Kerry’s first Purple Heart is looking increasingly bogus, and part of a plan for an early ticket home, having gotten his tickets punched and establishing his JFK creds. According to the attending physician:
Some of his crew confided that they did not receive any fire from shore, but that Kerry had fired a mortar round at close range to some rocks on shore. The crewman thought that the injury was caused by a fragment ricocheting from that mortar round when it struck the rocks.
That seemed to fit the injury which I treated.
What I saw was a small piece of metal sticking very superficially in the skin of Kerry’s arm. The metal fragment measured about 1 cm. in length and was about 2 or 3 mm in diameter. It certainly did not look like a round from a rifle.
I simply removed the piece of metal by lifting it out of the skin with forceps. I doubt that it penetrated more than 3 or 4 mm. It did not require probing to find it, did not require any anesthesia to remove it, and did not require any sutures to close the wound.
The wound was covered with a bandaid.
Emphasis mine. Even ignoring the unsubstantialness of the wound, if it occurred as his boatmates claimed, it wasn’t the result of enemy fire, which would make him ineligible for the medal. In fact, if he really did that, it should have resulted in discipline.
That may be just a tip of an iceberg of self-aggrandizement that resulted in this morning’s press conference (click on the “Media” link), in which many of his band of former brothers declared him unfit to be Commander-in-Chief. A press conference which, by the way, the media seems to be studiously ignoring. The only mention of it that I can find with a quick Google is in the Boston Herald.
And no, before anyone asks, I’m not saying that he fired the mortar round deliberately to injure himself. I rarely attribute an act to conspiracy that is as easily explained by incompetence. I’m just saying that it strongly appears that he was looking for every wound he could to get to his magic three.
[Update a few minutes later]
Here’s the letter that the other Swift Boat vets sent to Kerry.
[Wednesday morning update]
The Globe has covered it now. Interestingly, the supposedly right-wing Fox News doesn’t seem to have any web coverage of it, at least not on their politics page.