Thursday, October 19, 2006

Another thing Webb doesn't know.

As we learned from the Washington Post endorsement, Webb is weak on domestic issues, has no idea what's going on in Virginia, and needs a lot of work to be ready to be a Senator -- work he apparently hasn't really gotten started on yet.

Now, the Webbies have provided another example of knowledge Webb SHOULD have, but doesn't -- a major Veteran's group, which has existed for over 23 YEARS, made up of people from his own Vietnam war along with veterans of the 1st Gulf war (which Webb opposed).

From an article in the Daily Press, 2nd page:

The VFW endorsement was, Webb said, not unexpected because the organization generally endorses the administration. "Besides, they gave me their top award - the commander's award - in 2001," he noted.

And as to the other endorsement - especially considering that Webb was a highly decorated Marine during the Vietnam War - "I've never heard of them."

Of course, he never heard of Chaney Island either, but it's a critical location of importance in Virginia.

Anyway, what is this "obscure" group of Veterans? The National Vietnam & Gulf War Veterans Coalition:

The National Vietnam and Gulf War Veterans Coalition was established in 1983 to unify diverse veterans groups in support of common goals. Since its inception, the Coalition has assisted veterans, and advocated passage of legislation and administrative procedures vital to their well being.

In 1984 and again during 1989 – 1991, the National Vietnam Veterans Coalition directed media attention to remedial legislation concerning Agent Orange, and played a significant role in the passage of legislation in 1984 and 1991 providing for benefits.

Extensive Coalition resources have also been dedicated to helping members and non-members alike in their search for information from the United States and other governments about American servicemen reported missing-in-action or held captive in Vietnam.The Coalition played a critical role in securing passage of legislation to establish the select Senate Committee on POW/MIAs. In turn, this led to long-sought declassification of most POW/MIA intelligence materials.

From its ten member beginnings, the National Vietnam Veterans Coalition has grown to its present strength of over 100 member organizations representing Vietnam and Gulf War veterans throughout the United States, Canada, and Australia, and has since changed its organization name to the National Vietnam & Gulf War Veterans Coalition.

Originally, the strategy of the Coalition was to concentrate the entire Vietnam veterans movement on a single issue. Thus, while the first Agent Orange bill was pending in Congress in 1984, we directed massive media attention to that debate.We are credited with pushing that bill over when it was short of votes in the United States Senate. During the next major legislative push for Agent Orange legislation in 1990, the Coalition was the only non-chartered veterans organization even permitted to testify before the House of Representatives.

Beginning in August 1984, the Coalition has concentrated on the live prisoner-of-war issue, seeking to pressure more meaningful action. It has assisted numerous groups and individuals, both within and without the Coalition, who seek to publicize or dramatize the fact that POWs continue to be held. The Coalition has, for example, played an important, often behind-the-scenes role in assisting or promoting numerous actors, from the producers of several video documentaries through Robert Garwood. It has carried these concerns as far afield as a face-to-face meeting in the Kremlin with Nikolai Ryzhkov, then premier of the Soviet Union.

During the 1988 and 1996 Presidential elections, the Coalition successfully encouraged several hundred candidates to run for convention delegates in both parties.

Its advocacy and Congressional testimony in support of judicial review before the 100th Congress contributed to the pressure that resulted in the historic compromise legislation creating the new Court of Veterans Appeals.

In 1991, the Coalition played a critical role in securing the passage of legislation to declassify POW/MIA reports before the United States House of Representatives and to establish a Senate Committee on the POW/MIA issue. The Coalition was instrumental in securing the passage of the Missing Personnel Act of 1996 to reform the manner in which MIA cases are resolved.

In 2004, the Coalition endorsed over 100 candidates for the US Senate and House of Representatives who have supported, and/or promised to support, veterans issues and legislation.

The Coalition continues to remain active on the POW/MIA issue and in 2004/2005 has been working closely with DPMO in a more productive setting to aid in securing a full accounting or ALL missing servicemen.

Coalition members have been supportive in attending rallys and demonstrations on behalf of those men left behind and had been instrumental in demonstrating against Prime Minister Khai during his visit to the U.S. in the summer of 2005.

The Coalition continues to support legislation that will continue to benefit our veterans and our future veterans.

The Coalition is recognized under Section 501 (c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code as a non-profit organization. It has an annually elected board of directors consisting of thirteen members.

In the 1980s, when Webb wasn't chasing young woman at the military academy, he was serving in the Reagan administration, with a stint as the Secretary of the Navy. And remember, he was a decorated Vietnam Veteran.

And yet he has no clue about a major Vietnam veteran's group that was active in lobbying in the 1980s about Agent Orange? What does Webb care about other than writing "fiction" about a father performing perverted sex acts on his son?

This isn't some fly-by-night organization that just popped up to endorse his opponent. This is a well-respected, major organization, a coalition of a myriad of veteran's groups with a history of activism for those who served our country.

But simply because they did not endorse Webb, he dismisses them with a wave of his hand "never heard of them". Right.

First it's "Towel-heads", now its dismissing an esteemed veterans organization simply because he didn't get their approval. What's next, attacking his opponent for honoring a fallen Marine? Oh, wait, he already did that as well.


Joe Budzinski said...

Good coverage of Webb, Charles - deserves wider distribution.

Bill Garnett said...

As someone who has met Jim Webb, I found him bright, knowledgeable, open-minded, and refreshing - not like a "typical" politician.

I've also met George Allen, and I have to admit that he is slick, a real retail politician, and reminds me mostly of the BMOC types from high school days. Frankly Senator Allen has had his chance to make a difference and he has only been a cog in the wheel of a Republican strategy - I contend Virginia deserves better and the country's problems certainly require better.

Citizen Tom said...

Democrats never tire of pointing out our losses in Iraq. Yet when a mother takes pride in her son's sacrifice, they call it exploitation. Which use of the death of men and women who have honored this nation with their service is more appropriate, one that decries that service as a waste or one that lauds it?

I think the simple truth is that we constantly need to examine our military objectives. We should never thoughtlessly risk the lives of our service men and women. We must engage in an honest and open debate. The substance of such debate most certainly includes the willingness of our service men and women to risk their lives in the pursuit of our nation’s military objectives. Thus Webb’s censure of Allen for honoring a fallen Marine is both inappropriate and hypocritical.