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Marianne Paskowski

New TV Ads Hype Iraq War

August 24, 2007 12:38 PM

The government has already spent $450 billion on the war in Iraq, and now I read on ABC News Internet Ventures that some former White House and Bush administration officials have created Freedom’s Watch and are spending $15 million for pro-war TV ads.

Former White House press czar Ari Fleischer, who is on the group’s board of directors told ABC News, “There’s been a three-year silence from conservatives and others who believe in peace through strength.” Well, maybe they’ve been quiet because they no longer support a war that has dragged on for four years.

So with most Americans squarely opposed to the war in Iraq, Bush backers are now resorting to the airwaves, spending even more money to boost the President’s unpopular position to stay the course. That’s a slippery slope and could backfire. The notion of the pro-war ads already has me seeing red.

So the question for today is will those pro-war ads change anyone’s minds? I doubt it.


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Comments (28)


My personal political views lean to the right, but these ads make me very uncomfortable. Watching them, I end up pitying the speakers rather than agreeing with them. These ads will likely backfire and only cause further outrage on the left (as in MP's comments above.)

Marianne Paskowski:

Hi reposter,

I really hate these ads. There was one with a guy who lost both of his legs. He said he would go back to Iraq if he could. He referred to it as a breeding ground for terrorists. Iraq had no tie to 9/11 or weapons of mass destruction. Bush, with this insane war created the zone for breeding terrorists.

Thanks as always,
Marianne, the lefty moderate

j. sharp:

Supporting our troops? Or is this simply supporting the GOP. If this "new" group was truly interested in supporting the troops they would push for better medical care, testing and benefits here at home for returning troops. We should be ashamed that our adminstration refuses to fully support our wounded veterans, refuse to provide adequate testing for DU contamination and brain injury, allows the Pentagon to interfere with the diagnosis of these vets. It is a national shame that veterans returning from Iraq have to sue the United States government to get these benefits.

This is a GOP ad campaign that pushes for extended tours, less time at home between tours at the expense of the strength of our military. Unless they back it up with actual support for our military and demand this administration to do right by our troops.. it's all just PR.. tacky PR at the expense of our veterans. Like I said, a national shame.

Marianne Paskowski:


Hey, I'm in your camp. Check out Michael Moore's latest documentary, "Sicko." We still can't even take care of health care benefits for first responders at 9/11. That was years ago. Let's just say it, our soldiers who do survive and come back from Iraq are treated like scraps on Bush's pile of self interest. I've had it.

Iraq has oil. That's what I think this is mainly about. These ads make me sick. I can wrap myself in the American flag, but not for this.Let's get the troops home and let Iraq just self destruct and take care of Katrina victims, two years after the fact.

Thanks for your thoughtful post,


I watched a couple of Freedoms Watch ads, and they were so warped I couldn't go on. It's propaganda at its worst.

My hope is that the ads are emerging too late; maybe they would have furthered Bush's agenda a few years ago, but my hunch is that we're past the tipping point where Americans will change their minds based on what these ads present.

I believe programs like The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, a band of bloggers, YouTube aficionados and organizations like Moveon will skewer Freedoms Watch ads. And the skewerings will not only be effective, but entertaining. I look forward to that.


Advertising has its limits. No matter how hard they try, I think that Americans are still not buying this new Edsel. What would truly change my mind about this administration is if they took the 15 million and put it towards making life more bearable for the returning vets. Fat chance!

Marianne Paskowski:


I don't know about anyone doing parodies of these ads. It's hard to make light of a guy who came back missing two legs from his stint in Iraq.

Marianne Paskowski:

I wish the Bushies would have spent the $450 billion on this pointless war domestically. I really hate the timing of these rah rah ads, right before the anniversary of 9/11.


Andy Samet:

"The notion of the pro-war ads already has me seeing red."

You mean blue, don't you? ;~)

I think you can see these ads as part and parcel of the presidential election campaign. They're trying to move the needle regarding voter support for the war, which will surely be a big issue in the general election. It seems like a pipe dream to me, but even if they can move public opinion 1 percent, it could make a difference in a close election. They know it's a tough sell, so they're starting early.

Marianne Paskowski:

I saw red and yes I am blue state. We don't know if this will be a close election. Yikes, it's a long time away before we see who's running on either side.

And the GOP ad campaign could backfire. My blue-state friends are not happy with the propaganda. And yes, I have red state friend who think it's pretty swarmy.Can't wait to see Bush show up for the second anniversary in New Orleans after the Katrina disaster. That's the timing. He did squat.


Thanks for the post and keep chiming in.


Talk about a lack of any intelligence, total disrespect for the opinions of fellow CITIZENS (regardless whether they served or not), and nonsensical partisanship.

The majority of soldiers, airmen, marines and sailors would return to Iraq to see the job finished regardless of injuries. This is not a new phenomenon created by the "Bush Machine" but a fact of combat and comraderie. Shame on you for belittleing these soldier-citizens and disregarding their heartfelt opinions and views. They are definately more succinct than your tripe.

And how is a PAC's pro Iraqi Freedom commercial in any way related to Katrina? The screw-up is in the lap of Nagen, and the LA governor but most in the citizen's because of their lack of preparation and common sense to live below sea level in Hurricane alley. FEMA is not an emergency response organization. That's the state's job!

And for all you idiotic, uneducated "blue state" morons out there who think that Iraq had nothing to do with Al Qaeda, research the UN's Oil For Food program and the UNPD. Specifically al Taqwa Bank, the Islamic Cultural Institute in Milan Italy, and a man named Ahmed Idris Nasreddin.

Marianne Paskowski:


I have nothing but total regard and respect for our troops but not for the leaders who put them their in danger. This is about oil.



Again, you make a misguided accusation this time that Operation Iraqi Freedom is about nothing but oil. What information do you have to support this? Lists of U.S. government officials or companies recieving exclusive rights to Iraqi oil exports? Is the daily Iraqi oil output being placed directly into U.S. strategic reserves for our own use? Anything? Of course not. In fact, all Iraq oil contracts preceeding the fall of Saddam are going to be reviewed to insure that they comply with their constitution, new oil wealth division legislation (when/if passed), and the Iraqi National Oil Company (INOC). The contracts include companies such as Lukoil from Russia. Not exclusive U.S. rights. The only way in which oil had anything to do with the liberation of Iraq revolved around UN corruption where various unscrupulous persons (Kofi Annan, David B. Chalmers, Alexander Yakovlev, plus many others in Britain, South Korea, etc.), and known supporters of international terrorism (al Taqwa, etc.) working through the UNPD were able to funnel and divert funds gained through bribes and kickbacks on exclusive rights contracts. At least now Iraqi oil exports will be entering the global market as the exports of other countries do, thereby facilitating open access to their reserves (OPEC).

Of course, it is much easier for persons like yourself to ignore the facts and avoid doing any true investigative reporting. Just ignore the up to 400,000 Iraqi citizens that have been found in mass graves, executed by Saddam and his henchmen. Ignore the chemical weapons attacks by his regime against not only the Kurds but also Iran during the Iran-Iraq war. Ignore the people who had their hands cut-off just because they accepted U.S. currency. Ignore the thousands of innocent civilians that have been killed not by U.S soldiers, but by religious fanatics around the world. Oh, and before you say that has nothing to do with Iraq and Saddam, do some investigation into Mukhabarat and Saddam's support of Palestinian suicide bombers.

Question: Do you think you are still worthy of Bill Bresnan's accolades regarding your ability "to take on the tough issues" especially taking into consideration your complete disregard of fact and penchant for partisan, hack comments?

I know what my opinion is.

Andy Samet:

"The majority of soldiers, airmen, marines and sailors would return to Iraq to see the job finished regardless of injuries. This is not a new phenomenon created by the "Bush Machine" but a fact of combat and comraderie."

And that's why our commander-in-chief has a special responsibility not to misuse that loyalty and trust by placing them in a poorly-planned, badly-executed and ill-advised occupation.

"And for all you idiotic, uneducated "blue state" morons..."

Before you level a criticism like that, you need to bring your spelling skills up to at least a grade-school level.



A misspelled word or two and a sticky "e" hardly brings any question to my education just like your continuous misuse of the hyphen does not alone bring about questions of yours.

Regardless of your feeble attempt to disregard facts by calling out typos, the facts still stand without contradicting evidence by yourself or Ms. Paskowski, and that is the most telling part of your reply.

Apparently this "blog" lacks informative debate just like Kos, MoveOn and all the other lefty sites. A disappointment because I hoped one ran by a "journalist" could actually sustain it.

Just to set the record straight, nobody is saying that there weren't mistakes made in planning and follow-on operations. But, the execution of the war plan was excellent and completely successful thanks to the abilities and expertise of our soldiers. It's the lack of a coherent plan following the collapse of the government that is at fault and coincidentally, that is managed by civilians. Of course, any amateur military historian will inform you that poor planning is the norm in war as opposed to being the anomaly like some would like you to believe. Was D-day worth it? Was Gettysburg worth it?

Again I say, research the facts I brought up and educate yourselves.

J-School Prof:

I agree with Erik about the hyphens and the war. Come on, Andy. If you make fun of someone's spelling, you should at least a basic understanding of grade school grammar. And Marianne, it's hard to believe you were once a reporter, when you spout opinion as fact, without appropriate backup information. You sound like some sort of whacky conspiracy theorist, which I hope, is not your intent.

Marianne Paskowski:


Yes my opinions, and they are only that, reflect my and only my opinions about the ad campaign. We've all strayed off message here, to talk about the ads, which is only natural. My intent is not to create WWW-3 here. Throw the mud around, and no, I am not an expert in foreign affairs, nor are any of you. But I respect your opinions and for weighing in on the subject. That's Democracy.

Thanks, I think,


The problem is not your dislike of the ads. The problem is your espoused reasons for not liking them. You state opinion, rumor and conspiracy as fact. You don't have to like war. You don't have to like any type of armed conflict. You can abhor violence and any type of direct confrontation, always acquiesing to alternate dispute resolution and diplomacy. But these personal preferences and opinions do not change fact, do not confirm rumors, and do not make conspiracies true. If you said "I THINK these ads might be produced by a Pres. Bush supported organization but I have no confirmation of that", ok, that's your opinion. You need to understand though that the opinions and feelings put forth by the service members are theirs, heartfelt, and deserving of every respect as would be given to any other citizen. Just because you or some of your pals don't agree with the message does not mean that they are being "used" by some dark, mean organization bent on the destruction of our civilization. And these servicemen's opinions should not be dismissed as such. Instead, they should inspire curiosity into why it is that men and women who have sacrificed so much already would be willing to re-enter a situation that conventional wisdom says is lost. There are avenues of getting this type of information. It's not from government sources, FNC, or some pro-military PAC either. There are free lance, independent journalists who have spent months on end embedded with troops, U.S./UK/Iraqi, in Iraq and visited and revisited areas over time thereby seeing the different changes in the communities, and also the successes, mistakes and failures that have occurred. I challenge you to seek these sources out, to challenge your current understanding of the situation. I peronally feel that if you do this with an open mind and lack of predisposition, conventional wisdom may very well be turned on it's head.

Marianne Paskowski:


Blogs are opinions and only that. There is no reason to use the words, "I think."



A statement is not an opinion just because one would like it to be. It all depends upon it's presentation and qualifying identifiers that provide the reader with notification that what is being said is in no way fact and is based solely upon the personal prejudices and suppositions of the author.

That being said, these statements you made: "Iraq had no tie to 9/11 or weapons of mass destruction. Bush, with this insane war created the zone for breeding terrorists." and "This is about oil."; are personal opinions, assumptions, hypotheses and prejudices of your own that were presented as fact. You make no attempt in the presentation to notify the reader nor do you use any qualifying identifiers. Instead, you choose to place them as opinion after they have been identified as the falsehoods that they are.

That being said, if this opinion of yours that these service members are pawns of the Bush Administration and are being used to advance the global domination plans of oil barrons in a country that has had nothing to do with terrorism (WTC or any other) then you must have evidence to back-up what you so willingly identify as the basis of your opinion. Do you?

In my opinion, these Ads are excellent. Yet, they will not change anyone's mind on the left side of the isle because as Ms. Paskowski and her friends here have shown, they do not dwell in reality nor deal with fact. As far as centrists and right isle folks that have been questioning our efforts in Iraq? It is possible as long as they are not overwhelmed by an unwanted sense of pity for these truly brave citizens that are willing to sacrifice so much for people that so many are willing to just throw to the wolves because they are more concerned with themselves.

Also Marianne, I would like to thank you for continueing with this line of commentary. Even though we starkly disagree and are obviously coming from different knowledge bases you have chosen not to moderate this string as many lesser blogs would have done. Please show these service members the same respect by not discounting them just because you don't like who may or may not be writing the check.

Erik Marsh

Marianne Paskowski:


I am not dismissing you at all , or anyone else here. I have responded to all of your comments and those of others, whether I agree or not with what is said. I appreciate the exchange.



well, I have seen both sides of the isle. And the TV ads have restoked all of the scared little sheep from all those red states. Well, 4 years later, let see. 14 million Americans are going to lose their houses due to the Fed and mortgage industry. New Orleans is still a mess. 3,741 of
our sons and daughters have died. Iraq is a disaster. The war was a fraud. My solution is the draft, watch those red states turn BLUE! The Bush boneheads will argue for war as long as they, or their kids dont have to go, just like BUSH!!!!
My 3 Marine sons went, did yours?

Marianne Paskowski:

3stars in the window,

You must be very proud of your sons, I support the troops, but not Bush. More and more people are saying the draft should be re-instated. Not a bad idea.

Thanks for your post,


As a former Marine and Gulf War veteran, I saw nothing wrong with any your posts in this thread.

Contrary to what some would have you believe, not all us who wore a uniform love Big Government Wars or bleeding on behalf of Big Oil.

When I enlisted, it was for defense of the nation, not to pick self-serving fights with nations unrelated to current conflicts.


I wore a uniform. Did you? If you like Big Government Wars of Intervention so much, you have an alternative to distorting other people's arguments on the internet.

Try enlisting and serving on active duty instead of fronting as a member of the 101st Keyboard Commandos.

I simply cannot stand a self-righteous, chest-thumping, chickenhawk...

Sergeant James A. Landrith
USMC (1989-1995)
USMCR (1995-2001)


I couldnt agree with you more sarge. The are alot of members of the 101st KB's, but as a Navy vet with 3 Marine sons, I must point out the members of the USS Gateway and USS Dell Computer attack squadrons. All very tough behind a keyboard in Mommys house..... Frustrating!!!!

Sorry, but what is kimerikas?


Sorry, but what is kimerikas?


To SGT Landrith,

Be careful before you challenge especially when you know not of what you speak.

Yes, I myself have served.

1996-2004, Fire Support Sergeant (Forward Observer to you Devil Dogs) and COLT Platoon Sergeant.
101st Airborne and 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment.

Al Anbar province was my home for months so I sir, am no "chicken hawk" or keyboard commando. I've spent my blood, sweat and tears and friends of mine have paid the ultimate price. How dare you make the assumption to attack me and my credibility. You and 3stars. Simple minded, ad hominine attacks from those without an argument and without knowledge or facts. Attempting to stand with indignation and superiority over those with whom you disagree. Utterly appalling. Well, no surprise, much like Andy Samet, when the facts disprove your opinion and theory simply attack that which is showing you the fallacies of your own beliefs, typical.

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