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Pat Boone: CBS and 60 Minutes Modern Benedict Arnolds
Recently, entertainer Pat Boone wrote a letter regarding his feelings on Abu Ghraib and Iraq:
"Hasn't anybody got the guts to accuse the worst perpetrator in this whole Abu Ghraib prison debacle - CBS and 60 Minutes II?
What do you call it when, in time of war, someone takes military intelligence and turns it over to the enemy, who in turn uses it to kill Americans?
Isn't that the definition of treason? Did Benedict Arnold do worse? Did Julias and Ethel Rosenberg pay with their lives for something like this?
It has already been well established, and CBS certainly knew, that the military announced to the press back in January that allegations had been made concerning treatment of prisoners and were being investigated.
In March there was another announcement that the allegations were still being investigated and certain service personnel at Abu Ghraib were relieved of their duties and might be court marshaled.
In other words, while America was fighting a war, the military had already taken the allegations seriously, were investigating them and were taking steps to correct the situation. In other words, it was being handled, and handled well.
These things happen in war on all sides, and though they are not excusable, they are kindergarten exercises compared to car bombs, ambushes, rocket launchings and dangling burning bodies over bridges - and this is what the interrogators at Abu Ghraib were trying to find ways to stop.
Freedom of the press is precious to us, but you can abuse any liberty and stretch it out of shape until it becomes license, and concerned citizens will call for limitations.
In this case, if CBS had really cared about the country, about our military, about doing the right thing, they would have taken these pictures, (which they had illegally) and asked the military and the Pentagon what was being done about the abuses (Although they most likely knew it, they would have been told that the matter was in hand and being taken care of).
Indeed, a general implored them not to publish the pictures because of what he knew would happen as a result.
CBS could have cared less.
In their mad competition for rating points, dollars, and seeing a great way to blast the President and the war effort in Iraq which they have continually denigrated and opposed, they broadcast they abhorrent pictures - and not just to the United States, BUT TO THE WORLD!
Knowing full well that we were walking a tight rope, trying to fight a war, quell disturbances and build a republic for Iraq in the midst of all the terrorist resistance, CBS published these abhorrent pictures knowing they would destroy completely our image and standing in the Muslim world.
And what about Osama bin Laden? What about the terrorists? What about America's image with all our allies around the world? And what about America's own self image and confidence in their leaders?
And what did the beheaders of Nick Berg say, just before they callously sawed his head off while he screamed, "This is in retaliation for what you Americans did to our people at Abu Ghraib!" And how did they know about these interrogation abuses?
Though poor Mr. Berg blames George Bush and Donald Rumsefld, it is incontrovertible that his son would be home with him right now had it not been for the publication of those pictures. Mr. Berg is pointing his finger in the wrong direction.
And as a direct result of CBS callous and patently unpatriotic action, America is suffering great loss of prestige around the world, and will for decades.
America has lost credibility with Muslims and the Arab world internationally, perhaps forever; and every American life is in far greater danger from terrorist reprisal, no matter who and where we are!
Freedom of the press is a cherished commodity, guaranteed by our Constitution. But freedoms, if they are to be maintained and to have the original meaning, must be treated with grave responsibility and restraint.
For me, CBS has become "the enemy within", and I hope never to watch the network again. I think most Americans ought to reflect on the results of their irresponsible and unpatriotic behavior and perhaps narrow their viewing options by one network. The next time America or Americans suffer at the hands of terrorists, thank CBS.
P.S. As of today, May 21St, you can add Brokaw, NBC and The Washington Post to the list. Have these media pariahs gone mad?! Who'll be next to fire at our own troops?"
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