By Mike Cavanaugh
During this campaign, John Kerry has accused President Bush of being on the wrong side of just about everything. Remember his catchy line: W stands for wrong? Well, if you take a close look at Kerry?s 20-year Senate record, you?ll find that it is he who has been on the wrong side of history on quite a few occasions.
Kerry?s first snafu came soon after being elected to the Senate in 1984. Then-President Reagan was seeking funding for the rebel Contras, who were fighting Daniel Ortega?s left-wing Sandinista government in Nicaragua. Reagan likened the Contras to modern day freedom fighters, the ?moral equivalent of our Founding Fathers.? On the eve of the vote in Congress, Kerry went to Nicaragua to meet with Ortega. The Reagan Administration accused Kerry of conducting his own foreign policy. Worse yet, a few days later, Ortega was in Moscow excepting aid from the Soviets. Kerry had been duped. This would not be the last time he crossed Reagan.
Kerry was elected to the Senate on a platform of arms reduction and nuclear freeze. He promised big cutbacks in Reagan?s defense budget at the height of the Cold War. He opposed the deployment of Pershing missiles in Europe, instead favoring nuclear disarmament. Kerry opposed Reagan?s plan of peace through strength, a plan that ultimately contributed to the fall of the Soviet Union.
Even as the Soviet Union was beginning to falter, Kerry referred to the end of Reagan?s presidency in 1988 as the end of eight years of ?moral darkness.? Judging by the outpouring of emotion at President Reagan?s funeral this past year, I would say that Kerry is in the minority with this opinion.
In 1991 John Kerry voted against the first Gulf War. At a hearing before that vote, Kerry chastised then Secretary of State James Baker for giving up on sanctions against Saddam Hussein. Kerry called for several more months of sanctions. Unbelievably, ?one? of his many positions on the current Iraq War is that we should still have waited for sanctions to work. What patience! Eleven years and 16, 17 or 18 U.N. resolutions later and the senator was still waiting for sanctions to work in Iraq.