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Hannity

POWs Speak Out on Kerry's Testimony

This is a partial transcript from "Hannity & Colmes," Sept. 8, 2004, that has been edited for clarity.

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ALAN COLMES, CO-HOST: Some Vietnam POWs are angry with Senator Kerry at the charges he made during his testimony to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in 1971 have made a documentary film called "Stolen Honor."

Take a look.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We stayed two more years because of him. John Kerry, Jane Fonda and all that crowd, the antiwar movement. I figure they owe us two years.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

COLMES: Joining us now, one of the POWs seen in that film, Paul Galanti, and the producer of the film, Carlton Sherwood.

Good to have you both with us. You're both veterans, and thank you both for serving. It's troubling to me and maybe to many Americans to see veterans fighting with each other, Mr. Galanti.

You know, what are we to believe? I mean, some veterans agree with you and some don't. Go ahead.

PAUL GALANTI, VIETNAM POW: Yes, of course, people are different. In a great country, you can be like that. There are differences and it's like Senator Kerry served and President Bush served. And the only difference is President Bush didn't commit treason when he was serving.

COLMES: That's quite a charge, sir. That's really an extraordinary charge to sit there and charge John Kerry with treason. If you feel he was treasonous, why was he not charged with that and convicted? You're making quite an astounding charge.

GALANTI: It's true. Aiding and abetting the enemy in a time of war. He was still in the Navy. I'm not sure why they didn't do it. I suspect it was for political reasons, but because of all the stuff he did, we stayed in North Vietnam for an extra couple of years.

COLMES: Well, it's quite a charge you're making. He was not charged with treason. He was not convicted of treason. And you're accusing him of committing a crime and that's never happened.

GALANTI: The enemy loved him, Alan. And the enemy loves you, you're on their side. And when that happens, in other wars that was considered treason.

The whole world got turned upside-down and Aldus Huxley's "Brave New World" came out. We started Newspeak in the '60s and '70s. Fortunately, I got to miss that part of it.

COLMES: Mr. Sherwood, you know, there's a great discontent when these attacks took place on John McCain and you're attacking fellow veterans.

And this is a race between somebody who volunteered to serve in Vietnam, did two tours of duty, won a bunch of awards, and somebody who specifically said wished not to be sent overseas on his National Guard applications and there are questions about that we'll talk about later.

Is that the fight we should be having in this campaign?

CARLTON SHERWOOD, PRODUCER, "STOLEN HONOR": Well, Alan, first of all, I don't think President Bush brought up Vietnam. I think John Kerry has made it the cornerstone, the foundation of his entire career. And certainly, has made that the foundation of his race for the president.

Let me finish now. He brought this subject up.

These men have remained silent for over 35 years, as have many Vietnam combat veterans. This is their moment to say their peace, to say what's been sticking in their craw for 35 years.

And look, what John Kerry did in 1971, he didn't just vilify all of us who served in Vietnam, especially those in combat positions who bore the brunt of the death and the suffering, but what he did is he jeopardized — in 1971, we had several hundred POWs still being held, men who were brutally tortured, brutally tortured. And they were still being held there. And John Kerry labeled all of them war criminals.

SEAN HANNITY, CO-HOST: Carlton, I want to run through this if I can, because I don't have a lot of time.

Paul, just for our audience's benefit, you come from a service family. You graduated from the naval academy in '62. Correct me if I'm wrong, you went to flight training in Pensacola. You flew 97 combat missions. You were captured June 17, 1966 and you were a prisoner of war nearly seven years, correct?

GALANTI: Yes, sir.

HANNITY: And you first heard the testimony of Kerry when?

GALANTI: In 1971 sometime. We were in a big room, room three of the Hanoi Hilton prison and I just remember hearing Hanoi Hanna come on and talk about an American naval officer admitting to atrocities and war crimes and saying that it was policy and we all did it.

I was walking around the room when that happened and I stopped and looked up at the speaker and looked around and my cellmates were all just sort of shaking their heads, wondering where this was coming from.

COLMES: Mr. Galanti and Mr. Sherwood, we thank you both very many for being with us tonight.

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