On Thursday, the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) begins its annual conference. The Washington Times writes, “One of the more timely titles of CPAC’s slate of panel discussions: ‘The Left’s Repeated Campaign Against the American Soldier.’” The panel will reunite operatives from the Swift Boat Veterans For Truth, a group that dedicated itself in 2004 to attacking Senator John Kerry’s record during and after his service in Vietnam.
CPAC’s website indicates that the panel participants will be: Ret. Col. George E. “Bud” Day, Mary Jane McManus, Carlton Sherwood, and Rep. Sam Johnson (R-TX). Johnson was on the House floor last week attacking Iraq war critics relentlessly for “cutting funding of the troops,” while conveniently forgetting that he “wholeheartedly supported withholding funds” to end the U.S. involvement in Bosnia in 1995. Some background on the other panelists:
George “Bud” Day: He appeared in national advertisements for the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth campaign. Day said of John Kerry, “My view is he basically will go down in history sometime as the Benedict Arnold of 1971.” Following the 2004 election, Day signed on as President of the newly formed Vietnam Veterans Legacy Foundation, which absorbed virtually all the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth members and officers. Day claimed that “left-wing propagandists in the press” have told a “false history of Vietnam” that has been used to “demoralize our troops.”
Mary Jane McManus: A prominent and outspoken member of the Swift Boat Vets, she appeared in their national TV ad campaign and said, “John Kerry gave aid and comfort to the enemy by advocating their negotiating points to our government.”
Carlton Sherwood: A former Bush administration official, Sherwood was the producer of the television film “Stolen Honor,” which was broadcast by the Sinclair Group and contained a host of smears and lies. The film was “an anti-Kerry attack ad masquerading as a documentary.”
Among other prominent conservatives, CPAC will be hosting Vice President Cheney and White House Press Secretary Tony Snow. Does the White House endorse the view that there is a campaign by the left “against the American soldier”?
UPDATE: A major contributor to the Swift Boat Vets was nominated by President Bush to serve as Ambassador to Belgium. The hearing for his nomination was today. Click here for more info.