The San Francisco Examiner newspaper in 1944 wrote an editorial suggesting that the Marines were operating under incompetent leadership because they were in a bloody and desperate battle for the island known as Iwo Jima. The Examiner strongly suggested that perhaps the Army, under the leadership of the media's favorite general, Douglas MacArthur, could do a far better job. This provoked the San Francisco Chronicle - a that time a paper with some sympathy for American fighting men - to respond as follows:
To slur the United States Marines in one type of operation, however, to draw odious comparisons between theirs and the type of operations conducted by General MacArthur, is to raise a sinister fantasy. To hint that the Marines die fast and move slowly on Iwo Jima because Marine and Naval leadership in that assault is incompetent is an attempt at a damnable swindle of the American people.
The Chronicle does not propose to engage in controversy over the relative merits of our fighting forces in he various theaters of war. But neither does the Chronicle propose to remain mute when United States Marines or any force on the world battle line, is butchered at home to make a Roman holiday.
It is a pity that the media of today, and several of our supposed leaders - yes, John Murtha, Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama, I mean you - cannot give our armed forces the respect that once was considered their due. It is a greater pity that when elements of our so-called intelligentsia do relapse into cheap attacks on the men and women of our Armed Forces that the Press cannot bring themselves to defend those who have given them the privilege of writing so negatively about that same military. I follow the line proposed by the San Francisco Chronicle before it decided that playing the role of Democratic Party propaganda organ as preferable to reporting news. I wish that more of our so-called elites did as well.
The Chronicle quote was taken from page 169 of Richard F. Newcomb's 1965 book "Iwo Jima", published by Signet.