Stopping the Propaganda Pundits

We’re teaming up with some other groups like Freepress to send a letter to Congress asking them to initiate hearings on the Pentagon's propaganda pundit program.

Fill out the form below to sign the letter to Speaker Pelosi, Majority Leader Harry Reid, House Armed Service Committee Chair Ike Skelton, Senate Armed Service Committee Chair Carl Levin, and House Subcommittee on National Security and Foreign Affairs Chair John Tierney.

Letter Text:

Dear Congressperson:

We write to you today on a matter of great national urgency.

On April 21, 2008, the New York Times exposed a quiet military campaign to infiltrate U.S. media with propaganda. According to the article, top Pentagon and Bush administration officials recruited dozens of military officers to serve as pro-war media pundits for major news media.

These pundits appeared more than 4,500 times on cable and broadcast networks to press the administration's view on events in Iraq, Afghanistan and, increasingly, Iran. While many spoke directly from White House talking points, they did not disclose their direct ties to the administration.

By covertly spinning America's involvement in the war, the Pentagon is in violation of the spirit, if not the letter, of the law. The mainstream media's role in enabling this propaganda also raises legitimate concerns about its ability to present a full and open debate about the war and other issues of national concern.

Many in Congress have called on the Pentagon and media to provide a full explanation. We the undersigned urge you to take the next step. Congress must move quickly to launch a full investigation and convene hearings to determine the extent of wrongdoing.

This is not a partisan issue. An administration and media working together to manipulate public opinion is a violation of every conceivable standard of journalism -- and possibly of federal law. A much-needed congressional inquiry will shed light on this national scandal. The American people have the right to know.