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May 20, 2005

America Supports You — but Newsweek…

On 27 February 1950, President Harry Truman announced by proclamation the observance of Armed Forces Day. This single-day observance would not only replace separate Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps days, it would also reflect the unification of our armed forces under the Department of Defense.

“This Armed Forces Day,” declared President Truman, “marks the first combined demonstration by America’s defense team of its progress, under the National Security Act, towards the goal of readiness for any eventuality.” General Omar Bradley, former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, was more reflective. “Sacrifice, not selfishness,” he said, “must be the eternal price of liberty. Vigilance, not appeasement, is the byword of living freedoms.” Former Supreme Allied Commander Dwight Eisenhower noted, “It is fitting and proper that we devote one day each year to paying special tribute to those whose constancy and courage constitute one of the bulwarks guarding the freedom of this nation and the peace of the free world.”

Armed Forces Day is thus reserved to honor American Patriots in uniform – the Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines standing in harm’s way so that we might live free. This year, AFD is Saturday, 21 May. And on that day, we at The Federalist Patriot, on behalf of the vast majority of our fellow Americans, will proudly and enthusiastically reaffirm our support to the fighting forces of this great nation.

There are a few among us, however, who just don’t get it.

“War is an ugly thing,” wrote 19th Century political philosopher John Stuart Mill, “but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling, which thinks that nothing is worth war is worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature….”

One such stable of miserable creatures toils at Newsweek magazine, one of the Leftmedia’s favorite forums for liberal editorial opinion masquerading as objective journalism. Its editors were busy this week feigning sincere regret for having played fast and loose with the facts. Earlier this month, the magazine posted a story by Michael Isikoff – a story that accused military interrogators at Guantanamo Bay of flushing a Qu'ran down the toilet in order to demoralize al-Qa'ida combatants being held there.

Eventually, Newsweek Editor Mark Whitaker retracted the story – well, sort of. Last weekend, suggesting only a correction was in order, Whitaker told his media kinfolk that his publication had “retracted what we think we may have gotten wrong. We’ve called it an error. We’ve called it a mistake.”

What they “may have gotten wrong”?

Clearly, the Newsweek brain trust didn’t learn any lessons from last year’s CBS Memogate debacle. Yet by Tuesday, Whitaker had issued a full retraction: “It became clear people weren’t quite hearing that [we made a mistake] and were getting hung up [on semantics]. Based on what we know now, we are retracting our original story….”

Unfortunately, during the interim between Newsweek’s posting and its retraction, Jihadi Islamofascists murdered at least 18 civilians and injured hundreds more during anti-American protests in Afghanistan, Pakistan and points east – protests prompted by the phony story. The cost to American national interests in the Middle East and Far East, not to mention increased security concerns for American armed forces in the region, were substantial. However, don’t expect Newsweek’s next issue to feature the faces of the dead, or an apology to their families, or an exhaustive CBS-like investigation of what went wrong.

Nonetheless, Newsweek, owned by another fine purveyor of liberal opinion, The Washington Post, was rightly called to task for its negligence. “That story has damaged the image of the United States abroad and damaged the credibility of the media at home,” said White House spokesman Scott McClellan. Americans “share in the outrage that this report was published in the first place.”

Indeed, we do – and we’re led to wonder why this piece ever ran. Even if true, what legitimate purpose could be served by publishing such a story? (Don’t get hung up on the word “legitimate.” Newsweek doesn’t.)

Even Michael Isikoff knows that stories advancing the Leftmedia’s editorial agenda have a better chance of being published than those that do not. For example, when Isikoff submitted a report on Paula Jones’s accusation that Bill Clinton, while governor of Arkansas, had exposed himself to her, his employer at that time, The Washington Post, declined to run the story. Then, when Isikoff proffered Kathleen Willey’s account of being sexually accosted by then-President Clinton (including plenty of evidence), Newsweek declined to run the story. Finally, when Isikoff broke the story about Clinton’s relationship with a 21-year-old White House intern (something feminists used to regard as a no-no), Newsweek once again declined to run the story.

Yet given the chance to undermine the foreign policy of a Republican president and sully the reputation of our nation’s fighting forces, the Leftmedia throws all caution to the wind.

Speaking of shoddy journalism and pervasive bias, CBS earlier this week announced the cancellation of its disgraced “60 Minutes Wednesday,” the show that Gunga Dan Rather helped flush with his phony pre-election hit piece on President George W. Bush. The big news out of Black Rock this week was the announcement of the prestigious Peabody Award for journalism. In an altogether fitting expression of the Leftmedia’s contempt for America’s armed forces and their Commander in Chief, this year’s Peabody was awarded to – you guessed it – Dan Rather.

Of course, media political agendas are nothing new. Thomas Jefferson protested, “During the course of administration, and in order to disturb it, the artillery of the press has been leveled against us, charged with whatsoever its licentiousness could devise or dare. These abuses of an institution so important to freedom and science are deeply to be regretted….”

That notwithstanding, here is an indisputable fact: Our nation remains the land of the free and the home of the brave because of its noblest Patriots – its Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines. For this, we, the American people, offer our heartfelt thanks.

We encourage all likeminded Patriots to take a moment and thank our men and women in uniform. Sign an Open Letter in Support of America’s Armed Forces.

You can also view a great tribute to our Patriot Armed Forces here.

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