Michelle Malkin, syndicated right-wing columnist and author of In Defense of Internment: The Case for "Racial Profiling" in World War II and the War on Terror, appeared on August 19 on MSNBC's Hardball with Chris Matthews. Speaking about the recent allegations against Senator John Kerry by Swift Boat Veterans for the Truth regarding the injuries he suffered while serving in the Vietnam War, Malkin alleged, "They are [sic] legitimate questions about whether or not it was a self-inflicted wound."
From the August 19 edition of Hardball:
WILLIE BROWN [Former mayor of San Francisco]: He volunteered twice. He volunteered twice in Vietnam. He literally got shot. There's no question about any of those things. So what else is there to discuss? How much he got shot, how deep, how much shrapnel?
MALKIN: Well, yes. Why don't people ask him more specific questions about the shrapnel in his leg. They are legitimate questions about whether or not it was a self-inflicted wound.
MATTHEWS: What do you mean by self-inflicted? Are you saying he shot himself on purpose? Is that what you're saying?
MALKIN: Did you read the book...
MATTHEWS: I'm asking a simple question. Are you saying that he shot himself on purpose.
MALKIN: I'm saying some of these soldiers...
MATTHEWS: And I'm asking question.
MALKIN: And I'm answering it.
MATTHEWS: Did he shoot himself on purpose.
MALKIN: Some of the soldiers have made allegations that these were self-inflicted wounds.
MATTHEWS: No one has ever accused him of shooting himself on purpose.
MALKIN: That these were self-inflicted wounds.
MATTHEWS: You're saying there are -- he shot himself on purpose, that's a criminal act?
MALKIN: I'm saying that I've read the book and some of the...
MATTHEWS: I want an answer yes or no, Michelle.
MALKIN: Some of the veterans say...
MATTHEWS: No. No one has every accused him of shooting himself on purpose.
MALKIN: Yes. Some of them say that.
MATTHEWS: Tell me where that...
MALKIN: Self-inflicted wounds -- in February, 1969.
MATTHEWS: This is not a show for this kind of talk. Are you accusing him of shooting himself on purpose to avoid combat or to get credit?
MALKIN: I'm saying that's what some of these...
MATTHEWS: Give me a name.
MALKIN: Patrick Runyon and William Zaladonis.
MATTHEWS: They said -- Patrick Runyon...
MALKIN: These people have...
MATTHEWS: And they said he shot himself on purpose to avoid combat or take credit for a wound?
MALKIN: These people have cast a lot of doubt on whether or not...
MATTHEWS: That's cast a lot of doubt. That's complete nonsense.
MALKIN: Did you read the section in the book...
MATTHEWS: I want a statement from you on this program, say to me right now, that you believe he shot himself to get credit for a purple heart.
MALKIN: I'm not sure. I'm saying...
MATTHEWS: Why did you say?
MALKIN: I'm talking about what's in the book.
MATTHEWS: What is in the book. Is there -- is there a direct accusation in any book you've ever read in your life that says John Kerry ever shot himself on purpose to get credit for a purple heart? On purpose?
MATTHEWS: On purpose? Yes or no, Michelle.
MALKIN: In the February 1969 -- in the February 1969 event.
MATTHEWS: Did he say on it purpose.
MALKIN: There are doubts about whether or not it was intense rifle fire or not. And I wish you would ask these questions of John Kerry instead of me.
MATTHEWS: I have never heard anyone say he shot himself on purpose.
I haven't heard you say it.
MALKIN: Have you tried to ask -- have you tried ask John Kerry these questions?
MATTHEWS: If he shot himself on purpose. No. I have not asked him that.
MALKIN: Don't you wonder?
MATTHEWS: No, I don't. It's never occurred to me.