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Who Is John O'Neill?

If you really want to know what John O'Neill is all about, go read the Dick Cavett transcript of his debate with John Kerry from 1971 (thanks Jarhead Dad!). I read the whole transcript and came away with a lot of respect for him.

<...> I'd like to turn to a second issue. Mr. Kerry is the type of person who lives and survives only on the war weariness and fears of the American people. This is the same little man who on nationwide television in April spoke of, quote, "crimes committed on a day-to-day basis with the full awareness of officers at all levels of command," who was quoted in a prominent news magazine in May as saying, quote, "war crimes in Vietnam are the rule and not the exception," unquote. Who brought 50 veterans down to Washington to testify about alleged atrocities in April, the same 50 who after they had appeared on every major news network refused to provide any depositions or provide any details of any kind.

Never in the course of human events have so many been libeled by so few.

There were two and a half million of us who served there in Vietnam under the most severe restrictions in this nation's history. We have brought this war close to a close. We never engaged in mass bombing of population centers, as all nations did in World War II, and the reason we did not is because we are a moral people.

Fifty-five thousand Americans died there in Vietnam no matter what they thought about the war because they believed in this country, and those of us who survived came back to this country, by and large determined just to resume our normal lives after the disruption caused by war.
I think that, clearly, the biggest question we're going to have to deal with is the moral question of war crimes. There's quite a difference between coming back to this country and putting on a sack and saying, confessing, "I committed war crimes" and running for the Congress of the United States from Massachusetts and saying, "Well, all three million of us committed war crimes," and I suggest that that's the question that Mr. Kerry and I should be talking about because that's precisely and exactly what he said.