Larry Purdy is a Minneapolis attorney and a friend of ours. He is also a 1968 graduate of the United States Naval Academy who served in Vietnam from December 1969 until December 1970. He was assigned as one of the support personnel with NSA Det An Thoi, the main base for the swift boat group in which John Kerry served in the early part of 1969.
Larry is accordingly rather well-positioned both to question the bona fides of Kerry’s 1971 Senate Foreign Relations Committee testimony and to question the license with which he uses his distinguished Vietnam service to insulate himself from being held to account for his testimony.
This morning FrontPage features Larry’s “Open letter to John Kerry.” Larry writes:
Let me begin by saying that during my entire twelve month tour supporting the swift boat division in which you served in An Thoi, as well as the Seawolves (Navy attack helicopters), Strike Attack Boats (STABs) and SEALs in My Tho and Dong Tam, I never once heard reports about, much less witnessed, the sorts of atrocities you have accused American servicemen of committing. What I witnessed were young men, often frightened at the prospect of operating in areas largely controlled by the enemy, who did their jobs as skillfully and honorably as they knew how. While I do not presume to speak for them, and obviously I cannot speak for you, I did not know a single person in Vietnam who did any of the things you described.
Larry therefore has a few questions for Senator Kerry that the mainstream media have so far avoided asking him. The questions are all good, but here’s a particularly tough one: “Do you believe any former United States military officer who so much as tolerated the sort of behavior you described in your testimony should be elected President of the United States?”
Larry saves the following biting questions for footnote 4 of his open letter:
It is quite interesting to re-read your descriptions of the promises made to you by the Viet Cong and North Vietnamese representatives while you socialized with them in Paris concerning (a) the