Gold Star Mom Blasts Kerry's Middle East Trip

By Jim Kouri

A Gold Star Mother is urging American troops to snub Sen. John Kerry during his visit to Iraq.
"I'm asking our men and women in Iraq to not allow themselves to be forced to pose with Kerry during his photo ops,"
said Debra Bastian, who lost her son in Iraq in 2005.

"This man is a disgrace. He should be shunned by those serving in Iraq. He is not their friend. They [the soldiers] should not be forced to pose for pictures with Kerry the way they did when Sen. Hillary Clinton visited Iraq,"
she said.

The Massachusets senator is in the Middle East reportedly to meet with the presidents of Iran and Syria. While visiting Egypt, he also took a number of swipes at President Bush and his Middle East policy.

While in Egypt, critics say Kerry pandered to hatred for Israel in order to score points with the Egyptians.

"Kerry hasn't changed from his days as a anti-war protester who spouted lies against his fellow soldiers,"
said the angry Bastian.

While Kerry's office says he fulfilling his constitutional duty to actively participate in foreign policy, many in Washington believe his trip is meant to hurt the Bush Administration and to increase his sagging poll numbers in another bid for the Democrat Party presidential nomination. To some observers, Kerry Middle East trip is reminiscent of his trip to meet with North Vietnamese officials in Paris in the midst of the Vietnam War.

"Kerry knows he's being ignored with all the buzz about [Sen. Barack] Obama and [Sen.] Hillary Clinton. The last poll showed him garning only 7 percent of likely Democrat voters,"
said political analyst Mike Baker.

"Add Kerry's propensity for denigrating his country during time of war and you have the John Kerry portrayed by the Swift Boat Vets for Truth during his failed presidential campaign,"
he said.

"My son is a true war hero. Kerry claims he's a war hero because of a broken fingernail for which he got a Purple Heart,"
said Bastian.

Bastian and other Gold Star Mothers recently visited Iraq to show their support for US troops. However, the news media ignored their trip and none were interviewed by reporters.

�The American people are shown a skewed picture of the situation in Iraq day after day by the international news media. We felt it was time to allow the families of US troops who died in Iraq to come see the progress being made in Iraq and report it back to the American people,�
said Melanie Morgan, Chairman of Move America Forward, an organization that helps and supports families of fallen soldiers.

The trip also occured following statements by Senator John Kerry, who suggested U.S. Troops serving in Iraq lack intelligence and are �stuck� there because of their limited abilities.

�I am spitting mad at John Kerry for insulting our troops. Duck and run was his specialty in Viet Nam,�
said Gold Star Mother Deborah Argel.

National Review's Michael Rubin said,
"John Kerry is in Egypt, and is praising Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak�s wisdom. What Kerry is not doing is speaking up for imprisoned dissidents victimized by Mubarak�s crackdown."

"What does he think Egyptians feel when they hear Kerry saying that Bush should have listened more to Mubarak, whose domestic popularity make Bush look like Mr. Universe? Kerry stood up for Mubarak�s 2002 support for Saddam,"
said Rubin.

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