Via AP, WashPost Asks 'Is Santa a Military Pawn?'

The Washington Post's free commuter tabloid Express found no space to summarize the Post's Tuesday bad-news-for-Obama poll story. But in the Nation section, they did feature a story with this headline: "Is Santa a Military Pawn?"

AP reported "A children's advocacy group says an animated video on the NORAD Tracks Santa website injects militarism into Christmas by showing fighter jets escorting Santa's sleigh."

It's a rare swipe at the popular Christmas Eve program that gives second-by-second updates on Santa's global whereabouts.

The North American Aerospace Defense Command defends the video as non-threatening and safe for kids.

The kerfuffle erupted two weeks ago when the Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood said the video brings violence and militarism to a beloved tradition. Blogs and Twitter lit up with volleys from both sides. NORAD says it's a "manufactured controversy."

AP didn't ask why a group that opposed commercialism is having a cow about miltarism. Santa's sleigh and the fighter jets on either side don't have any ads for toy makers on them.

Naturally, there's no liberal label for a group that hates the media presence of both commercials and the military. Their mission statement proclaims "CCFC’s mission is to support parents’ efforts to raise healthy families by limiting commercial access to children and ending the exploitive practice of child-targeted marketing. In working for the rights of children to grow up—and the freedom of parents to raise them—without being undermined by corporate interests, CCFC promotes a more democratic and sustainable world."

The "offensive" video is below, which now has more than 280,000 views on YouTube:

Tim Graham
Tim Graham
Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis