The firestorm over the Democratic National Committee’s anti-John McCain ad showing actual U.S. soldiers being hit with an IED explosion is not over.
Since Newsmax first reported the troubling ad on Monday, the controversy has been getting wide media coverage, and veterans groups are expressing outrage over the use of the footage depicting a horrific attack on U.S. troops.
As Newsmax reported, the DNC ad’s voice-over castigates McCain for suggesting that the United States may stay in Iraq for “maybe 100” years, then shows an explosive device detonating near two soldiers standing beside a palm tree. The two soldiers disappear in an explosive cloud. The video also shows images of burning vehicles. The DNC ad makes no mention of whether the soldiers survived the blast.
More details are now emerging about the ad and the footage of the soldiers.
According to ABC News, the IED explosion footage is the same film used in Michael Moore’s anti-Bush documentary “Fahrenheit 9/11.”
Democratic strategist Steve McMahon, a partner at the firm that made the ad, said he bought the footage from Getty Images, which states that the footage was recorded in January 2004.
Fox News’ Neil Cavuto covered the story about the ad Tuesday and also told viewers that the footage appeared in the Moore documentary.
The Republican National Committee sent out a release to “Political Editors” that reported on Vets for Freedom Executive Director Pete Hegseth’s appearance on Fox News’ “Your World” on Tuesday.
Hegseth told Cavuto that the DNC ad is "offensive . . . that's not the kind of word that I use lightly, but when you've got an ad that's showing an American soldier being attacked, potentially injured, and killed, we don't know, and frankly, that film was an enemy propaganda film that was shot. I mean, it's offensive that a political party, that the DNC, would use that in an ad to try to generate . . . any sort of anti-war sentiment or to try to spin Senator McCain's comments about the 100 years."
Hegseth also said the ad "strips away the dignity of the service member, of the Marine or soldier on that street corner that's fighting . . . Think of the family member back home. That may be their son or daughter that's being used in a political ad. I think this will [produce] backlash. I think most Americans don't want to see service members being attacked in political ads."
Melanie Morgan, a talk-radio host and chairman of Move America Forward, a 300,000 member pro-military organization, also issued a statement attacking the DNC ad.
“We at Move America Forward do not endorse political candidates or parties. However, we find it awful for any person or campaign or party to portray our troops in this way,” writes Morgan.
“It is anti-military propaganda that showcases America's finest and bravest as slaughtered victims. The fact that it is done in an effort to undermine support for Operation Iraqi Freedom is even more vile.
“American troops are our sons, daughters, husbands, wives, cousins, aunts and uncles. They are Americans who agreed to give up at least part of their lives to focus on something greater than themselves, and serve their nation, their neighbors, and their families.
“We believe in honoring these men and women of the United States military.”
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