Wednesday, June 25, 2008

'When John McCain was my captive' - Former jailer supports McCain for President, but says he was never tortured.


Tran Trong Duyet - a sprightly retiree and amateur ballroom dancer - must rank as one of John McCain's more unlikely supporters.

Four decades ago, during the Vietnam war, Mr Duyet was in charge of the notorious Hoa Lo prison - the place where Mr McCain says he was brutally beaten and tortured during five-and-a-half years as an American prisoner of war.

"McCain is my friend," said 75-year-old Mr Duyet as he feeds the caged birds he now keeps in his garden in this coastal city.

"If I was American, I would vote for him."

Informal chats

Navy pilot John McCain was shot down during a bombing raid over the North Vietnamese capital, Hanoi, in 1967.

He ejected from his aircraft and parachuted into a city lake - only to be dragged out by an angry crowd, barely conscious, and with two broken arms and a broken leg.

From there he was taken to Hoa Lo prison, known to its American military inmates as the "Hanoi Hilton".

McCain has since described enduring months of solitary confinement and systematic torture which drove him to try to kill himself.

"I don't know how he'd react if he met me again," said Mr Duyet, flicking through old black and white photographs of himself and his American prisoners at Hoa Lo.

"But I can confirm to you that we never tortured him. We never tortured any prisoners."

Mr Duyet reminisces instead about how he often summoned the future US presidential candidate to his private office for informal chats.

"We used to argue about the war - about whether it was right or wrong," he says.

"He is a very frank man - very conservative, and very loyal to his country and the American ideal.

"He had a very interesting accent and sometimes he taught me words in English and corrected my accent. I have followed his career since he left prison."......

This Guy sounds like GW BUSH, backs McCain and doesn't recognize Torture

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