In the Milwaukee Democratic debate, Hillary bragged about her friendship with Henry Kissinger and recounted his great admiration for her. Disgusted, Bernie Sanders grabbed the moment, promising that he would never call Kissinger his friend or take advice from the architect of the secret barbaric bombings in Cambodia and the engineer of the illegal military coup in Chile.
But Hillary loves Henry and apparently has forgotten his role in the Vietnam War she claims she so adamantly opposed.
Her mutual admiration fest with Kissinger is at odds with her Walter Mitty-like dream about him that she recounted to historian Taylor Branch. In the dream, she courageously confronted Nixon’s Secretary of State about his despicable role in the secret bombings in Vietnam that killed hundreds of thousands. According to Hillary, her comments rendered him “speechless.”
But in real life, there’s no such confrontations, no such recriminations, no such courage. Instead, Hillary gushes about Kissinger, and according to Mother Jones, the Clintons and Kissingers are BFFs, frequently spending Christmas vacations together at the lavish Dominican Republic estate of their mutual friend, the late Oscar de la Renta.
They’re an item.
Hillary even penned an obsequious review of Kissinger’s book for The Washington Post, describing Kissinger as “surprisingly idealistic.”
Is she kidding? That is undoubtedly the first — and only — time that Dr. Kissinger has ever been called idealistic. If there is one man who has never shown idealism, it is Henry Kissinger.
Here are a few Kissinger gems:
“I don’t see why we need to stand by and watch a country go communist due to the irresponsibility of its people. The issues are much too important for the Chilean voters to be left to decide for themselves.”
An ardent supporter of the Chinese government’s massacre of thousands of protesters at Tiananmen Square, he defended them by saying:
“No government in the world would have tolerated having the main square of its capital occupied for eight weeks by tens of thousands of demonstrators who blocked the authorities from approaching the area in front of the main Government building.”
There’s his idealism showing through! Just shoot and kill the students if they want to stop repression and won’t move. No need to negotiate.
So how did this unlikely Hillary/Henry friendship happen?
It seems like the apple-polisher Dr. Kissinger figured out the way to get directly to Hillary’s heart — unabashed flattery. The Nobel Prize negotiator knows precisely how to size up his targets and figure out what they want. He’s been a genius at that all his life. For Hillary, its praise and legitimacy. So he went to work.
He needed her to be an ally because his international consulting firm can’t haul in the big bucks unless he gets along with the secretary of state. So Henry turned on the charm and figured out the best way to dazzle Hillary. And she fell for it hook, line, and sinker. It’s a symbiotic relationship: He flatters her and validates her in public and she helps him out with his lucrative business by providing access to the State Department.
One thing we’ve learned from reading the fawning emails from her top staff and associates is just how much Hillary savors compliments. She routinely asks her staff to print them all. There must be a giant binder somewhere with of all the emails from her lackeys and associates telling her how brilliant she was or how gorgeous she looked in a photo. And right on top is a big fat quote from Kissinger.
His fawning has had another unintended effect: Somehow, Kissinger’s enthusiastic embrace of Hillary has erased her consciousness of his role in the Vietnam War.
In Hillary’s first memoir, Living History, she described her opposition to the Vietnam War, which she called “unlawful and unconstitutional.” She tells of her emotional reaction to the massacres at the Kent State anti-war protests – she ran out of her dorm in tears.
But she doesn’t seem to connect her distress over the horrors of the Vietnam War with the man who engineered it. She considers him “a friend” and cheers his alleged belief that the critical importance of American values must trump our other interests, including “standing up for human rights.”
Too bad he didn’t believe a word of that when he was in power.
Tell it to the hundreds of thousands who were tortured and killed during the military coup in Chile that was secretly orchestrated by Kissinger and Nixon to help American corporations with investments in the area. And tell it to the hundreds of thousands of civilians who were killed in the secret — and unauthorized — bombings in Cambodia.
In 1989, the acclaimed New York Times columnist Anthony Lake found Kissinger’s actions while in power to be the polar opposite of what Hillary described in her highly complementary book review:
“Mr. Kissinger instructed us that American policy should be concerned with our strategic interests more than our values. We must be realistic, he said. We have to care not about people but about those who hold power in the world: governments. We must play the game of geopolitics, maneuvering this state against that. We cannot be squeamish about things like abuses of human rights.”
But Hillary is smitten. It’s not that she didn’t understand Kissinger’s role in Vietnam. When she was in the White House, she told historian Taylor Branch that she had a dream about Henry Kissinger.
Here’s what she said about it:
In the dream, “she noticed Kissinger in the buffet line at a dinner.” In a casual conversation, he told her that he had been worried that if HillaryCare passed, he might be forced to change doctors, but he wasn’t worried because it wouldn’t pass.
“Oh, Dr. Kissinger,” she replied coolly, “don’t be sure that it’s dead. We’ll keep fighting. There’s always light at the end of the tunnel.” In her dream, “Kissinger blanched, speechless at the deft reminder of the Vietnam War…Now at least in Hillary’s dream, it registered that his strategic designs had spewed carnage and venom for seven needless years…”
“That’s what I dreamed,” Hillary told Branch. “Lost in thought, she said “I always get revenge in my dreams.”
A year earlier, Hillary actually had the conversation about health care reform with Kissinger. She said nothing whatsoever about Vietnam, saving her criticism for dreams.
Bernie Sanders pounced adroitly on Hillary’s references to Kissinger:
“Now I find it rather amazing, because I happen to believe that Henry Kissinger was one of the most destructive secretaries of state in the modern history of this country. I am proud to say Henry Kissinger is not my friend.”
Sanders, apparently likes to get his revenge in real time.