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Carlton A. Sherwood

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Carlton A. Sherwood is a journalist and producer. He is a participant in the Pentagon military analyst program is the executive vice president of WVC3 Group, Inc.. In September 2003, he and his WVC3 colleague William V. Cowan took part in a Pentagon-funded "tour of Iraq ... timed to help overcome the sticker shock from Mr. Bush’s request for $87 billion in emergency war financing." At the time, WVC3 was trying "to supply body armor and counterintelligence services in Iraq" and "to help tribal leaders in Al Anbar Province win reconstruction contracts from the coalition." [1]

The Pentagon's military analyst program

In April 2008 documents obtained by New York Times reporter David Barstow revealed that Sherwood had been recruited as one of over 75 retired military officers involved in the Pentagon military analyst program. Participants appeared on television and radio news shows as military analysts, and/or penned newspaper op/ed columns. The program was launched in early 2002 by then-Assistant Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs Victoria Clarke. The idea was to recruit "key influentials" to help sell a wary public on "a possible Iraq invasion." [1]

Reporting

Sherwood is known for his work, with two Gannett News Service co-authors, on a 1980 series investigating a fund-raising scandal involving the Pauline Fathers, and the Vatican's role in covering it up, which won the news service the Pulitzer public service gold medal. [2] In 2004, Sherwood produced the video Stolen Honor: Wounds That Never Heal which documents the viewpoints of various American Vietnam War POW's who claim that harm arose to them as a result of John Kerry's anti-war activities.

Although Sherwood describes himself as a Pulitzer "recipient" [3]the Pulitzer organization states that the public service gold medal is never awarded to an individual, but always to a news organization, for "meritorious public service ... through the use of its journalistic resources, which may include editorials, cartoons, and photographs, as well as reporting." [1]

An October 2004 interview in the Pennsylvania Patriot-News stated that "dissection of Sherwood's biography" is dismissed by him as "side issues he calls 'dust and smoke'." [2]

Sherwood and the Moonies

Carlton Sherwood is also known for his purportedly independent investigation of Sun Myung Moon's Unification Church, Inquisition: The Persecution and Prosecution of the Reverend Sun Myung Moon. Sherwood concluded that Moon and his followers "were and continued to be the victims of the worst kind of religious prejudice and racial bigotry this country has witnessed in over a century." Sherwood himself had previously worked for the Washington Times, owned by members of the Unification Church.

In a story on this book, the PBS television series Frontline obtained a copy of a letter addressed to Moon. The letter was written by James Gavin, a Moon aide. Gavin tells Moon he reviewed the "overall tone and factual contents" of Inquisition before publication and suggested revisions. Gavin adds that the author "Mr. Sherwood has assured me that all this will be done when the manuscript is sent to the publisher." Gavin concludes by telling Moon, "When all of our suggestions have been incorporated, the book will be complete and in my opinion will make a significant impact.... In addition to silencing our critics now, the book should be invaluable in persuading others of our legitimacy for many years to come."[4]

Military experience and Homeland Security work

Sherwood is a decorated Vietnam veteran who served as a Marine in Vietnam's De-Militarized Zone.[5] Sherwood formerly worked for Pennsylvania governor Tom Ridge, whom George W. Bush later appointed as the first Secretary of Homeland Security. The Bush administration has selected Sherwood to create and manage a new federal website aimed at first responders (police officers, firefighters, etc.). While working as a Ridge administration official, Sherwood directed then-Gov. Ridge's award-winning broadcast TV and radio operations in Harrisburg.

Sherwood currently serves as Executive Vice President and Director of Communications of the WVC3 Group, Inc., an anti-terrorism, security firm headquartered in Reston, VA. [3] [4] By its own account, WVC3 is most likely benefitting from the ongoing 'war on terror'. Its website describes the "fields of homeland security, domestic preparedness, and the global war on terror" as "burgeoning" [5].

Reagan Administration role

According to his profile on the WVC3 website, Sherwood "served as Special Media Advisor to the Secretary of the Navy during the Reagan Administration." [6] This is almost certainly a reference to James Webb, who held the position between 1987 and 1988 [6]. Webb is now on the Advisory Board of WVC3 [7]. These days, Webb's views on Iraq differ from Sherwood's, as Webb was a strong critic of the decision to go to war in 1991[7].

Sherwood blasts 'Presidential wannabes' for 'gleeful' reaction to US casualties in Iraq

On the 8th November, 2003, Carlton Sherwood appeared on the Judicial Watch Report Radio Show. The host was Tom Fitton, Judicial Watch's president. Sherwood had just got back from Iraq and was invited onto the show to talk (over the telephone) about the worsening security situation. [8] At about 42 minutes and 10 seconds into the show, Sherwood said:

"Every time I get up in the morning and I turn on the cable news and I see that one or two more of our soldiers have been killed it's like a kick in the guts to me, personally. But it's also a double whammy because I know what soundbite's going to follow that. And you're right. It'll be some wannabe - a Presidential wannabe, or one of their aides, carping, almost gleefully, using your word, almost gleefully that, uh, this is one more evidence of a failure." [9]

Given that, at the time, the only 'Presidential wannabes' were Democrat politicians running in the primaries, Sherwood's remarks would appear to be an implicit criticism of the behavior of the Democratic Party over Iraq.

President of Judicial Watch claimed Sherwood had "advised the President Bush" (sic)

On the same Nov. 8, 2003, radio show, at about 2 mins 10 secs into the show, the host Tom Fitton trailed the fact that Sherwood would be appearing later on in the show. Fitton's brief biography of Sherwood included the comment "he's advised the President Bush" [sic]. [10]

When Sherwood appeared later in the show, he did not rebut this claim. However, it is not clear if he was already on the telephone line when the claim was made. Therefore, he had not necessarily heard this remark at the time the show was recorded.

Carlton Sherwood's criticisms of John Kerry

Sherwood has also directed the film Stolen Honor: Wounds That Never Heal, which criticizes John Kerry's advocacy against the Vietnam War. The 90-minute film will be aired during prime-time by the Sinclair Broadcast Group network shortly before the 2004 election. Sinclair reaches 23% of the American broadcast audience, and has 14 stations in the swing states of Ohio, Florida, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin.

A relatively early example of Sherwood criticizing Kerry on this issue is a Fox News article from March 2004. In it, Sherwood is quoted as saying: "He knew as an officer that those were lies. It never happened... He was principally responsible for cementing the image of Vietnam veterans as drugged-out psychopaths who were totally unrestrained and who were a murderous hoard." [8]

Lawsuits

Sherwood was involved in a series of lawsuits involving his film "Stolen Honor."

On October 18, 2004, and August 25, 2005, respectively, former VVAW members and Winter Soldier Investigation participants Kenneth Campbell, PhD, and Jon Bjornson, M.D., filed defamation and invasion of privacy suits against Sherwood and his production company and the Vietnam Veterans' Legacy Foundation (VVLF) for allegedly misrepresenting them in the film. On October 10, 2006, Sherwood and the VVLF countersued Campbell and Bjornson for wrongful use of civil process, among other things. [11] All three cases were eventually dropped or settled without trial. [12]

On October 21, 2004, George Butler and others filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against Sherwood and his production company claiming that they owned the copyrights to the documentary films "Winter Soldier" and "Going Upriver: The Long War of John Kerry" and other photos used in "Stolen Honor." The suit was dismissed on November 23, 2005. [13]

On October 3, 2005, Sherwood and his production company and the VVLF filed a federal suit against Kerry and his Pennsylvania campaign manager Anthony Podesta, for defamation, defamation/business disparagement, intentional and/or negligent interference with prosepctive and existing contractual relations, and civil conspiracy. The suit was dismissed with prejudice on August 4, 2006:

U.S. District Judge John P. Fullam said he found no evidence that Kerry personally made any of the statements, and furthermore, found that they were protected opinions.

“I do not believe any of these statements are actionable since they constitute expressions of opinion, and must be viewed in the context of a hard-fought political campaign,” Fullam wrote in a ruling issued Thursday.

“More importantly, I am not aware of any basis for holding a political candidate personally responsible for statements made in press releases issued by his party’s national committee,” the judge wrote. (AP News)

[. . .]

The judge said that Sherwood’s suit focused more on decades-old anti-war activities than it did on the alleged defamation, and noted its self-congratulatory tone in referring to Sherwood “at length, as an award-winning journalist [*] of great integrity and renown.” (Boston Herald)

[14] [15]


Sherwood also described himself in the complaint as having been "honored with the Pulitzer Prize," contrary to the Pulitzer organization rules for award of the public service medal (see introduction, this article). [16]

Bibliography

  • Sherwood, Carlton. (1991). Inquisition: The Persecution and Prosecution of the Reverend Sun Myung Moon. Regnery Press. ISBN 089526532X
  • Sherwood, Carlton. (1982). The Wayward Shepherds. Putnam Publishing Group. ISBN 0872237869.

SourceWatch resources

External links

Sources

  1. 1.0 1.1 David Barstow, "Behind Analysts, the Pentagon’s Hidden Hand," New York Times, April 20, 2008.
  2. "PULITZER PRIZES WON BY NEWSPAPERS AND THE NEWS SERVICE OWNED BY GANNETT," Gannett website, accessed February 1, 2009.
  3. Carlton Sherwood bio, Stolen Honor website, accessed February 1, 2009.
  4. Transcript of PBS Frontline "The Resurrection Of Reverend Moon" documentary, MediaChannel.org.
  5. Roberta Leguizamon, "Stolen Honor," FrontPageMag.com, September 27, 2004.
  6. "Media Advisory," University of Kansas, April 27, 2004.
  7. "Media Advisory," University of Kansas, April 27, 2004.
  8. "Vets Slam Kerry for Vietnam Atrocity Claims," FoxNews.com, March 12, 2004.

Articles

Articles

Radio appearances

NB. This page incorrectly says that Sherwood appeared on the Nov 1st show - the information about the Nov 1st and 8th shows has been transposed.