“We have learned something important since the days that I served in Vietnam,” Mr. Blumenthal said to the group gathered in Norwalk in March 2008. “And you exemplify it. Whatever we think about the war, whatever we call it — Afghanistan or Iraq — we owe our military men and women unconditional support."
He is right that we need to support our military. But he is wrong about his own service. He received five deferments, and served in the Marine Reserves Stateside. Oops.
Over the years Blumenthal has embellished his record, something that caused concern for his old friend, Christopher Shays, as detailed in this article, "Shays Watched As Blumenthal's Claims Evolved." Apparently, this was over a period of years:
[snip] Mr. Shays, a 10-term incumbent who lost a re-election bid in November 2008, was a conscientious objector during the Vietnam War. He said he and Mr. Blumenthal began their careers in politics at roughly the same time and frequently addressed the same groups. He recalled that early on, Mr. Blumenthal spoke humbly about his military record, rarely discussing it and always making clear that he had held only desk jobs and had not been in the line of fire, though he remained proud of having been a Marine.
“But as time went on, he would mention it more often, and Vietnam would show up,” even when Mr. Blumenthal was not speaking to veterans, Mr. Shays said.
Eventually, Mr. Shays said, he began hearing Mr. Blumenthal refer to having served in Vietnam. Mr. Shays said he assumed, wrongly, that Mr. Blumenthal had perhaps been a military lawyer there. That alone, he said, was enough for him to have had the impulse to advise Blumenthal to be careful, that people could interpret his remarks as a claim to have seen action there.
“I felt inclined to go to him and say, ‘Dick, in your service in Vietnam, you weren’t on the firing line, you don’t want to overstate that,’ ” Mr. Shays said. “I just felt like he was raising the stakes in a way that was inconsistent with what he’d said in the past. I was actually going to go up and speak to him. And I wish I had.”
Oh dear. Well, CT AG Blumenthal finally addressed his claim:
Um, no one is impugning your character, AG Blumenthal. You did that all by your very own self when you flat out LIED and said you served in Vietnam, and by your dissembling now. I commend you for your decision to join the Marine Corps during the Vietnam War. So did my uncle, only he actually DID go to Vietnam. You dishonor those who actually did serve overseas, who lived through a horrendous war, from which many never recovered even though they made it back to these shores. And you blame OTHERS for pointing out what you yourself said, and what is on video?
Blumenthal's opponent, Rob Simmons, actually did serve in Vietnam, and has this to say about such a claim:
I think Mr. Simmons summed this up beautifully. And, the additional insult of Blumenthal appearing at a VFW post did not pass Simmons by. Blumnthal had no right to be there, and compounded his infraction by choosing that locale.
Why can Mr. Blumenthal not just admit he lied?? He DOES owe an apology to those who did serve in country. Moreover, he owes an apology for taking the victim stance he is claiming now. It is unbecoming of someone of his stature, and someone who is a Marine (once a Marine, always a Marine).
Perhaps Mr. Blumenthal has forgotten the motto, Semper fidelis:
Semper Fidelis distinguishes the Marine Corps bond from any other. It goes beyond teamwork – it is a brotherhood and lasts for life.
Latin for "always faithful," Semper Fidelis became the Marine Corps motto in 1883. It guides Marines to remain faithful to the mission at hand, to each other, to the Corps and to country, no matter what.
Becoming a Marine is a transformation that cannot be undone, and Semper Fi reminds us of that. Once made, a Marine will forever live by the ethics and values of the Corps.
I think that says it all, don't you?