Maybe he’s just looking for an overhead compartment?

John F(lipper) Kerry


Now, I realize that a proper salute a President does not make, but COME ON.

I’ve got Cub Scouts in my den who salute better than that.

Airborne Combat Engineer has more at the link above, including instructions to salute properly. With diagrams. Someone send Kerry the link.

I mean, this really doesn’t matter in the great scheme of things. But Kerry is always trying to use his allegedly heroic military service as a reason to vote for him. Shouldn’t he act the part?

UPDATE: The more I look at this, the more I think he must not be saluting. I mean, he’s not that big of a wanker, is he?


  1. Upon further review, Murdoc, I agree that he very well may not have been attempting to salute. I’m sure he wasn’t looking for an empty bin, as he’s not had to do that since he married his first rich wife ($300mil) and started flying First Class, where attendents take care of that for you. He might be shielding his eyes from the light reflecting off the white ceiling from the camera floodlight, so he can see and talk to somebody seated. If and when he actually salutes (something he technically should not do in his current situation, unless I’m mistaken), we’ll see if he does it correctly and sharply. In any case, it’s led to some interesting dialog on proper saluting (something many who have never been in the military find anal retentive, but something the military takes it VERY seriously, as you know. The theory, I believe, is that soldiers who respect traditional etiquette and do the little things right will respond to orders without question in the heat of battle. A sharp military is a well-disciplined military. Ron, a Vet and ACE reader, commented that he salutes correctly now, but with the LEFT hand. That might be a good tradition to start, as long as people understood it was a gesture of respect to one’s country, the military, and the person being saluted. What do you and your reader’s think? Unless I’m mistaken, currently the only legitimate salute for civilians not in uniform and not in the direct line chain of command (like SoD Rumsfeld and POTUS GWB) is the hand over the heart. But, I’ve still not found an authoritative source to document this. I read a story about President Bush saluting a badly wounded soldier in a hospital. The person who initiates a salute is acknowledging the superior position of the person saluted. The cynical will call that just another photo op moment, but I believe President Bush carries the weight of all the soldiers who have died or have been wounded/disabled under his watch. I believe he would not risk one American life if he didn’t believe the cause justified the cost.

  2. Well, I was being a little tongue-in-cheek about looking for an overhead compartment, and I didn’t really mean to argue that he WASN’T saluting. It is, as you point out, so sloppy. I also thought about shielding his eyes from glare, but the picture doesn’t really seem to support that idea either, IMO. If you click the ‘enlarge’ button, you can see a little more of the cabin, but nothing that explains Kerry’s posture. What probably happened was that we was doing something unimportant and un-newsworthy. Except that the photographer just happened to hit the shutter button at that exact moment, freezing Kerry in the middle of whatever it was he was doing. Later, the photographer or someone else at the NYT saw the pic and, not knowing any better, thought it was a cool picture of Kerry saluting. There really doesn’t seem to be any reason to use that pic if he ISN’T saluting, at least in the opinion of the editors. It hit the press (and the web) and people who DO know better just laugh and talk about what a dweeb Kerry is. He’s certainly a fair target for such things, just like when Bush mis-pronounces words or misspeaks in some other way. His past performance has people on the lookout for that type of behavior, and anything close gets jumped on. However, Kerry did display the flag incorrectly in his office the other day. Again, a relatively minor faux pas, but something that is going to get jumped on by the opposition. Especially for one who has tried to portray himself as an all-American hero. Here’s a link to a Free Republic post (I commented on it somewhere down a ways) about the flag flap:

  3. He might be that big of a ‘wanker.’ Have you seen this photo of him bracing to catch a football? If that doesn’t work for you, go to this link: (forgot where I saw that, or I’d give credit) When I closed my eyes in grade school, the older boys chided me for catching the ball like a girl. (No offense intended,Ladies – that was a long time ago, when the schoolyard bullies didn’t get PC training.)