Fake Patriots Like McCain vs Muhammad Ali


A reader asked: "What's your military record?" Here's my answer.

Mish's Military Record

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I have no military record. If drafted, I would have refused to go. I am damn proud of my record of not killing innocent people simply because my government demanded it.

I admire anyone brave enough and smart enough to go to prison rather than kill innocent people for no reason.

Unlike Ali, I was never put to the test. My number never came up. But I assure you, I would not have gone to Vietnam.

Had enough people had the same moral conviction, the Vietnam War would have ended sooner. The war finally did end when enough people realized how stupid it was and demanded change.

Wikipedia offers this reflection on Muhammad Ali.

> In 1966, two years after winning the heavyweight title, Ali further antagonized the white establishment by refusing to be drafted into the U.S. military, citing his religious beliefs and opposition to American involvement in the Vietnam War. He was eventually arrested, found guilty of draft evasion charges, and stripped of his boxing titles. He successfully appealed the decision to the U.S. Supreme Court, which overturned his conviction in 1971, by which time he had not fought for nearly four years and thereby lost a period of peak performance as an athlete. Ali's actions as a conscientious objector to the war made him an icon for the larger counterculture generation.

America Needs the Muhammad Ali Doctrine

Foreign Policy Magazine writes America Needs the Muhammad Ali Doctrine.

> Has any country ever spent as much money, time, and effort fighting to control places as irrelevant to the long-term balance of power as Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia, or Yemen, not to mention its recent actions in Libya and in various parts of sub-Saharan Africa? The United States has little to show for these efforts—in some cases, indeed, things have gotten worse—even as infrastructure back home keeps decaying, social problems multiply, and political divisions inside the country deepen. It’s worth remembering that this sort of response is precisely what Osama bin Laden hoped to provoke by attacking the United States on Sept. 11, 2001. He probably underestimated America’s fragility, but there’s little doubt that the reaction to 9/11 did more harm to the United States than the attacks themselves.

> Meanwhile, while the United States has been squandering wealth and attention in distant lands, China has been following the playbook that America used in its earlier rise to world power: stay out of trouble abroad and build a world-class economy at home. Beijing still faces many challenges—as Michael Beckley makes clear in a terrific new book—but it has maximized its prospects by not trying to run the world and by not trying to do nation-building in places that are far from China both geographically and politically.

> The lesson, in short, is that great powers can often advance their own interests and long-term power position by letting rivals take on high-cost, low-benefit projects that distract and divert them and drain their resources. In short, they do the rope-a-dope, or what John Mearsheimer calls a “bait and bleed” strategy, trying to lure rivals into costly and unwinnable conflicts while they remain aloof.


Foreign Policy is correct, of course. But it does not go far enough in its criticisms of McCain.

Fake Patriots

Patriotism is not about fighting stupid wars and killing innocent men, women, and children simply because a government asks you to do so.

Please recall the Nuremberg Trials.

It was as "patriotic" to kill Vietnamese as it was "patriotic" to kill Jews simply because you were ordered to do so.


Warmonger advocates will inaccurately compare me to Chamberlain.

But where was "Hitler" in Vietnam, in Iraq, in Libya, in Syria?

The answer is nowhere. Hussein killed political opponents. He had no desire to conquer the world.

Hussein was no saint, but he led a secular government. There was freedom of religion in Iraq. There isn't today.

Idiotic US policy, that McCain supported, directly led to the creation of Isis.

It's the Oil, Stupid

If there was no oil in the Mideast, we would not be there at all. Many countries in Africa have worse things going on.

Heck, the US even gave Hussein his chemical weapons. There are images and videos of former secretary of defense Rumsfeld shaking hands with Hussein.

In a declassified document Rumsfeld 'offered help to Saddam'.

> On November 1 1983, the secretary of state, George Shultz, was passed intelligence reports of "almost daily use of CW [chemical weapons]" by Iraq.

> However, 25 days later, Ronald Reagan signed a secret order instructing the administration to do "whatever was necessary and legal" to prevent Iraq losing the war.

> Howard Teicher, an Iraq specialist in the Reagan White House, testified in a 1995 affidavit that the then CIA director, William Casey, used a Chilean firm, Cardoen, to send cluster bombs to use against Iran's "human wave" attacks.

> A 1994 congressional inquiry also found that dozens of biological agents, including various strains of anthrax, had been shipped to Iraq by US companies, under licence from the commerce department.

> Furthermore, in 1988, the Dow Chemical company sold $1.5m-worth (£930,000) of pesticides to Iraq despite suspicions they would be used for chemical warfare.

Other Side of McCain

Consortium News offers what I view as a "must read" take on The Other Side of John McCain by Max Blumenthal.

> In Libya and Syria, McCain cultivated affiliates of Al Qaeda as allies, and in Ukraine, McCain courted actual, sig-heiling neo-Nazis.

> While McCain’s Senate office functioned as a clubhouse for arms industry lobbyists and neocon operatives, his fascistic allies waged a campaign of human devastation that will continue until long after the flowers dry up on his grave.

> American media may have sought to bury this legacy with the senator’s body, but it is what much of the outside world will remember him for.

McCain With Al Qaeda

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McCain with FSA

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McCain in Ukraine

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Coddling the Neo-Nazis of Ukraine

> On December 14, 2013, McCain materialized in Kiev for a meeting with Oleh Tyanhbok, an unreconstructed fascist who had emerged as a top opposition leader. Tyanhbok had co-founded the fascist Social-National Party, a far-right political outfit that touted itself as the “last hope of the white race, of humankind as such.” No fan of Jews, he had complained that a “Muscovite-Jewish mafia” had taken control of his country, and had been photographed throwing up a sieg heil Nazi salute during a speech.

> McCain was so committed to replacing an independent-minded government with a NATO vassal that he even mulled a military assault on Kiev. “I do not see a military option and that is tragic,” McCain lamented in an interview about the crisis.

Max Blumenthal is an award-winning journalist and the author of books including best-selling Republican Gomorrah: Inside the Movement That Shattered the Party, Goliath: Life and Loathing in Greater Israel, The Fifty One Day War: Ruin and Resistance in Gaza, and The Management of Savagery, which will be published later this year by Verso. He has also produced numerous print articles for an array of publications, many video reports and several documentaries including Je Ne Suis Pas Charlie and the forthcoming Killing Gaza.

Running and Screaming

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Patriotism? Where?

You can support torture, drones, Iraq, Vietnam, and anything else on grounds of patriotism.

On the same grounds, you may as well support killing Jews or "Gooks" as McCain called the North Vietnamese.

But I won't.

I praise Muhammad Ali, a man of conviction, integrity, and a man willing to tell his government to go to hell, on that basis of higher principles.

That's true patriotism.

Killing innocent people simply because your government orders you to do so, isn't.

But McCain went well beyond following orders. He openly sought ties with neo-Nazis and Al Qaeda groups.

Piss vs Praise

If you seek someone worthy of praise, try Ali. McCain was a despicable human being deserving ridicule and scorn.

Related Articles

  1. McCain's "Legacy" Lives On: What "Legacy" Is That?
  2. Best Way to Say Farewell to McCain: Piss on His Grave

Mike "Mish" Shedlock

Comments (29)
No. 1-13

My thoughts precisely.




I pay my taxes and have obeyed all laws, although I have been fortunate that I have not been asked to obey ones I would deem morally dubious. I think that is all the "service" that should be expected of a citizen. I respect anyone who has served in the military and their obvious commitment to our country, but putting them in harms way for little or no purpose hardly brings glory to their service. Do we need more wars to provide more people with opportunities for this type of service? I certainly don't think so. I also detest the idea that not having served in the military precludes you from expressing an opinion about the use of America's military in other countries.


Awesome post Mish!!


"I have no military record. If drafted, I would have refused to go. I am damn proud of my record of not killing innocent people simply because my government demanded it."

You are too intelligent to make such a broad statement. The US military protects American interests all the time (e.g. WWII, Cuban crisis.) We would have been under the Nazi today had everyone acted selfishly/foolishly in WWII.


Down goes Frazier! Down goes Frazier!


Most people still dont know the half of it, and McCain still kept getting re-elected, which tells the story of why we are where we are. The establishment always protects the establishment.

John McCain Also Sought to use IRS to engage in "financially ruinous" Audits of Opponents | Armstrong Economics
John McCain Also Sought to use IRS to engage in "financially ruinous" Audits of Opponents | Armstrong Economics

Some people have asked if it was the Obama Administration that used the IRS against its enemies. I am not Republican or Democrat and have stated countless times that I see no difference between them behind the curtain when it comes to maintaining power. Judicial Watch reported on documents it received showing that Republicans, as well as Democrats, approved of the IRS's political targeting of American citizens. Yes, the Obama Administration targeted the Tea Party because they began this movement to Drain the Swamp. I believe that Boehner was supporting that effort because he could not "deliver" the Republican vote in Congress because the Tea Party member of Congress wanted reform. More details leaked-out about how widespread the abuse of the IRS after the Lerner affair. Ultimately, the IRS formally admitted to ill-treatment of "36 Tea Party and other conservative organizations from 20 states that applied for 501(c)(3) and (c)(4) tax-exempt status" during Obama's first four years in office. During that time, the agency subjected "those applications to heightened scrutiny and inordinate delays,'" and demanded, "'information that TIGTA determined was unnecessary to the agency's determination of their tax-exempt status." The Judicial Watch obtained IRS Documents that revealed John McCain's Subcommittee Staff Director urged IRS to engage in "the solution is to audit so many that it becomes financially ruinous." So here we have a Republican, John McCain, abusing the power of the IRS for the same ends. And people are shocked McCain did not want Trump to speak at his funeral?

Why is Former Ambassador Refusing to be Questioned by Russians? | Armstrong Economics
Why is Former Ambassador Refusing to be Questioned by Russians? | Armstrong Economics

John McCain is one politician I have no respect for whatsoever. My opinion of him was formed before his war against Trump. His background many have viewed as a real traitor who sought to save himself compared to Snowden all the way to being of highly questionable character given he was responsible for the death of so many sailors. I find it terribly coincidental that McCain sponsored the Magnitsky Act which lies as a central piece of the attempt to take over Russia by the New York bankers trying to control the commodity markets. I cannot say it any plainer - Magnitsky was Browder's accountant. He was NOT a lawyer. That spin by Browder raises a lot of red flags by itself. Putin gave a list of 11 Americans the Russians want to interrogate. On the list was Michael McFaul who was U.S. ambassador to Russia during the Obama administration. McFaul told NPR that there were "dangerous consequences of allowing us to be called criminals in Russian courts." The Senate voted 98-0 in a nonbinding resolution, opposing allowing people such as yourself to be interviewed by Russia. It seems that ONLY law in the USA counts and nobody else. The US can indict Russians but America will prevent its officials from being even questioned. McFaul says this is crazy and absurd. Then face the questions if there is nothing to it at all. Let the interrogation take place and made public. As Shakespear once wrote in Hamlet: "The lady doth protest too much, methinks" It is beginning to look like just maybe Trump did not prevent the indictment of Russians and invited it to open the door to the Russian scandal. This may get interesting yet. Trump has postponed any meeting with Putin in the USA until he says the "Russia witch hunt" is over. John McCain has done his best to keep POW information secret. In 1989, legislation began in the House of Representatives known as Truth Bill 1989 which would have compelled the complete transparency regarding all POWs and missing men from Vietnam. It included: " head of each department or agency which holds or receives any records and information, including live-sighting reports, which have been correlated or possibly correlated to United States personnel listed as prisoner of war or missing in action from World War II, the Korean conflict and the Vietnam conflict, shall make available to the public all such records held or received by that department or agency." John McCain opposed this bill with the Pentagon. He created his own legislation that restricted the number of documents to be released on POWs, which became known as the McCain Bill. This is what became law in 1991. It destroyed any access to the truth. Later, John McCain stuck is fingers in the Missing Service Personnel Act, which had been revised in 1995 by families demanding to know what happened to their missing POWs. The Act stated: "Any government official who knowingly and willfully withholds from the file of a missing person any information relating to the disappearance or whereabouts and status of a missing person shall be fined as provided in Title 18 or imprisoned not more than one year or both." A year later, in a closed House-Senate conference on an unrelated military bill, John McCain, attached an amendment to the act that eliminated any such enforcement removing all criminal penalties while deliberately reducing the obligations of commanders to report on their men who were POWs or missing to the Pentagon. It was McCain who blocked the families from knowing what happened to their missing loved ones. Meanwhile, I do not believe that anyone has ever seen the full transcript of what John McCain said for the Vietnamese. The Pentagon has a copy of the confession but refuses to release it thanks to John McCain's legislation that was self-serving. Pentagon Refuses to Release John McCain Confession There were 173 men left behind. According to sources, they were simply executed by the Vietnamese when they were no longer a bargaining chip. There are other POWs who have come out opposing John McCain. Naturally, nobody is given credibility against McCain by the press or Congress. In my own case, they too handed me a script I had to read. However, I refused to ever confess to taking money from my clients. The script I had to read I do not even believe was a crime. I just said I failed to tell my clients that the bank stole the money. The time, was over the weekend from when I discovered it on August 27th and objected verbally and in writing. Of course, that was ignored. So the US government will do the very same tactics of torture. In my case, they would not allow a trial fearing what might be exposed concerning Russia and the banks. If you plead, you are supposed to plead in your own words and the Judge is supposed to make sure you are explaining the truth. None of that took place when you are given a script you have to read that is written by the government. I have been there and know first hand what is torture. I requested medical help and was DENIED being taken to a doctor by TWO judges. I too was thrown into solitary confinement. I was thrown into cells so hot, underwear was too much to wear and then thrown into a cell you could see your breath. You have to accept death to survive. Only then can you beat your captors. They did not beat me but instead, they had an inmate attempt to kill me so I was in a coma for three days. To their shock, I survived. Just to make sure people do not assume this is just made up, here is the evidence that John McCain admitted he confessed as a POW. Back in 1973, John McCain testified before a congressional panel about his time in captivity. He said he was denied medical care, beaten and placed in isolation. Curious, they say a liar who tells his story so many times, he forgets what he said before. In John McCain's bestselling autobiography, Faith of My Fathers, published in 1999 when McCain had his eye on the presidency, he states plainly that he felt bad throughout his captivity because he knew he was being treated more leniently than his fellow POWs, owing to his high-ranking father and thus his propaganda value. Other POWs at the same camp Hoa Lo have bluntly stated that the Vietnamese considered him a prize catch. They even called him the "Crown Prince," which McCain acknowledges in the book. That is not consistent with being tortured. It would only make sense where there was a threat of being tortured and he did whatever they asked as long as they DID NOT torture him. John McCain said he reached his breaking point and wrote a confession for war crimes, according to an official transcript: They wanted a statement saying that I as sorry for the crimes that I had committed against North Vietnamese people and that I was grateful for the treatment that I had received from them. This was the paradox — so many guys were so mistreated to get them to say they were grateful. But this is the Communist way. I held out for four days. Finally, I reached the lowest point of my 5 1/2 years in North Vietnam. I was at the point of suicide because I saw that I was reaching the end of my rope. I said, O.K. I'll write for them. They took me up into one of the interrogation rooms, and for the next 12 hours we wrote and rewrote. The North Vietnamese interrogator, who was pretty stupid, wrote the final confession, and I signed it. It was in their language, and spoke about black crimes and other generalities. It was unacceptable to them. But I felt just terrible about it. I kept saying to myself "Oh, God, I really didn't have a choice." I had learned what we all learned over there." Every man has his breaking point. I had reached mine. Senator McCain appeared on 60 minutes and told Mike Wallace during an interview originally broadcast on October 12th, 1997 and then it was re-broadcast again on June 6th, 1999, that under threat of torture, he publicly issued a "confession" stating he was wrong for fighting for America. The transcript of the 60 Minutes interview from 1997 shows that McCain stated: "I was guilty of war crimes against the Vietnamese people" and "I intentionally bombed women and children," which was the confession his North Vietnamese captors had him read. WALLACE: (Voiceover) People who know McCain well say he can hold a grudge. He also has a legendary temper. But if McCain can be hard on his friends and even harder on his enemies, he can also be very hard on himself. Sen. McCAIN: I made serious, serious mistakes and did things wrong when I was in prison, OK? WALLACE: What did you do wrong in prison? Sen. McCAIN: I wrote a confession. I was guilty of war crimes against the Vietnamese people. I intentionally bombed women and children. WALLACE: And you did it because you were being tortured and you'd reached the end of the line? Sen. McCAIN: Yes. But I should have gone further. I should have — I never believed that I would — that I would break, and I did. :

Every war since WWII has been a fraud, and even WWI was a false flag (Lusitania, and as noted, reparations provide the requisite financial collapse that gave Hitler footing. Even still, the financial blockade of Japan pushed Japan to the point of desperation, and we knew the attack on Pearl Haber was coming, but the excuse to enter war was needed.

McCain is dead. The focus should be on the rest of the swamp that is desperately trying to take down Trump, so they can get back to fraudulent business as usual.

BBC Caught Fabricating News to Start a War | Armstrong Economics
BBC Caught Fabricating News to Start a War | Armstrong Economics

The press has been routinely creating fake news reports to start a war. This is a serious issue for the press is conspiring against the people to create war, sell climate change, and rig elections. This is by no means something new. They taught me in high school history class about how the press started the Spanish-American War by reporting that the Spanish attacked a US ship, which never happened. We have fallen into a cycle of yellow journalism that Pulitzer began. Pulitzer created the Spanish-American War by making up shit to sell newspapers. The famous Pulitzer Prize given by Columbia University is named after the father of yellow journalism – go figure! This is why the press and the Republican elite supported Hillary. They need to rig the game. The most fascinating aspect of war has been the government's consistent lies to the American people to move the nation to war with every single event. This has won them the ability to wage every single war up until Obama's attempt to invade Syria. It did not fly. This was really the beginning of the collapse in public confidence for the peak in government on our 224-Year Cycle of Political Change was 2013 -- the second swearing in of Obama. The sinking of the Lusitania is very disturbing. The U.S. was smuggling arms to Europe on passenger ships, and putting civilian lives in harm's way for political reasons. The Germans even took an advertisement in the NY newspapers warning civilians DO NOT TRAVEL on the Lusitania. When they sank that ship, the U.S. turned and said how cruel the Germans were to attack a passenger ship. Then there was the Operation Northwood, which was a proposal of the Department of Defense. The Joint Chiefs of Staff would have employed CIA operatives to commit acts of terrorism against American civilians. They would then blame the Cuban government to justify a war against Cuba. The proposals were rejected by the Kennedy administration and have long been part of the reason people support the theory that the CIA is responsible for the killing of Kennedy. Obama, who has made a mockery out of the Nobel Peace Prize, attempted the standard lie to invade Syria, but the American people rejected it because they became tired of the lies. There were no weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, and Iraq had nothing to do with the 9/11 attack even in fake allegations. The failure of Obama to "sell" the Syrian war to the American people noted the shift in confidence from public (trust everything) to private (trust nothing). Wherever there is military action involved, there are lies to further another agenda. The benefit of a private wave is that people begin to distrust government. However, when the war cycle turns up it warns of a rise in civil unrest that can go as far as a new age of revolution if government does not stop trying to manipulate the people for nonsense. Make no mistake, the political manipulations for wars and elections are pervasive. The EU staged a coup in Italy to get rid of Berlusconi because he wanted to take Italy out of the EU. Not only is the press is conspiring with government, of course the bankers are as well. The bankers all said they would leave Scotland if it voted to exit the UK. Republicans were trying to rig the primary to stop Trump. The evidence has poured in how Hillary manipulated the Republican primary to ensure Trump would win because she thought she could beat him and ran a very divisive campaign. The movie "Wag the Dog" was based on how things really operate. They used the press as a co-conspirator to manipulate the public. This is also why this election has resulted in the collapse in public confidence in the mainstream press. True, the New York Times has admitted they were biased, but they have protected the bankers and reported fake news on Syria.


thank you very much for telling the truth Mish, i wish they were more patriots like you, and less like McCain. He's gone but unfortunately there will always be evil people perpetuating these atrocious policies.

Mike Mish Shedlock
Mike Mish Shedlock


Asking me, what I would have done in WWII, as pi314 did, is of course idiotic. Here's why:

If pi314 was born in Nazi Germany and was not a Jew it is highly likely he would have killed Jews.

But in reality, no one can say for sure what one would have done in alternate circumstances.

I can say how I DID react and my reasons why. I am proud of my stance. We can also say, without a doubt McCain supported Neo-Nazis and death squads.

McCain took one path, I took another. And that's a fact, not speculation.


I am a veteran, and I mostly agree with Mish about McCain.


Mish, thank you for publishing the truth when the media are drowning us with false praise for a war criminal thug like McCain. It is impossible to turn on the TV now without being disgusted by the virtue signalling of both the left and the right. Their state worship is abhorrent.


This is an interesting perspective, that of the objector to war and its effects on our global neighbors. What I find compelling about Mish's particular stance is that while he is openly critical of McCain's stance, and additionally supportive of more widespread dissent towards the draft, I see no similar objection towards how we, as citizens of the U.S., continually support military actions all over the globe.

By paying our taxes, we feed the war machine that is operating in Syria, Yemen, Afghanistan, Iraq, etc. I would agree that the separation is far different than serving in the military but to be clear, blood is on the hands of every American (myself included) that supports the government in its overt and clandestine military operations the world over.

In other words, Mish, you are not on the moral high ground here. Perhaps you are further up the hill than some, but as a bigger earner than most, you feed the animal that ravages the world all the same as the rest of us.

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