Thursday, July 13, 2006

A Response To The New York Times

Do you think the far left has America's best interests in mind? Think again. But most importantly our soldiers risking their lives every day have something to say. Lt. Tom Cotton wrote this from Baghdad to the New York Times:

Dear Messrs. Keller, Lichtblau & Risen:

Congratulations on disclosing our government's highly classified anti-terrorist-financing program (June 23). I apologize for not writing sooner. But I am a lieutenant in the United States Army and I spent the last four days patrolling one of the more dangerous areas in Iraq. (Alas, operational security and common sense prevent me from even revealing this unclassified location in a private medium like email.)

Unfortunately, as I supervised my soldiers late one night, I heard a booming explosion several miles away. I learned a few hours later that a powerful roadside bomb killed one soldier and severely injured another from my 130-man company. I deeply hope that we can find and kill or capture the terrorists responsible for that bomb. But, of course, these terrorists do not spring from the soil like Plato's guardians. No, they require financing to obtain mortars and artillery shells, priming explosives, wiring and circuitry, not to mention for training and payments to locals willing to emplace bombs in exchange for a few months' salary. As your story states, the program was legal, briefed to Congress, supported in the government and financial industry, and very successful.

Not anymore. You may think you have done a public service, but you have gravely endangered the lives of my soldiers and all other soldiers and innocent Iraqis here. Next time I hear that familiar explosion or next time I feel it I will wonder whether we could have stopped that bomb had you not instructed terrorists how to evade our financial surveillance.

And, by the way, having graduated from Harvard Law and practiced with a federal appellate judge and two Washington law firms before becoming an infantry officer, I am well-versed in the espionage laws relevant to this story and other laws you have plainly violated. I hope that my colleagues at the Department of Justice match the courage of my soldiers here and prosecute you and your newspaper to the fullest extent of the law. By the time we return home, maybe you will be in your rightful place: not at the Pulitzer announcements, but behind bars.

Very truly yours,
Tom Cotton
Baghdad, Iraq


Anonymous said...

Walter Duranty was never held responsible.

I fear the same thing is going to happen here

Anonymous said...

Walter Duranty, The New York Times (1930s)
Walter Duranty, who covered the Soviet Union for The New York Times, won the Pulitzer Prize in 1932 for a series of articles he wrote about Josef Stalin's effort to industrialize the nation. However, his stories not only uncritically backed Stalinist propaganda, but also denied that the Ukrainian famine, which killed millions as a direct or indirect result of Stalinist planning, ever took place. Despite his denials in print, he allegedly confided to a British diplomat that Ukraine had been bled white. Duranty also defended Stalin's infamous show trials.

Despite efforts by Ukrainian groups to get the prize revoked, the Pulitzer board refuses to do so and the Times still lists Duranty among its prize winners, albeit with a footnote that his work is disputed.

Anonymous said...

Of course, The New York Times has for decades revealed somewhat of a soft spot for Communists and the governments they created. In the 1930’s, it won the first Pulitzer prize for foreign reporting from its Moscow correspondent Walter Duranty, a man known fondly as "Stalin’s journalist" for his propaganda filled reports denying the Soviet created famine in the Ukraine and praising the success of collectivization. Then in 1959, Times reporter Herbert Matthews fell hook, line and sinker for Fidel Castro’s exaggerated claims about the number of guerrilla fighters he had in his ranks, and his reports cemented Castro’s following and reputation. After Castro’s victory, National Review ran its now famous cover of Castro, with the Times’ then advertising slogan superimposed over his face, "I got my job through The New York Times." And in the 1960s the paper ran Harrison Salisbury’s much praised reports about the effects of American bombing on North Vietnam, stories that depended in part on false data given to him by the Communist journalist Wilfred Burchett