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Carried over from POWERLINE

MSNBC, CNBC Refuse to Run Pro-War Ads

We wrote here about the television commercials that Freedom’s Watch has produced, featuring veterans and their families, that urge Congress and the public to continue supporting the Iraq war. The commercials are well done, and convey the simple message that the Iraq war is important and winnable, and that we should allow our troops to see the mission through. The ads are appearing in the context of a blizzard of anti-war ads by left-wing groups, intended to pressure Senators and Congressmen into pulling the plug on the Iraq effort.

Freedom’s Watch has placed its ads on Fox and CNN, but CNBC and MSNBC have refused to run the ads. Ari Fleischer wrote this morning on behalf of Freedom’s Watch to let us know that CNBC and MSNBC have stubbornly refused to air the pro-war ads, even though they have run issue ads on other controversial topics. Freedom’s Watch has written to CNBC and MSNBC to protest their decision; here is the text of that letter:

John Kelly
Senior Vice-President of NBC News Network Sales
30 Rockefeller Plaza
12th Floor
New York, NY 10112

Dear Mr. Kelly,

We understand that MSNBC and CNBC (the “Networks”) are refusing to sell advertising time to Freedom’s Watch (“FW”) to air a series of educational advertisements. It is our understanding that the purported basis for the denial is a Network policy denying access to groups that wish to sponsor advertising on controversial issues of public importance.

Given your recent history of airing such ads (see below), we must wonder if your denial to FW is a subjective decision because the network officials disagree with the FW ads’ message? If you continue to refuse to air FW’s advertisement we request an explanation of your basis in writing or station policy within two (2) days from the date above as time is of the essence.

FW has requested time on your networks to air advertisements discussing the War Against Terrorism. Your reporters and commentators discuss this issue on your programs at every hour of the day so you clearly agree this is an issue of great public importance. FW’s advertisements, to be sure, present a view of this debate that rounds out your coverage. These ads feature Iraq War Veterans and their families discussing their sacrifices in personal terms and their belief that we must allow the military time to complete its mission in Iraq and seek victory. This is a side of this issue that should not be silenced by national cable networks. We believe that rather than censor these American heroes, you should let the American public hear their story.

As noted above, it’s troubling that the Networks appear to be airing messages on issues on a selective basis. Our research indicates that your network has accepted and aired advertisements dealing with controversial issues of national importance in the recent past. For example, the Networks aired an advertisement entitled “Shameless Politicians” sponsored by Move America Forward regarding the war on terror in October 2004. In November 2006, the Networks aired advertisements sponsored by the American Medical Association entitled “Patient Voice” concerning the controversial issue of access to health care and coverage for the uninsured. During July 2007, the Networks aired advertisements sponsored by the Save Darfur Coalition. Your history of airing other issue advocacy advertisements makes the denial of FW advertisements troubling and raises the issue of whether your denial is based on an editorial disagreement with FW’s message.

These ads are about important issues that will shape our national security policies for years to come. These ads present a point of view that your viewers are not now receiving.

Your viewers deserve to hear all sides of this issue so that they can make informed judgments about the future of their country.

Thank you for your prompt attention to this request. Please respond to me through Larry Weitzner at Jamestown Associates.

Very Truly Yours,

Bradley A. Blakeman
President and CEO

Freedom of speech: at some of our cable networks, you can’t even buy it! We’ll follow up with any response that may be forthcoming from NBC.


  1. Note that the second comerical was from Petty Offier 3rd Class Youngblood….oh and if you cant read the number to contact Congress, here it is 1877.222.8001. WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?

  2. These messages need to be allowed on the airways. People should make their own decisions and not be spoonfed media hype under the guise of fair, objective reporting. 877-222-8001 what are you waiting for is right–what are you waiting for?!! Cowboy up!

  3. Free speech seems only to apply when it’s something they agree with. Thank God for the bloggers. Otherwise we wouldn’t know what in the hell is going on. Just get the skewed view of the left.

  4. A rather small group of criminals with a an asinine point of view organized a series of terrorist attacks against the United States. Nothing more.
    Bush turned it into a massively expensive insurgency war that we, (as stated by all political quarters, as well as the joint chief), can never militarily win.
    A repeat of Vietnam loss and humiliation, once again the fault of the republican party and “American political conservatism”, in general is GOING to occur. As stated, there is NO other outcome militarily possible.
    This unnecessary war must end before the general election. Politicians and businessmen perpetuating and proliferating this war must be brought to justice before the American people. NO IRAQIS should be brought to the United States as our military withdraws, simply so that we do not bring terrorists here. The insuring slaughter, if any, must be placed directly upon the heads of those whom ordered the invasion of Iraq in the first place, against all advice and reason , from every corner of the globe.
    These adds, are nothing more than the desperate political use of our young military people, and their lack of understanding of the overall geopolitical strategic picture, for the republican party to save face for their demonstrably ignorant and arrogant leadership philosophy, that if left to continue unopposed, might very well alienate the United States and thus destroy our country.
    I am not impressed.

  5. Thanks for sharing Major. Thanks also for your dedication to our Country and way of life. Your website has been a great source of information about our troops. Your efforts on behalf of wounded troops, sick kids, and helping protect our War memorials is noted and appreciated. You are an inspiration to many of us who follow OMV.

  6. I will tell you what doesn’t impress me, someone coming in and trying to use big ole words to be impressive, yet can’t even spell his supposed small little name right. What is is, Brain or Brian?
    Rest assured there BrAin, our troops understand perfectly what they are doing. So sleep well, your back is being covered by non cowards.

  7. I’m not savy about youtube but someone has corrupted one of the ads there to substitute “die for Israel” in print over a montage of all the veterans and gold star moms, with the background music playing “kill a jew”. Jerks–can’t handle rational debate so have to viciously vandalize.

  8. I have met the soldier in the first video, and have talked at length to him and his wife. John STILL believes in the President and STILL believes in the mission…and Katie supports her husband 100%.

  9. The refusal to play these adds demonstrates their allegiance to the propaganda of our enemy.
    Adhering to the cause of the enemy is the traditional definition for an enemy.
    How much more betrayal do we suffer before we start treating them as the enemy they have chosen to become?

  10. I don’t think “Faith in the president” is a good idea. Faith in the Constitution and America in general would be a far better method of not becoming disillusioned. Though even that is starting to slip away from the everyday American. All because of this Quagmire that was never going to be a quagmire according to…..the president. Not to mention a few dozen other brain dead presidential statements.

  11. I met John Wroblewski at the Freedom Concert on Tuesday. Mr. Wroblewski lost his son in Ramadi.
    He told me he had just finished taping one of these commercials for Freedoms Watch. I can’t wait to see it. People like that need to be heard.
    people like bRaIn sAnChEz need to STFU and let the adults run things. Does your mother know you are using her computer?

  12. In a day that patriotism is looked down upon I am ever so thankful that there are still those of us who are glad that we are Americans and that we are not ashamed to stand up for what is not only fight for our freedom but for the freedom of future generations. My 6 children and I loved the commercials. Keep up the fight! It is not in vain!

  13. I’m a proud Marine Mom, my son has fought in Iraq and will be going back, he believes in the mission and his Commander in Chief. He believes enough that he reenlisted for another four years. I’m glad these commercials are being shown. It’s about time someone let the brave men and women who have risked it all or their families express their opinions. I’m so sick of Nancy Pelosi and her party saying they speak for me because they don’t. I stand for America and what’s right for our country, they’re just a bunch of cowards who want to tuck tail and run when the going gets rough. We have to stand and fight, finish this war and protect our country and it’s citizens. Lucky for us there’s still brave men and women willing to do what needs to be done.

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