John Kerry: 1971 vs. 2013

In 1971, John Kerry was at the center of one of the great anti-war demonstrations in American history.  His testimony before Congress was a crucial element in turning public opinion against the war in Vietnam. 

On Friday afternoon, Kerry was again giving a much-watched public speech in Washington, D.C.  But the one-time "winter soldier" who was willing to straight-talk Congress about the bloody quagmire in Southeast Asia has changed his tune about America's role in international conflicts. 

Here's three side-by-side comparisons of Kerry in 1971 vs. Kerry in 2013: 

In 1971, Kerry said America's involvement in Vietnam was never about national security: 

"In our opinion, and from our experience, there is nothing in South Vietnam, nothing which could happen that realistically threatens the United States of America. And to attempt to justify the loss of one American life in Vietnam, Cambodia, or Laos by linking such loss to the preservation of freedom, which those misfits supposedly abuse is to us the height of criminal hypocrisy, and it is that kind of hypocrisy which we feel has torn this country apart." 

In 2013, Kerry said America's involvement in Syria was about national security: 

"It matters deeply to the credibility and the future interests of the United States of America and our allies.... And make no mistake, in an increasingly complicated world of sectarian and religious extremist violence, what we choose to do or not do matters in real ways to our own security." 

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