Full-Page 9/11 Ad Calls On Congress to Win the War

By Randy Hall | July 7, 2008 | 8:32pm EDT

(CNSNews.com) - One day after the liberal activist group MoveOn ran a full-page ad in the New York Times entitled "General Petraeus or General Betray Us?" a conservative non-profit group ran another full-page ad in the same paper declaring that "Victory is America's only choice" in the war on terror.

"Surrender to terrorists is not an option," begins the ad, which also ran in Tuesday's editions of the Washington Post and USA Today. "On Sept. 11, 2001, al Qaeda attacked America, killing thousands of innocent people."

"This was followed by terrorist attacks in Spain, London, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan, Pakistan and in other places," the ad continues over a background photograph of men with their faces covered who are pointing rifles into the air. "Just last week, a major terrorist attack was prevented in Germany."

"The war against terrorism is real, and it is not going away. It is a global war that must be fought and won," the ad states. "Now, Congress must make an important and historic choice: Surrender to terrorists in Iraq or help that government defeat the terrorists."

At the bottom of the ad, readers are asked to "Tell your congressman and senator: Victory is America's only choice."

Bradley Blakeman, president of Freedom's Watch, told Cybercast News Service on Tuesday, "We released this ad because Congress is on the verge of a historic choice: Do we defeat terrorism or do we surrender to it?

"This time of year lends itself to the reality terrorism can bring," he said. "Six years ago, this country was attacked, and thousands of lives were lost. We must win the War on Terror so horrors like that never happen again."

On the organization's Web site, Freedom's Watch describes itself as "an organization dedicated to fighting to protect the ideals and issues that keep America strong and prosperous."

As Cybercast News Service previously reported, MoveOn.org ran a full-page ad in Monday's New York Times asking whether it's "General Petraeus or General Betray Us?"

The ad described the general as a "military man constantly at war with the facts" and suggested he's doing the bidding of the White House in his progress report to Congress.

When Republicans called on Democrats to denounce that ad, Eli Pariser, executive director of the MoveOn Political Action Committee, responded: "We stand by our ad."

Calls seeking comment from MoveOn regarding the Freedom's Watch advertisement were not returned by press time, but Blakeman expressed strong opinions on the liberal group's "General Betray Us" ad.

"I thought it was an outrage, unpatriotic and disrespectful, and I think they should be ashamed of themselves," he said. "Gen. Petraeus is a lot of things, but he's not a Benedict Arnold, and he's not somebody who would sell himself for something he didn't believe in."

"I believe he's his own person, and I believe him to be a patriot," Blakeman added.

Both the MoveOn ad and the Freedom's Watch ad were the same size and one day apart in the New York Times. But "General Betray Us" drew extensive coverage in other news media -- particularly TV and radio -- while the "Victory" ad attracted little attention, even though it was in full color and the other ad was only in black and white.

Blakeman said that his group's ad received less coverage not because of what it is, but because of what it is not.

"I think the tenor of our ads, like the tenor of our TV ads, is factual," he said. "We're not making conclusions for people. We're giving them facts and letting them come to their own conclusions. We're not being divisive or hateful or disrespectful."

Tim Graham, director of media analysis for the Media Research Center, which is the parent organization of Cybercast News Service, took a broader view of the different reception each ad received.

"The national media almost never consider a newspaper advertisement as a political story since it's literally paid publicity, and that's especially true of conservative newspaper ads," Graham said.

"For the media to highlight a MoveOn.org advertising campaign suggests they are somehow elevated above the normal rules of publicity," he stated. "Their money is somehow grandly significant."

"The media are always looking for a turning point against the Iraq War, and this ad is merely their latest daily nomination of a tipping point toward the anti-war ideology," Graham added.

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