By Dr. Robert P. Abele: What Happened to John Kerry? From Anti-War Vietnam
to Bellicose Rhetoric on Syria. As he has demonstrated by his bellicose rhetoric on Syria, John Kerry has made complete his 180- degree transition from an anti-war Vietnam veteran who in 1971 thtrew his navy medals back onto the White House lawn and who testified to Congress on the immorality of war, to a belligerent warrior without a cause. Tracing the causes of this shift is perhaps pointless, but a comparison between the 1971-Kerry and the 2013-Kerry will reveal the corrupting influence of the combination of money and power with its necessary consequence of surrendering what Kerry himself calls one's "moral compass." This article does not intend to attack John Kerry as a person. I respect and even like John Kerry. But Kerry is a significant and interesting example of how one operates when they surrender their moral compass and take instead the path to power over principle. Let us look at three facts that correlate with this shift. First, his change of mind regarding the morality of war correlates with his investment in war machinery. Here is Kerry in 1971 congressional testimony: "We fought using weapons against "oriental human beings." We fought using weapons against "oriental human beings." We fought using weapons against "oriental human beings." We fought using weapons against those people which O do not believe this country would dream of usingwere we fighting in the European theater." Here he is in 2013: Among lawmakers on Capitol Hill, John Kerry gas the most money invested in defense contractors, up to $38,209,020. This includes the significant investments in Raytheon and in General Electric, both of whom are major players in the U.S. war machine. Kerry decided in January to set aside his stock in these companies as a prerequisite to becoming secretary of state. Additionally, Kerry's support for chemical companies such as Dow Chemicals and Monsanto who manufactured the Agent Orange Kerry said he knew was being used while he was in Vietnam, is now well known, see Humanrightsinvestigations.org for more. Second, the process of his functioning as a small cog in the war machine in Vietnam to functioning as a small cog in the war machine in Vietnam to functioning as a big cog in the Empire correlates with Kerry changing the direction of his moral compass from moral principles and the value of individual civilian lives and interests of empire's power. In 1971, what Kerry said is worth quoting at length: We feel that what threatens this country is not the reds, but the crimes which we are committing that threaten it, that we have to speak out. We saw Vietnam ravaged equally by American bombs and search and destroy missions, as well as by Viet Cong terrorism, and yet we listened while this country tried to blame all of the havoc on the Viet Cong. We rationalized destroying villages in order to save them. We saw America lose her sense of morality as she accepted very coolly a My Lai and refused to give up the image of American soldiers who hand out chocolate bars and chewing gum. We watched pride allow the most unimportant battles to be blown into extravaganzas, because we couldn't lose, and we couldn't retreat.