I must confess that I was and am still pretty excited that Katie Couric got the CBS Evening News anchor job. I think that “news” itself is drastically changing from the standpoint of how we get it, where we get it and what it looks like. And let’s be honest here – the evening news has become pretty routine and predictable. Katie appears to me to be an admission on the part of the network news folks that some changes are needed.

But some things don’t change, like the media’s mischaracterization of our brave troops, and that is what has me red hot under the collar today… Here is an excerpt from Katie’s exclusive interview with President Bush during her primetime special last night:

COURIC: I know you care so much about the soldiers in Iraq. And when we told some of them we had an opportunity to speak with you, almost all of them said, "Would you please ask the President of the United States when can we come home?"

BUSH: Mmm. And the answer is when the mission is done. When your commanders decide you can. You know, it's interesting you said that. It's – I get a little different response from the soldiers I meet, you know? I – frankly, I've never had one say that.

In fact, they've all said, "I'm honored to serve the country. I understand what we're doing. I'm proud to be a volunteer." And – you know, I can't tell you how great the military is. It's – it's such a proud – group of people, dedicated to protecting this country and doing its duty.

I’ve been around a lot of troops and I don’t know who Katie is talking to but she is dead wrong about the lack of will on the part of the great men and women in our Armed Services. And I applaud President Bush for his honest and forthright answer.

I suppose that if you went and asked a young Lance Corporal covered in mud, blood and guts “if he’d like to go home?” Then the answer is “yes,” but I highly doubt he’d say before the mission is completed.

So let me be very clear in speaking to every soldier, sailor, airmen and marine serving in faraway dangerous places defending this nation around the world: We know what you are doing, we know why you are doing it and what you are sacrificing so from the bottom of our hearts – thank you, God Bless you and please come home soon… when the mission is complete.

9/5/2006 - Katie Couric's CBS Debut
9/4/2006 - Labor Day "Blues"