Axis of Right

Three Native Rhode Islanders Commenting From the Right on Politics and Anything Else

John Edwards Supports Phony Soldier

Posted by Mike on September 29, 2007

This is rich. John Edwards has criticized Rush Limbaugh for using the phrase “phony soldiers”when describing the only soldiers liberals actually support. The soldier in question was Jesse MacBeth, a soldier from Tacoma who was sentenced to five months in prison for lying about war atrocities that never happened, the scope of his own service, and collecting benefits he wasn’t entitled to. According to Limbaugh, his statement had nothing to do with anti-war soldiers. His comments concerned one soldier, the convict MacBeth. Presumably, what Limbaugh meant by “phony soldiers” was soldiers who initially serve and then do something to disgrace the uniform. You know, people like MacBeth, John Kerry, and Benedict Arnold.

I think John Edwards has some nerve accusing anyone else, especially a pro-military stalwart like Limbaugh, of not supporting our soldiers after he voted to send our troops to war, only to turn around and vote against funding them while they were in harm’s way. I wonder what Iraq War veterans think of John Edwards? Funny how CNN and CBS haven’t run any polls on that subject lately. Then again, I think the lack of media polls on what Iraq War veterans think about the left tells us all we need to know.

What disgusts those of us who either know or are directly related to soldiers who have served in Iraq are people like Jesse MacBeth and John Edwards.


6 Responses to “John Edwards Supports Phony Soldier”

  1. wickle said

    I don’t give Limbaugh the pass on this one … He likes to play this game of speaking in generalities, and then claiming that he only meant a few specific people … in context, his comment referred to veterans who criticize the war. He’s backpedaling as he often does when caught in something like this …

    He likes to provoke a strong reaction, then act like he’s being picked on by the big meanies when he’s called on it. Looking at his own transcript, he said, “phony soldiers.” Now, his own article “Anatomy of a Smear” has him claiming that he was referring to one soldier, as he had in the Morning Update.

    What’s with the “s” in “soldiers,” then? Bad grammar? It looks like a plural to me.

    When the caller added, “The phony soldiers. If you talk to any real soldier and they’re proud to serve, they want to be over in Iraq, they understand their sacrifice and they’re willing to sacrifice for the country,” he did nothing to correct his comment. He left intact the implication, if not the explicit statement, that anyone who doesn’t want to be in Iraq isn’t a real soldier.

    There are legitimate Iraq vets who are critics of the war. Whether intentional or not, Limbaugh insulted them. It may have been sloppy wording, but if so he needs to get off his high horse and apologize, not strike his self-righteous pose and pretend that he’s just being unjustly picked on.

    MacBeth is beneath contempt, there’s no question about that. But that doesn’t excuse Limbaugh.

  2. Mike said

    Hi Wickle:

    I would agree if I based my take solely on the language used in the call. He did say “soldiers”, but when you look at Limbaugh’s support for our military going back to at least the early 1990s (maybe longer, my knowledge of Rush only goes back to the early 1990s), it is clear that he is not cavalier about those who serve in the military.

    I’m going to give him the benefit of the doubt because of his decades of support for the military trumps the “s” in this one statement. As does the rest of the context of the article. The focus of the conversation was MacBeth. The “s” probably refers to other phony soldiers (Arnold, Kerry, some Abu Gharib people), not those who merely oppose the war. Moreover, even if the original exchange leads people to question his support for the military (which is should not), he did clarify it later on.

    All that said, parsing language is unnecessary to defend Limbaugh on this one. His decades of supporting the military shouldn’t be in question because of an “s” coupled with liberals who take him out of context to hide their own miserable records on military issues. He supports the troops and respects their service, even those who oppose the war.

    As someone who knows some soldiers who served in Iraq quite well, I would never excuse someone who disparaged a soldier merely because the soldier is anti-war. But Rush did no such thing. The real shame is on people like Edwards who have made careers out of undermining our military only to slander those who support it.

  3. wickle said

    Fair enough … I think I’ll just agree to disagree with you on this one. I’m not a big Limbaugh fan, because I think he’s generally belligerent and tries to be obnoxious. Even when I agree with him, I don’t usually like how he said what he said.

    You, apparently, are a fan. That’s fine. I used to be, but then my tastes changed. No big deal. I think we agree that (a) MacBeth is lower than scum, and (b) Edwards lacks the moral authority to condemn much of anyone.

    80% allies and all that …

  4. Salinger said

    You are missing the entire context of the segment, and focusing solely on the call. Immediately following the call, Limbaugh went into an entire overview of the MacBeth situation, and then referred to him and others like him (those who have lied about their military service) as “phony soldiers”. It was obvious that he was referrning to this breed of soldiers who the left lifts up (MacBeth is only the latest example, there have been others) and who lie about their service.

    As far as Rush, I’m a little suprised at your opinion. Rush is far tamer than most of talk radio, and he has had a major impact on advancing the conservative movement in this country over the past 19+ years.

  5. […] CEO of Clear Channel Communications, asking him to make Rush apologize for remarks covered in an earlier blog post here at […]

  6. wickle said

    I’ve thought it over, by the way, and I’ve recanted.

    The more I look at it, the more I think that Limbaugh was in the right this time, and I have been excessively (as you put it) parsing the language.

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