Amazingly, John F. Kerry is portraying himself as a war hero.

The truth is that he gave aid and comfort to the enemy in the only war in which he ever participated.

And, worse yet, he is still giving aid and comfort to the enemy our nation faces today.

There are serious questions about Kerry’s war record. He claims in recent interviews he enlisted in the Navy out of a sense of civic duty. Yet, in 1970, he told the Harvard Crimson he first appealed to the draft board to allow him to study in France for a year. Only after he was turned down did he enlist.

He served for a total of five months on that patrol boat he commanded, filming his own heroics every step of the way – films we will no doubt be treated to this presidential campaign season. He was awarded three purple hearts for mere scratches and opted to cut his tour of duty short as a result of those injuries.

But, for the moment, let’s concede he was a “war hero” in Vietnam.

Benedict Arnold, too, was a bigger war hero during the American Revolution. Yet his name today is synonymous with treason because of his despicable, traitorous actions after those heroics.

So it should be with John F. Kerry.

Kerry gave aid and comfort to the communist enemy in Vietnam even while U.S. prisoners were being held and tortured, even while young men were dying on the battlefields.

Here’s part of what he told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee April 22, 1971:

Several months ago, in Detroit, we had an investigation at which over 150 honorably discharged, and many very highly decorated, veterans testified to war crimes committed in Southeast Asia. These were not isolated incidents, but crimes committed on a day-to-day basis, with the full awareness of officers at all levels of command. It is impossible to describe to you exactly what did happen in Detroit — the emotions in the room, and the feelings of the men who were reliving their experiences in Vietnam. They relived the absolute horror of what this country, in a sense, made them do.

They told stories that, at times, they had personally raped, cut off ears, cut off heads, taped wires from portable telephones to human genitals and turned up the power, cut off limbs, blown up bodies, randomly shot at civilians, razed villages in fashion reminiscent of Ghengis Khan, shot cattle and dogs for fun, poisoned food stocks, and generally ravaged the countryside of South Vietnam, in addition to the normal ravage of war and the normal and very particular ravaging which is done by the applied bombing power of this country …

He told the committee that what really threatened the U.S. was “not the reds, but the crimes which we are committing.”

“The country doesn’t know it yet, but it has created a monster, a monster in the form of millions of men who have been taught to deal and to trade in violence, and who are given the chance to die for the biggest nothing in history; men who have returned with a sense of anger and a sense of betrayal which no one has yet grasped,” he said.

Kerry had no evidence of war crimes when he made that speech. If he did, he should have reported them. Instead, he accused the U.S. of a vague but ugly campaign of genocide against the Vietnamese because they were “oriental.” It was all a lie. He told the Harvard Crimson, after his Vietnam experience, that he was an internationalist and believed the U.S. military should only be dispatched into combat by the United Nations – just what you want in a president of the United States.

Worse yet, Kerry is up to his old tricks again. But he is not just some angry young man today. He’s the leading presidential candidate for the Democratic Party. And that makes it even more despicable that he is giving aid and comfort to an enemy far more insidious and dangerous to national security than the Vietnamese Communists.

Kerry voted unequivocally to authorize the war in Iraq. Then he decided he had been fooled and voted against authorizing the money needed to fight it. Now, as a presidential candidate he criticizes the war on a daily basis – once again while brave men are still on the battlefield risking their lives.

He says he doesn’t want to repeat the Vietnam experience, but that’s exactly what he is doing – pulling the rug out from under soldiers doing their duty in the war on terrorism and the liberation of Iraq, soldiers he himself voted to send there.

In 1971, he called on the Congress to stop the aid to our friends in Vietnam. He got his way and it led to a holocaust – to the killing fields. Now he’s trying to do the same thing in Iraq.

Somehow this nation managed to survive eight years with a draft dodger serving as commander in chief. Can we survive four or eight years under a president who has betrayed his own country twice for the political limelight?

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