Congressman John Murtha, the veteran who turned against the Iraq War, has become a household name. But odds are you haven’t heard of Thomas L. Bock. He’s a veteran who is critical of media coverage of the war. He says controversial things like “Today’s media-hungry war-protest movement is an anti-freedom movement.”
Actually, Bock is more than a veteran; he’s National Commander of the American Legion, the largest veterans organization. Bock is also a Blue Star dad. His son, Adam, is an Army CH-47 helicopter pilot currently serving in Iraq.
In an editorial appearing in the December issue of the American Legion magazine, Bock writes that “The call to prematurely withdraw U.S. troops from the war on terrorism will quite likely?as public opposition to the Vietnam War showed us?have the unintended consequence of prolonging the fight. Ho Chi Minh described the antiwar movement in the 1960s as a second front in his march to relieve South Vietnam of its freedoms.”
Last summer, Bock noted, the Legion adopted Resolution 169, urging veterans to speak out for freedom and “counter a movement that discredits those now serving in harm’s way.”
A strong voice against the Murtha position comes from Col. Brett Wyrick, a surgeon deployed in Iraq. He says, “I wish there was not a war, and I wish our young people did not have to fight and die. But I cannot wish away evil men like bin Laden and al-Zarqawi?The last thing we need here in Iraq is an exit strategy or some damn time table for withdrawal. Thank God there was no timetable for withdrawal after the Battle of the Bulge or Iwo Jima. Thank God there was no exit strategy at Valley Forge. Freedom is not easy, and it comes with a terrible price.”
Our media enjoy that freedom. They use it to run phony Koran-in-the-toilet stories that kill people and make it harder for our troops to win.
My visit to a local gun show found one booth full of photos from Iraq that were described as being censored by the U.S. news media. They show American soldiers assisting the Iraqi people, especially children. You can view them at the site of KCEN-TV of central Texas. The sponsor of the booth said he had five members of his family in the Armed Forces, including two sons in Iraq. The sign over the photos said, “The traitors in the media and Congress want to repeat Vietnam. Don’t allow it.”
Judging by the number of people viewing the exhibit, there is public interest in what the media are not telling us.
Another message posted on the exhibit said, “The media want Hillary elected. They want you to think the war is bad so you will turn against President Bush.”
I purchased a bumper sticker at the booth. It said, “Freedom of the press does not mean the right to lie.” Perhaps the public can help stop the lies.