Ghosts Of Nam Redux

by digby

I wondered if this would rear its head in this election. I thought not, since it would likely have to be driven by right wing bottom feeders like Ted Sampley and they seem to be laying out. Lo and behold, it's being reported by none other than Sydney Schanberg in the The Nation:

Sydney H. Schanberg, the longtime New York Times reporter and editor and Newsday columnist -- and author of "The Killing Fields" -- has written a 9000-word investigative piece on John McCain and his longstanding efforts to, as Schanberg asserts in his lede, "hide from the public stunning information about the live Vietnam prisoners who, unlike him, didn't return home."

Part of the piece has just gone up at The Nation web site ( and will appear in its Oct. 6 issue. A full version, with graphics, appears at The Nation Institute site. [...] Now Schanberg criticizes the press for allowing this whole subject to be swept under the rug for so long.

The new piece details the evidence that hundreds may have been left behind, along with McCain promoting federal prohibitions that keep key evidence classified. Schanberg also reveals that he received a personal briefing in 1992 from high-level CIA officials who said intelligence suggested that many men were not freed -- and later executed. He raises several questions about why McCain has acted the way he has but, in any case, strongly believes that McCain owes the voter "some explanations." He also urges reporters to "dig into" the archives and complete "the historical record."

This is McCain's Vietnam shadow story, which had he been a Democrat would have been dragged into the election months ago. It's dogged him for years and is responsible for some of the most volatile altercations of his political career.

I had been under the impression that this whole thing was debunked and put to bed. But Schanberg is no fool and his massive article is appearing in The Nation. Perhaps there is more to this thing than I thought.

Via Political Carnival