Capitol.