When the Today show sprung a surprise this morning -- an unannounced trip to Iraq by Matt Lauer -- one US soldier had a little surprise of his own for Today and the media at large.
Lauer interviewed a group of soldiers at Camp Liberty in Baghdad, and at one point asked about the state of morale. After getting two responses to the effect that morale was good, Lauer had this to say:
"Don't get me wrong, I think you're probably telling the truth, but there might be a lot of people at home wondering how that could be possible with the conditions you're facing and with the insurgent attacks you're facing. "
If Lauer was the advocate for the anti-war case, he then made the cardinal mistake that no advocate should make: asking a question to which you don't know the answer.
Asked Lauer: "What would you say to those people who are doubtful that morale could be that high?"
Captain Sherman Powell nailed Lauer, the MSM and the anti-war crowd with this beauty:
"Well sir, I'd tell you, if I got my news from the newspapers also I'd be pretty depressed as well!"
Powell went on to add that, while acknowledging the difficulties the media face in getting out into the field in Iraq,
"For those of us who have actually had a chance to get out and meet the Iraqi Army and Iraqi police and go on patrols with them, we are very satisfied with the way things are going here and we are confident that if we are allowed to finish the job we started we'll be very proud of it and our country will be proud of us for doing it!"