He links to his own article explaining that Sarah WAS invited after all. Very neat.
Only it doesn't cut any ice with veterans who regard this event with the respect it deserves. One of our readers feels very strongly about it:
The last time I was at the Wall (ten trips and counting) it held me there, captive in my grief and memories as I painstakingly ran my fingers through the engravings of the names of fifteen men I knew, served with and in several cases carried their lifeless bodies to the medevac. I wept and shook and was comforted by several Vets or family members, most of whose eyes were as wet and swollen as mine. Being inside the perimeter of the Wall is an emotional event for many people, more so if you know a name or names. Now Sarah Palin is coming, intent on making this somber and emotional day into a media circus. In that regard she has already hijacked the MSM from the true purpose of Memorial Day. This is not about her, this is about honoring people who made the ultimate sacrifice. Instead the press will cover her, throwing in meaningless crap about the real activities of the day. She needs to stop, these men and women died for our freedom and she intends to hijack that for her own personal gain and to feed her low or absent self esteem? Please someone stop her from showing up.
As for the Alaska Veterans who supposedly invited her to ride and speak. Have you no brains? What were you thinking she would do with this? Did you invite your REAL Governor? Lt. Gov? Did you invite you Senators? Representatives? NO, you didn't, you invited a media whore politician whose only claim to fame is she is a failed half term governor and loser as the VP candidate in the last national election. Do you have any idea, of course you do. You KNEW she would accept because it would give her a chance to run her mouth in political discourse. Yet this day is NOT about politics so why invite the biggest political whore on the planet? You did it because someone paid you off or called in a favor. Your actions are as disrespectful to the men and women who served with you and paid the ultimate sacrifice, maybe in some instances giving their lives to protect you. How dare you politicize this event? HOW DARE YOU?
Other people, not necessarily veterans, made their views known in the comments section of Ben Smith's post:
"Sorry but I'm NOT taking my harley to ride in a teabaggers bike rally to kick off the traitor's fake campaign along with her successionist (sic) hubby Todd. UNAMERICAN and a slap in the face to Vets!"
"The NATIONAL organizer said she wasn't invited and not speaking. Her staff has been known for covering for her after screw ups. I'm sure Joseph N. Fields III doesn't speak for the national organization. Hopefully she's only getting herself overexposed again. You in the political press are sick to fall for her schtick once again."
"Palin wants to exploit Rolling Thunder for her own benefit, something she does to her own kids. Bet she'll spare no expense on the publicity. It's all image for Sarah and no substance."
"She was invited by the head of a veterans advisory council in Alaska who is a friend of Palin's and a political appointee. While he is a well-respected veteran in some circles, being invited by an individual is not the same as being invited by an "Alaska Veterans Group." After all, an official State of Alaska advisory board did not- and these days would not- invite Sarah Palin to anything. An individual who happens to be a member of the advisory council did. ps Can you imagine what Palin would do if someone was trying to crash her party?"
"Rolling Thunder began as a way to draw attention to all the MIAs. Lets not forget those who did not come home and who remain unaccounted for. Gov Pallin has become a distraction and should drop out of the ride."
Sarah Palin said her tour, which kicks off at the Rolling Thunder rally, is not political, but the gaudy decorations on her bus include a clear invitation for people to follow the tour on www.sarahpac.com. She claims her aim is to educate Americans about the enduring truths that made the country great, blah blah blah.
PAC stands for Political Action Committee. It's not an entertainement committee, it's not an education committee (I can't see that Sarah Palin could possibly educate anybody on anything, let alone when the word truth is mentioned).
Her POLITICAL Action Committee put out an ad for the tour.
The fact that her "non-political" tour will start by insulting the memory of so many, hijacking a genuine event organized by people who don't have time for Sarah Palin and her circus, doesn't bode well for the rest of the tour.
As her tour progresses, she will insult many more people and the intelligence of those who actually know their history.