If you’re in the news business you see this stuff all the time. I mean, when a corproate CEO is quoted as saying, “I am gratified by the performance of our frabjab-widget business unit during the quarter, when the trajectory of widget sales continued to move in a favorable direction,” you can be fairly sure that this line was written, not uttered, and not by the guy being quoted.
Now, I grant that it’s even more stupid than usual for a PR person to use the same (probably fake) quote in separate releases. And you’d think that the military could find a real person to quote. But this kind of thing is only a surprise to people who think that quotes in press releases have actually been spoken out loud by actual people, except on the rarest of occasions. —Dan Gillmor —Military Making Up Quotes? I’m Shocked, Shocked (Dan Gillmor’s Blog)
Gillmor is no warhawk, so I found his scolding of the mainstream media’s eyebrow-raising to be noteworthy.