Gilson grapples, Campenni pins

William Campenni served in the the same Texas Air National Guard unit as President Bush in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Bill has served as an authoritative source of information on matters related to Rathergate since 2004. Last night he wrote to comment on Gary Gilson’s letter to the editor attacking me and my Star Tribune column “Lies upon lies.” I noted but declined to engage the substance of Gilson’s misdirection in “Gilson grapples with truth.” Bill engages:

Good Grief! – to quote the little round head kid created by the pen of a St. Paul barber’s son. These people are like vampires, you can’t kill them. There must be a magic stake somewhere we can use.

Once more they fall back on that “it’s the content, not the typos” idiocy.

Gilson relies on the article written by the Boston Globe editor Walter Robinson, who in turn relied on a study by a retired Army guy, Gerald Lechliter.

I remember refuting much of both of those articles way back in 2004. Lechliter was an active Army colonel, who knew nothing of the way the Air Guard operated. You can not underestimate the huge intellectual, procedural, and cultural gap between the Army and the Army National Guard, and the even greater chasm between the Army and the Air National Guard. Lechliter’s opus is loaded with factual errors and misunderstandings of how the Air Guard worked, much like Army Guard guy Bill Burkett was ignorant of the Air Guard, and showed it in his bizarre Killian memos. It’s like a Hindi trying to understand the rubrics of the Catholic Church.

For example, Lechliter, Lukasiak, and another guy named Heldt used the absence of AF Form 40 (documentation of attendance) in Bush’s record as proof of either unexcused absence or illegal destruction of records. Nice try, but these Army guys did not know that we had our own National Guard forms, in this case NGB Form 105, to document attendance. In 1972 we used an IBM punch card version. Here is the current version.

Years ago somebody told me I should write a book on this whole sorry mess. I figured time had passed the story by, and publishers only print books written by TV talking heads who push them on their own shows and their buddies’ with free advertising.

Maybe it’s time to do it and end the constant recycling of these old and disproven tracts by the likes of Robinson, Lechliter, Lukasiak, Boehlert, et al.

I would like someday to have the opportunity to debate these morons. It would be such fun to beat them over the head with facts that they aren’t even aware of, lest it interfere with their delusions.


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