Seriously, Ann Coulter is a Liar

Y’know why Ann Coulter called her book Slander? Because if she’d gone as far as to call in Libel it might have hit a bit too close to home.

A few years ago Coulter decided to attack Democrat and Vietnam Veteran, Max Cleland. Since he’s not on her side politically, then surely anything goes in tearing him apart… including calling into question his injuries sustained in Vietnam. You see, in Coulterland it’s perfectly acceptable NOT to support the troops, providing they disagree with you.

I decided against commenting about her when she actually said it, as what she said was horribly tactless, ridiculously overblown and dreadfully Coulter-esque. However, today I noticed that she’s decided to bring it up again. This is the exact text taken from her website:

Then we learned Cleland was a victim only of his own clumsiness and had dropped the grenade on himself in Vietnam after stopping for a beer.

First let me begin with what’s obviously wrong with that statement. No account of Cleland’s injury, not even the one Coulter quotes herself, suggest that he was injured “after stopping for a beer.” This, along with the carefully chosen use of the word “clumsiness” implies to the casual reader that Cleland was intoxicated after having a drink and accidentally injured himself with a grenade. That, my friends, is the definition of manipulative language, and as far as I’m concerned, a case for libel.

Note: This is NOT taken out of context, click right here to read the entire article.

Where did Ann get her information? Well, here’s the text she used on her own site to defend her allegations, taken from her own site (see this link to read it, I want to make sure that all of my facts are presented):

“Finally, the battle at Khe Sanh was over. Cleland, 25 years old, and two members of his team were now ordered to set up a radio relay station at the division assembly area, 15 miles away. The three gathered antennas, radios and a generator and made the 15-minute helicopter trip east. After unloading the equipment, Cleland climbed back into the helicopter for the ride back. But at the last minute, he decided to stay and have a beer with some friends. As the helicopter was lifting off, he shouted to the pilot that he was staying behind and jumped several feet to the ground.

“Cleland hunched over to avoid the whirring blades and ran. Turning to face the helicopter, he caught sight of a grenade on the ground where the chopper had perched. It must be mine, he thought, moving toward it. He reached for it with his right arm just as it exploded, slamming him back and irreparably altering his plans for a bright, shining future.”

Now, I ask Coulter apologists to explain to me how staying behind to have a beer, seeing a grenade on the ground, picking it up and permanently injuring yourself (the exact information on which she based her claim) can turn into “…Cleland was a victim only of his own clumsiness and had dropped the grenade on himself in Vietnam after stopping for a beer.”

That’s a lie.

Plain and simple.

Unfortunately, it’s a trend among too many conservatives in this country. I’m not calling out all conservatives by any stretch of the imagination. Most right-wingers I know have ultimate respect for military service, no matter which political stripes you wear or what ideology you subscribe to. However, for too many of the “support the troops” banner wavers, it’s just a slogan.

For once I’m not talking about pulling troops out of the war or anything of the sort. I’m talking about respecting people that were injured while in harm’s way, no matter how it may or may not have happened. Frankly, from this point forward I’ve lost all respect for anyone that supports Ann Coulter taking an injured man, whether firebombed by the Vietnamese Army or otherwise, and attempting to craft him into a clumsy drunk. That is simply unacceptable.

That’s the type of political discourse that I’d expect from this woman, who undoubtedly “supports the troops” while making light of one man’s injury while in service.

Quite frankly, I’ve never served in the military (and I’d wager neither has the above woman), which makes it completely impossible for me to mock another man’s service. While I sit on my couch, watching tv, countless young men and women are dodging bullets in a foreign land. And I guarantee to you, whether they’re injured by friendly fire, enemy fire or just a simple accident, I respect and mourn for their loss just the same. Personally, I don’t care whether or not they agree with me, I just hope they’re safe.

But who am I to comment on this, why not let someone that was there when Cleland lost his limbs do the talking for me, for us, and for the at least mildly sane portion of our country:

The 2nd of the 12th Cavalry was engaged in a combat operation at the time of this incident. Max Cleland was with the Battalion Forward Command Post in heavy combat involving the attack of the 1st Cavalry Division up the valley to relieve the Marines who were besieged and surrounded at the Khe Shan Firebase. The whole surrounding area was an active combat zone (some might call the entire country of Vietnam a combat zone). (Is Iraq a combat zone?) Max, the Battalion Signal Officer, was engaged in a combat mission I personally ordered to increase the effectiveness of communications between the battalion combat forward and rear support elements: e.g. Erect a radio relay antenna on a mountain top. By the way, at one point the battalion rear elements came under enemy artillery fire so everyone was in harms way.

As they were getting off the helicopter, Max saw the grenade on the ground and he instinctively went for it. Soldiers in combat don’t leave grenades lying around on the ground. Later, in the hospital, he said he thought it was his own but I doubt the concept of “ownership” went through his mind in the split seconds involved in reaching for the grenade. Nearly two decades later another soldier came forward and admitted it was actually his grenade. Does ownership of the grenade really matter? It does not.

Maury Cralle’
Battalion Executive Officer
2d/12th Cavalry Battalion
1st Air Cavalry Division
During the assault on Khe Shan

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46 Responses to “Seriously, Ann Coulter is a Liar”

  1. shane Says:

    I received an email from Kevin telling me to be sure and read Cory’s blog and that can only mean one thing: Cory has made another anti-Coulter entry and everyone is eager for me to read it and respond so they can make fun of me. Cory and Brinton sit around and feign pity that one of their friends is so misguided as to support such a heartless lunatic (rather than get behind benign down-to-earth pundits like Moore and Maher) and Kevin receives praise for not being one of “those conservatives” who condones the statements of the “heartless lunatic.” Well, I certainly don’t want to let my friends down, so let’s get started.

    First of all, and I mean no offense by this, but I really don’t understand what the point of this entry is. Coulter said in her recent column that Cleland was clumsy -not the word I would have used- and that is how he had his legs and arm blowed off in Vietnam. It is indisputable that Cleland was injured by friendly fire. Either his own grenade or the grenade of a fellow American soldier. He was not, as many on the left claimed in 2004 when Cleland was questioning President Bush’s National Guard service, injured “in combat.” Liberals made that up so that Cleland would seem more of an authority to question Bush’s service. But all of this is old news. Why bring it up now?

    Secondly, Coulter has never said anything even remotely insulting about Cleland unless you count the recent clumsy remark which even I admit is a poor choice of words, but hardly a call for outcry. If one is looking for a less than compassionate account of what happened to Cleland in Vietnam try the Baltimore Sun, Atlanta Journal- Constitution or the Milwuakee Journal Sentinel. All these newspapers did reports on the Cleland incident in 1999 and one even went as far as to say that he was no hero and that the medals he received only embarrassed him. Nothing Coulter has said -recently or in 2004- comes even close to that. Coulter cited the newspapers stories as well as Cleland’s own statements (also implying that he is no war hero) in “How to Talk to a Liberal.” If anyone would like to read it let me know.

    Furthermore, Coulter went on to say that Cleland’s true heroism came after his accident by going on to have productive life.

    I’m not sure what it is about this woman that gets the left so worked up. I guess losing control of every facet of the media combined with the emergence of a pundit who is better than any they have has been quite a jolt.

  2. Cory Says:

    With all due respect to my friend Shane, I’d like to make the following points. (And I must say that, despite being taken in by the dark side, I count Shane among my closest and best friends… all Coulterity aside, I haven’t a single negative thing to say about the guy).

    First of all, I was once a huge Michael Moore fan. I’ll admit it, and although I’m not totally proud of everything he’s done, I still think that the core of his ideas is relevant. Just like Coulter, Moore is quite adept at twisting the truth to prove a point. Now, let me also admit that when Michael Moore twists the truth to fit his point I find it considerably easier to stomach… as my points are often right in line with his (although not always). As for Bill Maher, he’s just a comedian. He’s very funny, but as he is an avowed libertarian, I certainly don’t agree with everything that comes out of his mouth.

    Most importantly, I want to point out why I wrote this. The “clumsy” quote (attributed to being AFTER having a beer) appeared in Ann Coulter’s most recent column. If it’s old news, as you say, then she’s guilty of dredging up the past, not me. Coulter decided to take yet another cheap shot at an injured veteran (no matter how he came to become injured) for no reason other than to shock and titilate the political spectrum that loves to accuse the left wing of being inept, weak soldiers… at best. As Cleland hasn’t been in the news for quite some time, bringing this situation up (for at least the third time, although I’m sure there are more) was not only pointless on her part, but needlessly cruel. Suggesting (slyly, as she does) that he may have been intoxicated and clumsy as a result of said intoxication is thoroughly disgusting.

    Going back to what newspapers printed in 1999 or Ann’s most recent book has nothing to do with the statement at hand. A statement in which she intentionally twisted her language to suggest that a man who served his country bravely may have just dropped a grenade after a few drinks. Cleland himself has said that he was no war hero, and despite what some opportunists on the left may have said during various campaigns, the door of opportunity to further drag his name through the mud is not permanently propped open.

    If it’s such old news, then I’d suggest forwarding that comment to Ms. Coulter herself. Unless she needs to fill a few paragraphs in the future, when she will undoubtedly bring up the horrific crimes of Grover Cleveland… as clearly all Democrats are monsters.

  3. Jefffffffff Says:

    Oh for the love of… CAN’T WE ALL JES’ GET ALONG?!

  4. edtajchman Says:

    I agree she is full of sh**, … but doesn’t articles like this (even has well written has it is) play right into her hands and gives her what she wants… a reaction? I say forget about her and focus on something positive…

  5. Catherine Morgan Says:

    Ann Coulter INFURIATES me. These are some recent posts I have done on my political blog after she has “somehow” gotten under my skin…

    http://informedvoters.wordpress.com/?s=ann+coulter

  6. januarys Says:

    I don’t have the attention span to read an essay about why Ann Coulter is a lunatic. But that’s not who I’m here to defend. I’m sure it’s not fair to use the picture of the poor lil ole Dubya supporter to help illustrate the point. I doubt that woman ever wrote an entire book full of hypocritical rhetoric, and she looks like less of a redneck than Coulter, so leave her out of it, she;s probably somebodys mother.

    Clearly I don’t know what I’m talking about and it’s probably a little bit Ambien induced. But my point stands, we as a nation can’t go around using the purple heart bandaid lady every time we’re mad at something republicans are doing.

  7. Cory Says:

    The purple heart band-aid lady, whether or not she’s someone’s mother, represents everything disrespectful and wrong with modern “supporting” of the troops. To talk out of one side of your mouth about your undying support for US servicemen, while wearing a sticker that openly mocks the award handed out to the combat wounded isn’t just hypocritical, it’s abhorrent.

    I assure you that the majority of purple heart recipients didn’t find it funny.

    And so, for her disrespect, I say she’s open season. I don’t care if you’re a mother or not… hell, Hitler had a mother.

  8. januarys Says:

    Oh. I thought she had the purple heart drawn on there for fun. Seriously. I didn’t think it was some kind of mocking statement.

    I don’t know if she can hold as much ethos as you are saying. But she definitely represents everything wrong with “not supporting skin care.”

    ZING! Oh yeah! I just zinged Hitler’s mom. BOO YAH!

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