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Ventura says he didn’t see combat in Vietnam

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Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura, who has used his military record to deflect criticism and bash foes but has kept mostly mum on what he did during the Vietnam War, has disclosed for the first time that he did not see combat.

"To the best of my knowledge, I was never fired upon," Ventura said in an interview Monday with the St. Paul Pioneer Press about his years as a Navy SEAL in the 1970s.

Ventura has steadfastly refused to disclose much about his two overseas deployments, which totaled 17 months, saying his commanding officer gave their unit strict orders never to talk about what they had seen or done.

Ventura had never specifically claimed to have fought in Vietnam. Based at Subic Bay in the Philippines as a member of Underwater Demolition Team 12, when he was still known as James Janos, Ventura earned the Vietnam Service Medal.