edit: i have read these transcripts straight up, but liked Kevin Tracey's take on them best. what we have here is the taped and written words of then P.O.W John McCain as he repeatedly is given special treatment from his captors due to his family lineage and father's military and political connections.... unlike Mr. Tracey, i have never had the privilege to serve in our armed forces due to hearing problems, and actually feel kind of sorry for that scared young man and wonder what i myself would have done in his shoes. i present this not so much for political reasons; the time frame of so many years besides the circumstances of the transcripts (being communist propaganda) bear watching. I am a including Kevin's comments to theses transcripts because he just nails it and lays it out better than i ever could. Yet no matter what your political persuasion. it still remains a fascinating glimpse of another era and inside the mind of a very scared, wounded, and possibly drugged young prisoner of war named John Sidney McCain ~ aaron
***I’m curious to know why John McCain felt it was okay to talk to the North Vietnamese, whom the United States was actively engaged in war, but not the Iranians who we are not currently at war with.
Don’t know what I’m talking about? Read these transcripts of propaganda John McCain made for the Communists while he was a Prisoner of War. The first interviews were done on November 9th, 1967. John McCain was shot down just 14 days earlier on October 26th.
Parts of the declassified translations remain blacked out, suggesting John McCain divulged sensitive information to the Communists that, 40 years later, the US Government still doesn’t want us to know about.***
Cuban Radio 11/9/1967
“There is not any doubt for me; things are taking place in a favorable way for North Vietnam. In particular, before world opinion at present, the United States is (? virtually ?) standing alone.”
“My assignment to the Oriskany, I told myself, was due to serious losses in pilots which were sustained by this aircraft carrier due to its raids over North Vietnam territory –VNA) and which necessitated replacements. From 10 to 12 pilots were transferred like me from the Forrestal to the Oriskany. Before I was shot down we had made several sorties. Altogether I made about 23 flights over North Vietnam.”
[About the mission he was captured on:] “The briefing was held in the morning. That’s right. I remember that it was in the morning that they told me the situation and the plan of the raid, which should take place about noon. A reconnaissance officer explained this plan to me. They showed me photographs of my target and marked out the paths to be followed by the Oriskany at this point. They pointed out to me a number of antiaircraft positions near Hanoi and a number of possible rocket positions, the position of our rescue ships, the radio frequency, the composition of the flight, and so forth. Upon arrival near the target, our formation order: I would be number three, and the chief of the formation, number one. Each pilot would have to approach the target from a different direction. The choice of which would be left to [unclear].
“While moving toward the target, we stumbled over a very dense network of fire, a very powerful riposte. A few rockets were seen. Our chief turned to approach the target and I followed him at a distance. At the time when I was preparing to drop my bombs — I did not know whether I could drop them because things were happening too fast — I heard a terrible explosion which shook my plane and sent it toward the group. It was hit so violently that I was thrown on my back and went straight toward the ground in this posture. I tried to pull the direction-stick ??? …
??? … Naturally I felt buffetting because my bailing out was made at the time when the plane was falling too fast. When the parachute opened I looked down and found out that I was going to fall into a lake. I was really lucky to be able to fall into a lake. All around me bombs were exploding while rockets and antiaircraft shells were streaking through the sky. I hit the lake and went to the bottom. While trying to return to the surface, I was seized by Vietnamese and pushed to the bank of the lake. They disarmed me and brought me to prison.”
(What do you think of Hanoi’s Fire Barrage?)
“Very intense, very accurate. When a fire barrage is so accurate, one has to reckon with it. You are excellent artillerymen. Naturally, I have never seen such a fire network because it was the first time that I flew over Hanoi.”
(Were all the pilots who had flown over Hanoi afraid of the Firepower from the ground?)
“Yes, Certainly! How lucky are those who do not have to come often to the Hanoi sector. Very dangerous! Because they could very well be shot down, hit, something that no one wants! When I arrived near my target I saw two rockets streaking by my side, and it was terrible to see. They flew very fast, very strongly.
“For me, there is no longer any doubt. Things are taking place in a favorable opinion. The United States at present seems to be standing alone, so much is its isolation.”
***I wish I could say that was it. I don’t like John McCain, but as a veteran it sickens me nevertheless just to read propaganda that a member of the United States Armed Forces gave to the enemy.***
This next bit of propaganda from John McCain needs a bit a background. On May 19th, 1969, Secretary of Defense Melvin Laird demanded the North Vietnamese treat POWs according to humanitarian standards established in the Geneva Conventions. Senator McCain will be the first to tell you that wasn’t the case… although that wasn’t what he said in an interview the North Vietnamese broadcast into South Vietnam…***
Broadcast to South Vietnam, 2 June 1969
At his 19 rpt 19 May press conference in Washington, US Defense Secretary Melvin Laird distorted the truth about the policy of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam government towards captured U.S. pilots in North Vietnam. Those very captive airmen have long since given the lie to Laird’s allegations. Here is one of them, LCMDR John Sidney McCain, service number 624787 rpt 624787, USS Oriskany, speaking of the treatment he has been receiving.
“I was a U.S. airman engaged in the crimes against the Vietnamese country and people. I had bombed their cities, towns, and villages and caused more injury even death for the people of Vietnam. After I was captured I was taken from a hospital in (?Da Nang) where I received very good medical treatment. I was given an operation on my leg, which allowed me to walk again, and a cast for my right arm which was badly broken in three rpt three places. The doctors were very good and they knew a great deal about the practice of medicine. I remained in the hospital for some time, I regained much of my health and strength.”
***Funny, this sounds exactly like the same propaganda that John Kerry gave the North Vietnamese!!! The circumstances were a little bit different, but the fact that McCain uttered the words is disgusting. I know POWs have it hard, but there is a Code of Conduct for POWs and we were expected to conduct themselves according to that code if we were captured. This is a HUGE deal. He didn’t slip up once, he did it repeatedly through his stay in Hanoi.***
***Including the final declassified document from the Department of Defense…***
Dr. Fernando Barral for Cuban media, January 24, 1970
The pilot interviewed is John Sidney McCain, son and grandson of American Navy Admirals. His father, as the Yankee prisoner declared, is higher ranking than General Abrams, who commands the Yankee aggressor troops in South Vietnam; despite this, Johnson gave orders directly to Abrams, passing over McCain’s father, who has a long history of services of aggression in Korea, among other imperialist merits. As is seen, Lt Commander John Sidney has a very good name….
Following are the notes from Dr. Barral’s interview with the Yankee Pilot:
(Could you tell me your name, serial number, and rank?)
“My name is John Sidney McCain and I am a lieutenant commander in the U.S. Navy — serial No 624787. I understand and speak some Spanish. I studied it in school and I have been in Spain several times. On one of those occasions I visited the Navy Academy and met Prince Carlos….”
In the course of the interview, on various occasions he showed that knowledge of the language, saying some words, dates, and so forth in Spanish, or (using it) when he thought the interpreter was seeking the corresponding French word.
Naturally, from the very beginning this established a more direct communication between us, and more than one question or my response was made directly in Spanish.
(Immediately afterward, I asked him about the date and circumstances of his capture.)
“On 26 October 1967 I was overflying Hanoi in an A4E plane based on the carrier Oriskany when my plane was hit by a ground-to-air missile. I bailed out, colliding in the air with the remains of the plane, and I landed in one of the lakes in the center of Hanoi, in the middle of the water. On landing I tried to get free of my parachute, but could not move, and did not realize why I could not move my arms or legs, but it was because of the injuries.”
“Yes, as a result of colliding with the remains of the plane, I fractured my right leg at the knee, and both arms, the right one in three places. Moreover, I dislocated both shoulders.”
(What happened next? That is, what was the capture itself like?)
“Well, many people gathered around since it was the center of Hanoi and at midday.”
(Soldiers, militiamen, or civilians?)
“I could not determine exactly, because they had removed their clothing in order to take me out of the water.”
(Well, go on.)
“From there, they took me to a military hospital in Hanoi, a large hospital where they operated on me and attended to the multiple fractures. I understand I received more than a liter of blood….”
(Were you the object of any physical or moral violence?)
“No, although at the time of capture I could sense the people’s hate or indignation, there were no insults or violence of any type. On the contrary, you have seen how I am recovering from my injuries.”
(But were you not afraid of being the object of violent treatment if you were captured…?)
“Actually, I never thought I would become a prisoner; therefore those fears never came up.”
(Did you never think of the possibility of being captured?)
“No. I was traveling at high altitude. I felt completely safe in the plane.. I am considered one of the best pilots….”
(?? What made you join the U.S. Navy? [*difficult to read*])
“[There was a] family reason since I have many relatives in that branch of service. In particular, my grandfather was [difficult to read] -nding in World War II; he was one of those who [saw] the Japanese sign the act of surrender, and a Naval destroyer bears his name. And my father is also an Admiral; he is Chief of the Pacific Command of the U.S. Armed Forces. Actually, it is a matter of military tradition. Once of my forebears was a colonel in Washington’s independence forces. Another was a general in the war of secession. Thus it was natural for me to follow a military career. Of course my father was not always an admiral; during World War II he was a commander of a submarine. He has been in the Navy since 1927 and has been an admiral since 1965. He holds the highest rank in the Navy. If I had not been downed, I would have become an Admiral at an earlier age than my father. Theoretically, General Abrams is his subordinate….”
“Yes, although in practice, because of the importance of this war, Gen. Creighton Abrams receives his orders directly from Washington.”
(I do not understand this about “in theory and in practice.” I thought that in military life everything is standardized in an inflexible manner….)
“Well, look, in fact Abrams is his subordinate but since the Tet offensive of 1968 in view of the gravity of the situation, Abrams instead of asking for instructions from my father, who is in Honolulu, so that he in turn would ask for them from Washington, went directly to Washington for them because the war is here in Vietnam and my father also has Okinawa, Korea, and so forth under his command. That is why, since the war is so important, he receives his instructions directly from Washington. It is a political problem also, not only military.”
(Well, let us leave these things about political and military aside. They are too complex. At any rate I do not believe that your father likes the situation very much; that his subordinates receive orders directly from above.)
“Look, my father is a very intelligent person, but… when the bombings of the north began, Johnson asked Abrams’ opinion, not my father’s because Abrams [is] in Saigon, in the war….”
“Now I am going to speak about my wife,” he says spontaneously, “she is not in the armed forces,” he added with a certain humor. “I saw her the last time in August of 1967. At that time I was on the aircraft carrier Forrestal when I fire broke out wich damaged it heavily and it had to be sent for repairs to the United States. At that time I miraculously escaped with my life because I was in my airplane and the two pilots on my left and the two on my right were killed.”
(How did that happen?)
“A plane caught fire and one of its rockets went off. This in turn caused other explosions. There were 135 deaths, almost all the airplanes were destroyed and the ship was seriously damaged. As a result of the fire I became famous on TV.”
(As one who miraculously escaped death, no?)
“Yes, but in addition I was able to see my family and stay there nearly a month. I then returned this time to the aircraft carrier Oriskany and 1 month later I was shot down.”
(You said that you were going to talk to me about your wife bout you continue on the subject of the war….)
… “She is very pretty. Before marrying me she was a model for magazines and on TV. We have a 3-year-old girl. When I saw her she was still a baby. She also has two children from a former marriage. She now returned to work as a model on TV.”
(How did you find out?)
“I had a letter from her after I became a prisoner.”
“Yes they authorized me to recieve a letter and presents on Christmas Eve and I was able to send greeting cards.”
(Would you like me to relay a message for you?)
“If you would be so kind. Tell her I am well, that I wish her happiness, and not to worry about me.”
“Her namy is Carol McCain, Mrs. Carol McCain. She lives in….”
[McCain has to write her address with his left hand because the Spanish speaking interviewer can't understand... 553 Patio Lane, Orange Park, Florida, USA]
(What schooling did you have?)
I went to the Naval Academy. I took two university majors, electrical engineering and naval architecture. The courses were very difficult; 1,200 of us began and only 400 graduated. Discipline was very strict also. I was also in the Spanish Naval Academy. It was there that I met Prince Carlos, as I said before. When I finished I had two choices; to be a naval officer or a pilot.. I chose to be a pilot. I had to study another year and a half and I graduated in 1958. I trained intensively. I flew many hours in training to become a jet pilot.”
“Yes, 4,000. They really demand 200 but I flew 4,000 hours.”
“I wanted to become a test pilot. It is fascinating to test new models.”
(At any rate the difference between 200 and 4,000 appears to be great.)
“Well, look, it was because I wanted to be an astronaut. That is why I also engage in a great deal of sports: boxing wrestling, swimming, camping, and so forth.”
(And what happened?)
“I had to come to Vietnam.”
(What is your religion?)
“I am a Protestant.”
(Being in captivity, has your faith increased? Do you have hopes for the future?)
“My beliefs have always been more or less the same intensity. As long as the war lasts I do not have much hope for the future.”
A photograph from this interview.
***You know, this is really frustrating to me because of all the information he gave away. Training requirements, his training experience, the exact model aircraft he was flying, giving new talking points to the Communists about his father being passed over, and while I doubt this is the entire transcript of the interview (McCain supposedly drank 3 cups of coffee… this is a 1 cup conversation), gave detailed information on damage and casualties in a military accident, and so much more that it’s inexcusable that he gave away that much information.
He’s even bluntly honest about the reason why he liked his wife (she was a model before the crippling car accident, prompting him to seek out an extramarital affair with Cindy).
Look, I understand that the pressures of being a POW in Vietnam are ungodly. But there is a Code of Conduct for a reason and this is specifically it. If you’re going to divulge information, it better come after years of torture so it’s no longer relevant and John McCain couldn’t even last 2 weeks.
It’s no wonder McCain was so quiet when those British sailors got picked up by the Iranians and they made propaganda films for Iran. Because he did the exact same thing.
No, I was never a POW, thank GOD! But the reason I’m so livid about this is because had I been in this situation, I and every single other person who has served or is serving now is expected to live up to the standards established by the Code of Conduct and John McCain, the man our party has nominated to be the President of the United States, FAILED MISERABLY.
When recruits go through Basic Training, they should be required to read and memorize these documents because this is the perfect example of what NOT to do if you’re ever taken prisoner.***