Precise Truth
Tuesday, August 24, 2004
NBC likely source of Nixon / O'Neill "Cambodia" tape
Kerrytistas are crowing about some tape they've received in which they claim John O'Neill discusses his secret Cambodia missions in person with Richard Nixon.

The rest of the story:

This video no doubt comes from NBC which had enough to produce a couple hours of specials a few weeks back. They originated along with the Nixon tapes in addition to some new material that was recently released FOIA.

O'Neill caught the interest of Nixon's team because they'd been monitoring Kerry's anti-US activities politically while the FBI was monitoring his interaction with the VVAW and Viet Nam reps. O'Neill - as he's discussed - was personally offended by Kerry's false war crime charges and was looking to debate him but the liberal media establishment (even then) was not willing to put him on.

Nixon & Colson (and I even believe Pat Buchanan was seen - though maybe not heard - in the materials I'm familiar with) specifically discussed the possibility of getting somebody like Dick Cavett to sponsor a debate between Kerry & O'Neill. Ultimately O'Neill got to meet former President Nixon. After greeting Nixon he told him - in a rather awkward moment, really, if you see it - that he'd voted for Hubert Humphrey and his parents were lifelong Democrats.

As for the "Cambodia" issue O'Neill has addressed this and pointed out (a) they've taken his statement out of context by discarding the rest of the sentence. (b) he specifically indicated river areas around the Cambodian border - not IN Cambodia - which, unless you're delusional, still remains a significant difference. (c) when he had the duties in those areas he was based in different places where Hanoi John French Kerry never was, throughout his short stay in Viet Nam.

Here is a Kerry + Nixon story & video; following is a relevant portion of a partial transcript with O'Neill portions edited in text (it does not include the O'Neill meeting introduction in which O'Neill mentioned his political legacy)

June 2, 1971: Oval Office meeting with Bob Haldeman
Haldeman: We got these guys now forming this Veterans for a – Peace with Justice, or uh – the veterans –
Nixon: They came in to see me? Are they here?
Haldeman: No we don’t want them to be able to see you yet. We don’t want to –
Nixon: Who are they?
Haldeman: Well, it’s this guy, uh, he’s got a beard, one of ‘em, and there’s this Navy officer [John O'Neill], just got out yesterday –
President: Yeah.
Haldeman: -- crew cut, real sharp looking guy who is more articulate than Kerry. He’s not as eloquent; he isn’t the ham that Kerry is. But he’s more believable.
Haldeman: Colson put this together.
Haldeman: This guy now [O’Neill], is gonna, he’s gonna move on Kerry. He’s gonna move around the country.

June 16, 1971: Oval Office meeting with John O’Neill
Nixon: I really feel that what you’re doing, you’ll take brickbats, you go on some of these TV shows like the Cavett thing, you’re gonna get banged, but – you’ll get terribly discouraged and say the whole country’s – and so forth. But I think ya gotta remember, uh, you have to remember, that uh, that uh, now {unintelligible] in Vietnam should be enough, that now you would have the [unint] to get back and reassure people that those few that come back – like Kerry and the rest – don’t speak for all.


Nixon: That’s great. Give it to him, give it to him. And you can do it, because you have a pleasant manner, too, because you’ve got – and I think it’s a great service to the country.


Nixon: You fellows have been out there. You’ve got to know, seeing the barbarians that we’re up against, you’ve got to know what we’re doing in that horrible swamp that North Vietnam is. 33:40 You’ve got to know from all our faults of what we have in this country that, that what we’re doing is right. You’ve got to know too, people are critics. Critics of the war, critics of [unint], run America down. Those that are, uh – well in every respect, either get out of Vietnam, get out of [unint], get out of the world, etcetera etcetera. You’ve gotta know that you’re on the winning s—that, that you’re on the right side.

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