WASHINGTON, April 24 (UPI) -- A member of Congress has called for a hearing into a New York Times story on ties between the Pentagon and military retirees who serve as TV news analysts.
The newspaper reported Sunday that many such analysts who began appearing during the run-up to the Iraq war were fed information by the Pentagon. The report said the Pentagon used the military experts in a campaign to generate favorable coverage of the Bush administration's wartime performance.
Rep. Paul Hodes, D-N.H., Thursday called on Rep. John Tierney, D-Mass. -- chairman of the Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on National Security and Foreign Affairs -- to look into the matter.
Hodes said it was unacceptable for the administration to try to "manipulate the public with false propaganda on matters of war and our national security."
Rep. Ike Skelton, D-Mo., chairman of the House Armed Service Committee, said in an online post Thursday he is "very angry about the issues raised" by the Times story.
"The story does not reflect well on the Pentagon, on the military analysts in question, or on the media organizations that employ them," he said on the Huffington Post Web site.
Skelton said the practice could call into question the public's trust in the military and the press.
"And it would be a dangerous thing for the American people to lose trust in the Pentagon, in our retired officer corps, and in the press, each of which has a critical role to play in preserving our nation's freedoms."