[Pardon the premature post]
No flame, just a question . . . . How many National Guard types did you encounter while in-country?
I suspect that the fact that Lt. Kerry's testimony before Congress was in 1971 influenced his reference to the relative safety of National Guard service AT THAT TIME. He was in no position to anticipate the degradation of active forces in the future that would occasion the necessity of using formerly "home guard" troops in active combat when he formed the opinion, as did so many others, that National Guard service during the Vietnam War was an easy, and legal, "out." As a vet against the war, myself, I also believe that many young men in 1971 would have paid dearly for a slot in their local guard unit, just as a way to avoid getting shot at.