The following was submitted to Politics Arizona from Matthew Kenney:
For political gain a right-wing, conspiracy-theory-touting blog has spent the last week exploiting Senator John McCain’s forced confession as a prisoner of war.
In addition to “Seeing Red AZ”, which is best known for its radical reporting, the MCRC Briefs, a known affiliate and puppet blog of County Chairman Tyler Bowyer has been pushing the story. Tyler Bowyer never served in the military; he and I are of similar age, but while I signed up to defend my country after graduating from college, Bowyer took a different, softer, easier path. And that’s fine, the Army isn’t for everyone. But what I will not abide, and what none of should abide, is a man who has never worn this country’s uniform attacking a hero like John McCain.
As a veteran who knows the horror of war too well, I’m calling on Tyler Bowyer: will you denounce, in the strongest possible terms, your MCRC Briefs pushing this scurrilous attack on John McCain. Or are you a coward?
It may be unnecessary, but given the attacks on his character and heroism, let’s review: Senator McCain spent five and a half years as a POW in the infamous prison known as the “Hanoi Hilton”. Senator McCain was relentlessly tortured and refused early release in order to allow other POW’s to return home first. Think about that. If you were offered early release from the hell that was a Vietnamese POW camp, would you refuse, like Senator McCain did? What would you have done, Tyler Bowyer?
I pray that I could have been as courageous as Senator McCain was.
Upon returning home, Senator McCain wrote a memoir about his time as a prisoner and a coerced confession he made. Like many other prisoners, Senator McCain was forced to say that he was being treated well, was not being tortured and was being held for war crimes against the North Vietnamese. This was obviously not true. Many people will remember a similar confession made by Admiral Jeremiah Denton. Admiral Denton was a prisoner of war and blinked Torture during a filmed confession. Like Denton, McCain’s confession was dismissed as enemy propaganda and he returned home as a hero and patriot. Yet, despite all of this, the desperate and dishonest have somehow found away to criticize the Senator for his time as a prisoner.
Soon the primary campaign will be over. Senator McCain leads his nearest opponent by 21 points. In a desperate last ditch attempt, Kelli Ward’s allies are attempting to smear an American hero. It won’t work, and Ward will soon be forgotten.
But we will not forget this attack on our hero. And those responsible must be held to account. Tyler Bowyer, which side are you on?