McCain Was Not Tortured, POW Guard Claims

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

The narrative of John McCain’s time as a POW goes like this: in 1967, he fell into enemy hands after his plane was shot down in Vietnam, where he was frequently tortured by his captors. In 1973 McCain told US News & World Report his prison guards had beaten him “from pillar to post”. After being worked over at intervals for four days, he said, he had become suicidal and agreed to sign a “confession” admitting to war crimes.

For his service in Vietnam and his actions as a POW, McCain was awarded the Silver Star, the Legion of Merit, the Bronze Star, the Navy Commendation Medal and the Purple Heart.

But In an interview with the Italian daily Corriere della Sera, Nguyen Tien Tran acknowledged that while conditions in the prison were “tough, though not inhuman,” adding, “We never tortured McCain. On the contrary, we saved his life, curing him with extremely valuable medicines that at times were not available to our own wounded.”

Tran, now 75, said when McCain reached Hanoi, he had the worst injuries he had seen in a downed pilot but he denied torturing him, saying it was his mission to ensure that McCain survived. As the son of the US naval commander in Vietnam, he represented a valuable propaganda weapon.

This entry was posted in John McCain, Old Coot, Republicans and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to McCain Was Not Tortured, POW Guard Claims

  1. Raymondo99025 says:

    The nature of McCain’s physical injuries when his plane was shot down suggests he would’ve died had he not received medical care. I suppose McCain has a flair for the dramatic and he understood how an enhanced Vietnam saga would help him in his run for the U.S. Senate.

  2. Joaquin says:

    We will never know the truth about McCain’s time in captivity. As years pass, the line between fact and fiction blurs.

    All I do know is, McCain has shamelessly exploited his Vietnam record. First to get elected to Congress, then later, to incite respect and inoculate himself from criticism.

    I don’t understand how being a POW qualifies you for anything other than VA benefits. McCain isn’t particularly bright or well informed. He’s a lightweight, yet the voters in Arizona keep sending him back to Washington.

  3. feminazi says:

    I think you hit the nail on the head, Christopher. In McCain’s biography, he’s crafted a narrative and it has worked for him for decades. It wasn’t until her threw his hat in the presidential race that people who knew him at the time came forward to say his version of the facts didn’t square with reality.

  4. Oooh, kick ass scoop, kid. Love it!

  5. Fran says:

    I’m sure being a POW for that many years alone was physical & mental torture. I respect the fact it must have been hell, and being imprisoned while the Vietnam war raged on had to have been a harrowing life threatening & changing experience.

    But having endured this horrific war experience, has not made him wiser about the ways of war, and it does not qualify him to be President.

    It makes me realize this man really needs to retire.
    The Vietnam imprisonment, 26 years in Congress. Multiple bouts with skin cancer.
    Go retire already!

  6. Ingrid says:

    As mentioned, he’s written his own narrative. As for the claim that he wasn’t tortured, if memory serves me correctly pow’s were used for negotiations (foods, political deals etc). Unlike the Japanese who were cruel to the extreme (dutch WW2 victims were not particularly greeted with sympathy as people thought only the Germans had the ability to be cruel and murderous) any rate, pow’s were used for negotiations and I have a suspicion that he came out alive and fairly well because of one. Can’t prove it of course. As for McCain’s continuous use of his pow experience being some sort of entitlement to super patriot status is indeed ridiculous. he has been exhibiting weird and erratic behaviour that makes you think ‘ptsd’.. at some point in your life, the covered up bits in yourself cannot but resurface and no narrative in the world can save you from your own demons..
    just my rambling two cents..

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