By Greg Anthony Szymanski, JD
25 Oct 2005
POW issue has long been a thorn in the side of government, a problem politicians keep pushing under the rug. Despite credible evidence soldiers were left behind and are still living in political prison camps in North Korea and Vietnam, high-powered, two-faced Senators, like John Kerry and John McCain, are the main culprits for keeping the truth from the American people.
However, on Oct. 28, Rep. Ron Paul (R- Tex.) is holding a press conference to revive the issue, officially sending to each legislator on Capital Hill a copy of an historic video called “Missing, Presumed Dead: The Search for American POW’s,” in an attempt to open new hearings, being introduced under House Resolution 123.
The following story is about Bob Dumas, whose brother, Roger, may still be alive in a North Korea prison camp after more than 50 years and his nephew, Bill Dumas, the writer and producer of the historic POW video that finally tells the true story.
Most people would fight through hell and high water to find a missing loved one. Bob Dumas is no different.
For 55 long years, he has been looking for his younger brother, Roger, after he was taken prisoner during the Korean War. But despite traveling to the ends of the earth and trying to uncover every small stone imaginable, his brother’s whereabouts still remain a mystery.
However, Dumas says, a mystery which could have easily been solved decades ago if it wasn’t for the criminal activity and outright lies of the United States government by and through many two-faced, high ranking politicians and military officers still lurking on Capital Hill today.
Two of the major corrupt politicians he wants to expose as liars and two-faced traitors, in what he calls the “biggest military cover-up in the history of our country,” are former Presidential candidate and Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) and Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), a former Vietnam POW declared a national hero.
“He’s no hero,” said Dumas, 74, in an extended conversation this week from his Connecticut home. “He’s anything but a hero. Ask why he had the Senate, through Kerry’s influence, seal all his POW records in Vietnam? He had these records sealed for life and is hiding the true story of how he sided with the North Vietnamese to save his own skin.”
McCain sells his fellow POW brothers down the river
Even though the true story of McCain’s captivity may never be known, backing up Dumas’ harsh criticism is a 1992 article written by Ted Sampley in the U.S. Veteran Dispatch entitled “John McCain: The Manchurian Candidate,” a scathing article strongly criticizing McCain’s credibility and truthfulness.
Sampley writes: “What, therefore, motivates a John McCain to attack as a pit bull everyone and anyone who has the opinion that men are still alive in the very same captivity that he himself once experienced? Mr. McCain disguises his attacks on the POW/MIA by claiming he is on the committee to ask “the tough questions” to grill and berate in order to get to the truth. What motivates the man, who at the same time has shown a sensitive, almost patronizing approach to U.S. government officials who have lied to the committee?”
Further Sampley’s article gives eye-witness accounts, information McCain has since classified, showing how the former Navy fighter pilot’s own story told to the American people is filled with holes and many inconsistencies.
“After being periodically slapped around for “three or four days” by his captors who wanted military information from him, which McCain claims he refused to give, providing only his name, rank and serial number, he realized he was in critical shape and called for an officer. He told the officer, ‘O.K., I’ll give you military information if you will take me to the hospital.’
“Regardless of the reasons, the offer to give “military information” in exchange for better treatment was a violation of the military Code of Conduct and Collaboration No. l.
“The doctor, according to McCain, said about taking him to the hospital, ‘It’s too late.’ At that point, McCain knew he was in big trouble. According to information obtained by the U.S. VETERAN, the flier in desperation invoked the name of his famous father, Admiral John S. McCain, Jr., the soon-to-be commander of all U.S. Forces in the Pacific.
“And that was a violation of the Code of Conduct and Collaboration No. 2.
“McCain admits that because of the Vietnamese having the knowledge of who his father was, he thus survived because they rushed him to the hospital. The Vietnamese figured that because POW McCain’s father was of such high military rank that he was of royalty or the governing circle. Thereafter the communist bragged that they had captured “the crown prince.”
“At the hospital his wounds were treated. He readily admits that other U.S. prisoners with similar wounds were left to die, pointing out “There were hardly any amputees among the prisoners who came back because the North Vietnamese just would not give medical treatment to someone who was badly injured. They weren’t going to waste their time.
“McCain has failed to mention in public what he has confided to another U.S. prisoner privately, that since the Vietnamese felt they had in their hands such a ‘special prisoner’, a propaganda bonanza, a Soviet surgeon was called in to treat him.”
And to add more fuel to the McCain controversy, according to Dumas, in the forefront of the POW issue for over a half century, and several Vietnam POW’s like retired Navy captain, Eugene “Red” McDaniel, McCain was given special treatment since he told the North Vietnamese he was the son of Admiral John McCain II, who became commander-in chief pf the Pacific forces in 1968 and who actually ordered the bombing of Hanoi while his son was in prison.
However, instead of coming to McDaniel’s side, a long time activist in keeping the POW/MIA issue alive in the halls of Congress, McCain has openly called McDaniel a “fraud and dishonorable man who preys upon families still unaccounted for from the war.”
Although McDaniel was unavailable for comment, Dumas said he told him that he was aware of many propaganda anti-American broadcasts made by McCain, while in captivity from 1967-73, in exchange for special treatment and basically to “save his own hide” when many other POW’s received no medical care and were left to die.
Even though it’s understandable a man trying to save his life may compromise his ethics, the problem with McCain is that he’s withheld truth about his POW record and, without question, has not come the aide of those honorable veterans trying to get at the truth behind the POW scandal.
“If it ever becomes known and people find out the real truth about McCain, Kerry and the others, there will be political turmoil,” said Dumas
“They both know there are many POW’s still alive all over the world, but instead of admitting there are many MIA’s and trying to negotiate their release, they just take the easy way out, claiming they’re dead. Kerry and McCain have simply sold the POW’s down the river in Vietnam as well as those like my brother who could still be alive after 50 years in a North Korean prison camp.”
More than 93,000 POW’s, from World War I through the Gulf Wars, have been left to rot by the U.S. government. Dumas filed and won a landmark federal court case to change his brother’s POW’s status from ‘presumed dead’ to ‘prisoner of war’ but ruling had no teeth as military ignored court opinion.
Dumas says the major problem with our country’s stance toward POW’s is that we refuse to negotiate for the safe return of our captured soldiers instead declaring them “missing and presumed dead’ as an easy way out.
He even filed and won a landmark federal court case in 1985 to get Roger’s POW official status changed, the judge ruling in his favor. But after government trickery using legal jargon as an escape hatch, the military lawyers simply declared Roger dead, saying even though the court found him to be a POW, there was no need to investigate further essentially closing the case.
“The government just ignored the ruling and it basically had no teeth as nothing really changed,” recalls Dumas, who added that two witnesses on his behalf died suspiciously before testifying and a third, who testified, did so after being repeatedly threatened and harassed.
In the case of Roger, Dumas’ younger brother captured in North Korea, his story is a perfect example of how many lost soldiers are put “out of sight and out of mind” by the U.S. government’s policy of lying to family members about the real status of their missing loved ones.
“My brother was declared dead in 1954, along with about 8,300 other POW’s in Korea, after our government didn’t know how to deal with the problem,” said Dumas even though Roger was verified as being seen alive and in a North Korean prison camp in 1957. “Back then Eisenhower didn’t know how to deal with the problem so, as an easy way out, he just gave orders to tell all the families that their loved ones were dead. And, basically that is still the policy today, effecting more than 93,000 POW’s.
Dumas said throughout the painfully long and hard years of trying to locate his brother, many attempts to travel to North Korea to locate his whereabouts have been blocked by the State Department, including a visit headed by Rev. Jesse Jackson stopped at the 11th hour.
Besides his brother, Dumas has received credible information, covered-up by U.S. authorities including Senators McCain and Kerry, that more than 3,000 POW’s may be still be alive and held captive in North Korean prison camps.
“Even last year Korean Lt. Col. Kim Yong went on the record, stating there were many live Americans still being held in political prison camps,” said Dumas, adding family members deserve the truth about the real status of their loved ones not the cover-up orchestrated by the U.S. government.
“We know there are many Americans still alive. The Pentagon will admit it. Kerry and McCain and the rest of Congress know it too, but nobody will do anything. And that is why have I have said all along this is the biggest military cover-up in the history of our country.”
Missing soldiers were simply forgotten until POW advocates like Dumas forced the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Foreign Relations, headed by Kerry in the early 1990’s, to investigate the numerous sightings of POW’s in Vietnam and North Korea
Although Sen. Kerry served in Vietnam and ran for the White House as a friend of combat veterans, his own POW Commission in January 1993 released a report that made a mockery of the POW issue and trashed any effort by activists to get at the real truth.
Called by Dumas and others bold-faced liars and cover-up artists, Kerry, McCain and others on the Foreign Relations Committee ignored the evidence, releasing a report concluding that U.S. POW’s were left behind, but all have since died. The report added further insult to injury to activists like Dumas seeking the truth when it stated that “all possible efforts in Korea and Vietnam have been undertaken to search for the remains of the dead soldiers.
“Kerry sold out his fellow soldiers just like McCain,” said Dumas. “What’s worse is that McCain then made sure Kerry helped get his own POW records sealed from public view for life in order to keep the truth about what really happened in Vietnam from the American people.
“Furthermore, any Congressman like Bob Dornan or Senator like Bob Smith who really tried to help us get at the truth behind Kerry and McCain’s back, were simply run out of office. At this point, the only hope left was going to the press but, as it turned out, the mainstream media, including all the television stations, didn’t want to touch our story with a ten foot pole.”
Newsweek runs Dumas story, written by Melinda Liu its China bureau chief in June 2000, appearing in its international edition as well as a limited run domestically. The story, however, receives no attention and no other outlets print follow-ups, including Dan Rather who Dumas says personally quashed the story
Dumas recalls after his brother Roger’s POW story appeared in 2000, he figured the to be the beginning of a media campaign to push for the truth about the numerous POW’s reportedly alive in North Korean prison camps.
But instead of being hounded for interviews, Dumas was shunned by the press, adding he didn’t receive one interview request leading to speculations that the story was somehow censored in America.
“Melinda told me it was one hell of a story but that the magazine, owned by Katherine Graham of the Washington Post, had ways to keep the story pout of the major markets in the states,” said Dumas. “It must have been censored since I was never contacted by any of the other major newspapers or television stations.
“But I did get a rather intimidating call from Graham, the owner of Newsweek, after the story ran internationally. She warned me not to go running around the country saying that my brother was a POW or she would have turn the country upside down, I told her to go ahead and start turning because I was going to shut up about my brother’s story.”
And the media kept Dumas’ story, as well as the entire POW issue, under wraps pretty well until an attempt 18 months ago was made by Linda Kim, a courageous CBS 48 Hours producer, who tried to expose the issue again, an attempt which never made it on the air and, according to Dumas, quashed personally by Dan Rather.
“I found out to that Dan Rather is a rat like the rest of them,” said Dumas about his story that never aired on CBS and also has led to the strange disappearance of Kim no longer working at the station. “No one has been able to find her and thanks to Rather, I surmise, she is no longer working at the station. I got it from inside sources that Rather personally told Kim and others not to talk with Dumas or talk with Dumas.
“They had originally asked if I wanted to accompany the 48 Hour crew to North Korea to try and uncover Roger, but that never happened. And if Rather professes to be such a truth-telling journalist, why did he purposely not want to cover our story. I guess he’s bought and paid off like the rest of the media.”
To keep the POW issue alive, Dumas’ nephew, Bill Dumas, a Hollywood writer and filmmaker, recently produced and distributed a video called “Missing, Presumed Dead: The Search for America’s POW’s” narrated by Ed Asner and winning the top documentary prize at a recent FT. Myers, Florida, film festival
Besides catching the eye of film buffs, Rep. Ron Paul (R-Tex.) has now taken up the cause on Capital Hill to get the truth out about the thousands of living POW’s still incarcerated in political prisons around the world.
Rep. Paul has invited the Dumas family to attend an Oct. 28 Washington press conference where he plans to make public his intention to distribute over 750 copies of Dumas’ POW documentary to each member of Congress and influential members of the Executive branch.
Dumas said never before has Congress been blanketed with such a unified POW message as contained in the documentary and Rep. Paul plans to use this message as a way passing House Resolution Bill 123.
House Resolution 123 seeks to force Congress to investigate “all the unresolved matters relating to any United States personnel unaccounted for from the Vietnam era, the Korean conflict, WW II, the Cold War missions and the Gulf Wars, including all issues regarding MIA’s and POW’s.
In the video, former Sen. Bob Smith, pushed out of pubic life, appears, saying he is convinced from the evidence that there are many men still alive in political prison camps in both Korea and Vietnam.
“We should accept the evidence and move ahead to find these men,” Sen. Smith said in the documentary.
Other events like the State’s Department’s last minute refusal to allow Jesse Jackson’s North Korean POW trip to materialize are included in the video as well as showing how Senate subcommittee hearings were abruptly cut off by Senator McCain and Kerry, who also refused to be interviewed for the film.
And then included in the film is the heart wrenching testimony of Bob Dumas, recounting the endless search for his missing younger brother, a search he said is still not over.
“McCain and Kerry are just waiting for all us old timers to die off. They just want us to fade into the woodwork,” said Dumas. “It’s like Mission Impossible. But we’re getting closer and closer all the time.
“I wanted to add one last thing: I really worry for the safety of my nephew, Bill, who made this truthful documentary. And I told him when he’s in Washington this week to watch his back.
“This is the second time I’ve tried to make this video. The man who attempted to do make it several years ago worked for USA Today and suspiciously turned up dead after being sent on assignment overseas.”
The following radio shows from 2005 hosted by Greg Anthony highlight the above story and feature Bob Dumas and Ed Asner