Mixed-up

The Chicago Sun-Times carries Thomas Lipscomb’s article on the mixed-up files of John Kerry: “Did Kerry really release Navy records.” Lipscomb focuses on the mysterious unavailability of the SF 180 Kerry signed:

[H]ow an SF 180 is filled out is as important as signing it. But no one in the press has yet claimed to have seen a copy of Kerry’s SF-180. When asked if she had a copy of Kerry’s SF 180, the Globe’s Managing Editor Mary Jane Wilkinson said, “I haven’t seen it, and I don’t know if anyone here has.”
Kerry’s Senate offices could not provide a copy of the Kerry SF 180 and would not answer inquiries. Is it possible that Kerry filled it out wrong or sent it to the wrong place?
[Swift Boat Vet leader John] O’Neill made Kerry an offer. “I’ll be happy to bring one to Kerry’s office and help him fill it out. And then we can take mine and his and deliver them to the right place together to make sure, as Kerry puts it, ‘the truth in its entirety will come out.'”

Those interested in this issue should supplement Lipscomb’s article with the information provided in the updates to our post yesterday on the Kerry records here. Commenting on the explanations provided by John Boyle in those updates, reader Jim Hogue writes:

I think Mr. Boyle’s somewhat pedantic explanation is the correct one.
I’m on the road but if you have a copy of Burkett’s Stolen Valor (and if you don’t you should) you can find explained in great detail how he legally obtained veterans records (DD Fm 214s) from the NPRC. But the significance is that all the Vietnam records are stored at the NPRC and that’s where the SF 180 would have to go.
I commend Mr. Boyle for seeing something that was so bleedin’ obvious and yet so many (including me, a retired military investigator who used to pull records from NPRC regularly) missed; the Navy has nothing to do with Kerry’s records.
Cheers,
Jim Hogue, CMSGT USAF ret.

Josh Gerstein also explores the limitations of Kerry’s SF 180 in his New York Sun article: “Kerry hangs back from disclosure to all.” Gerstein quotes John O’Neill emphasizing absent records, but also quotes a Navy spokesman attesting to the completeness of the records released:

[T]he Navy spokesman, Commander Hernandez, said the latest release does include the papers from St. Louis. “It’s the whole record,” he said.

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