Tuesday, March 06, 2007

'60 MInutes' Mass Soldier's Unhappiness A Lie...

Disgruntled Soldiers Were “Cherry Picked”
By W. Thomas Smith, Jr

Sean Hannity has – pardon the cliché – hit the nail on the head. This past Sunday on his new program, Hannity’s America (9:00 pm Eastern on FOX News), he took to task CBS’s recent 60 Minutes piece that featured a handful of active-duty soldiers speaking out against the Iraq War. “CBS left out several important parts of the story,” said Hannity.

“The most glaring omission is that of context.” He went on to describe how the 60 Minutes segment was introduced by correspondent Steve Kroft, who said, “[There is] dissension in the ranks for the large group of soldiers and Marines who are fed up.” Hannity then discussed the segue into the segment wherein a group of young-looking U.S. soldiers dressed in civilian clothes began to express how America’s efforts in Iraq are simply not working, soldiers are dying everyday, and “we can’t stay in Iraq for the next thousand years.”

According to Hannity:

“What wasn’t immediately clear to the viewer was exactly how many troops are expressing these opinions. According to press releases issued by the group on Monday morning – after the 60 Minutes piece aired – more than 1,400 active duty members were in the process of sending letters of redress to their congressmen. The group’s website also has a running counter of the number of troops who have expressed similar feelings. As of Friday afternoon, that number stood at 1,701. …

That number constitutes only about one percent of all U.S. troops serving in Iraq. And since the group isn’t just soliciting the grievances of current troops in stationed in Iraq – but all active duty soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines (including Reservists and National Guardsmen serving all over the world) – that number actually gets even smaller as a percentage of the whole.”

Hannity continues, “ According to the Pentagon, as of December 31, 2006, there were 1,371,533 active-duty U.S. military personnel around the world. Meaning that 60 Minutes devoted their lead segment to the opposition of one-tenth of one percent of all armed forces.”

For perspective, Hannity then provided clips of interviews with U.S. troops he and his reporters interviewed after the airing of 60 Minutes episode, all of whom expressed a pride in service and a resolute desire to complete the mission.

They weren’t the first to do so.

During a Monday phone chat, Hannity told me, “Not one [servicemember] that I’ve met – from Iraq to Walter Reed to Bethesda – has said anything other than the fact that the mission must be completed. That’s why I knew this [the 60 Minutes segment] was a hit piece. They cherry picked [the interviewed soldiers].”



Anonymous A Statistician said...

Of course they were "cherry picked". They were doing a story about soldiers who have signed the petition for redress. You dont go out and randomly select soldiers when you are doing a report on a specific, self-selected group! Just a silly basis for an article.

6:54 AM  
Anonymous a statistician said...

It is sort of like saying that the wounded soldiers interviewed in the Walter Reed Hospital story were "cherry picked". Imagine how infintessimal that percentage is if you want to play the numbers game.

9:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, no doubt these soldiers were cherry picked. The MSM always has an agenda. But in all honesty, there has never been a soldier of any army, at anytime who hasn't groused about something. Its a part of military life to complain. J'Mac.

9:08 AM  
Blogger The Merry Widow said...

Yes, but to do a major piece on them, when they are so small a percentage of the total.
As Mark Twain said once, "There are lies, there are damned lies and there are statistics."
This falls into the last catagore of those who just want a story that supports their view, not an overview.
The military is strictly voluntary, so the soldiers are not being forced, they may leave!


9:12 AM  
Blogger Brooke said...

TMW hit the nail on the head with the Twain quote.

Another: It seems there is not anything that cannot happen today.

11:18 AM  
Blogger phandancer said...

Off topic....but holy crap you would think that Bill Clinton was ushered back into the WH and Al Gore became UN Sec. General with the way the DU boards are going today.

Rather sad commentary when you realize this is the brightest spot in most of these very unhappy people's year. To ruin the life of a (to be honest - no offense Mr. Libby) nobody who was made a fall guy for a NON CRIME makes these "progressives" feel giddy and victorious.

The funniest part is that these fools are completely blind to the fact that they are participating in the very thing they whine about all the time - Political reprisals. That is all this is....someone had to take one for the team to get past this non-issue.

In fact...I think that the real criminals here are the Plames. Of course...to the left they are the heroes.

12:56 PM  
Blogger VerityINK said...

Ducky, you fucking idiot, you're GONE. This is a Duck-Free Zone, Quackers!

2:01 PM  
Blogger VerityINK said...

Mr. Stats--What you say is true, but it is false and a lie for 60 Minutes to do a piece on the military morale and then represent it as a MAJORITY opinion when it is not. A TRULY unbiased piece would simply list the stats, criteria that was met, and let them speak for themselves.

2:04 PM  

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