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The duplicity in the heart of every leftist journalist

McQ at BlackFive is countering a common leftist meme:

One of the most enduring themes of the Viet Nam era was that of the badly damaged Vietnam vet who came home and created mayhem - all because of his experiences and training.  It was a myth that died hard only because the war was so unpopular and so many people wanted to believe it.

BG Burkett in his book Stolen Valor, completely takes all the underlying premises that supported that myth apart with facts and statistics.  I don't have time to relate them all but I cannot recommend that book highly enough.

That said, this article by Luke Mogelson in the New York Times Magazine (via PJ Tatler) entitled "The Beast In The Heart Of Every Fighting Man" is a travesty.  It's subhead gives you a clue why:

The case against American soldiers accused of murdering Afghan civilians turns on the idea of a rogue unit. But what if the killings are a symptom of a deeper problem?

Instead of telling the story of the now infamous "kill squad" from the 5th Stryker Brigade out of Ft. Lewis WA, and the reasons for their actions and activities, Mogelson does what many hacks do and tries to conflate what happened in a single platoon out in the middle of nowhere in Afghanistan with a problem that infects the entire military.

Granted - no, stipulated - war is hell, it changes people, it is something which anyone who has ever experienced it up close and personal would never wish on another person.  And yes, there are stresses that come from multiple deployments, leaving your family behind and watching men you think more of than anyone in the world die in action.  But those stresses aren't unique to these wars.  Yes, multiple deployments are fairly unique.  But then the alternative is the duration - which my parents did in WWII - 4 years of war, from beginning to end.

But that's not the point of the article.  Mogelson does a credible job of telling the "kill squad" story.  It's a horrible story in which a deviant but charismatic junior leader, in an isolated outpost, talks some impressionable squad members into doing the unthinkable all while the weak leadership in charge of the platoon failed in their roles.

Had he left it here, I could actually find myself saying nice things about it. It is a story that must be told.

But he didn't leave it there.

Go read it all then pass it on.  I consider it necessary.


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Comments (11)

The NYT is so right. They... (Below threshold)
hcddbz:

The NYT is so right. They do a better job of making men.
I recall how we created the Continental Press Corp.
The men who wrote at Bunker hill.
They men who wearing white linen walked bodily a press room full of inkwells and proclaimed Damm the wells full speed ahead!

While surrounded on all sides by anger editors said Surrender we have not yet begun to fight!

In WW1 I remember the call for press men to fight the Germans.

They saw NYT reporters and Belleau Wood that cause the harden German Army to exclaim Devil Press.

Before we got involved in WWII I remember the Flying Typist.

The editors who stormed the beaches of Normandy (Of Course the NYT safe at home in the USA did reject the printing of NAZI concentration camps)

Yes the press has fought hard for the freedoms it has.
Publishing all our secrets but protecting climate gate.

NYT learn these words
DUTY HONOR COUNTRY.
Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen Marines are people.
Most of them good some bad.
Just like society has gang bangers, rapist murders and thieves we get a few F***ups. We try and weed them out in Basic but some of the screw ups get through.
That why we have NJP and the UCMH to hold them accountable and punish them.
The same press that complains about the DoD is the same one that complains when the Military imposes discipline.


A free society needs a strong disciplined military as well as free press, both are accountable to the people. The Press has not been doing it job, it become Pravda.

While men and women have in time of war left the comfort of home and taken up the Mantel to fight for a free and democratic republic something we been doing since 1775.

NYT learn these words.
Duty, Honor Country
Always Faithful
Patriotism
Accountability
Discipline
Service.

The NYT is so right. They... (Below threshold)
hcddbz:

The NYT is so right. They do a better job of making men.
I recall how we created the Continental Press Corp.
The men who wrote at Bunker hill.
They men who wearing white linen walked bodily a press room full of inkwells and proclaimed Damm the wells full speed ahead!

While surrounded on all sides by anger editors said Surrender we have not yet begun to fight!

In WW1 I remember the call for press men to fight the Germans.

They saw NYT reporters and Belleau Wood that cause the harden German Army to exclaim Devil Press.

Before we got involved in WWII I remember the Flying Typist.

The editors who stormed the beaches of Normandy (Of Course the NYT safe at home in the USA did reject the printing of NAZI concentration camps)

Yes the press has fought hard for the freedoms it has.
Publishing all our secrets but protecting climate gate.

NYT learn these words
DUTY HONOR COUNTRY.
Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen Marines are people.
Most of them good some bad.
Just like society has gang bangers, rapist murders and thieves we get a few F***ups. We try and weed them out in Basic but some of the screw ups get through.
That why we have NJP and the UCMH to hold them accountable and punish them.
The same press that complains about the DoD is the same one that complains when the Military imposes discipline.


A free society needs a strong disciplined military as well as free press, both are accountable to the people. The Press has not been doing it job, it become Pravda.

While men and women have in time of war left the comfort of home and taken up the Mantel to fight for a free and democratic republic something we been doing since 1775.

NYT learn these words.
Duty, Honor Country
Always Faithful
Patriotism
Accountability
Discipline
Service.

contra HCDBBZ's post, I fee... (Below threshold)
James H:

contra HCDBBZ's post, I feel compelled to point out that over time, a number of journalists have been severely injured or killed while doing their jobs in war zones.

Running into a firefight armed with a pen and a camera takes a level of guts that I certainly don't have.

Yes, multiple deployment... (Below threshold)
Chico:

Yes, multiple deployments are fairly unique. But then the alternative is the duration - which my parents did in WWII - 4 years of war, from beginning to end.

Who's slighting the sacrifice of troops today? The press, or this a-hole?

Don't know what his parents did, but the war for the USA lasted less than 4 years - December 1941 - August 1945. So he's a liar right off. In Europe, it was much less than 3 1/2 years, functionally from October 1942 (Operation Torch) until May 1945. Ground units were rotated off the line or rested after island hopping campaigns. Few troops in WWII had more than one year cumulative combat time.

Contrast that with the experience of a typical infantry NCO who enlisted in September 2001. If Army, he's deployed 2-3 times to Iraq for 12-15 months and a couple times to Afghanistan. That is about five years of having to go outside the wire and brave IEDs and ambushes, plus indirect fire while he's on his base "resting."


I believe the term 'leftist... (Below threshold)
LeBron Steinman:

I believe the term 'leftist journalist' is what's referred to as a redundancy.

The failure of the left's m... (Below threshold)

The failure of the left's mental process goes all the way back to 18th century.

http://theeveningchronicle.blogspot.com/2011/02/sadness-of-left-inability-to-make.html

Mogelson conveniently overl... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

Mogelson conveniently overlooks situations where US forces did not kill someone, and suffered the consequences.

During Desert Storm a group of SF was inserted into Iraq. They were discovered by a group of children. The unit could have killed them but did not. The unit ended up in a running gun battle until they could be extracted.

A Seal Team in Afghanistan was discovered by goat herders. They could have been killed, but where not. The herders alerted the local Taliban and all but one of the Seals was killed.

Mogelson probably already has a place on his shelf ready for his Pulitzer Prize.

James H.My point is ... (Below threshold)
hcddbz:

James H.
My point is simple we need an accountable press and Military.
The US Military has fought and died to ensure freedom.
There is no press without Military there is no America without the the Continental Army. The press covers history for the most part shapes it sometimes but it the Military job maintain our freedom and they always have an active role paid in Blood.

The Press did not fight they accompany and if they get caught guess who gets sent into rescue them? My point was not to question those those who accompany out men into combat but those petty little craps that harp on any dead and besmirch warriors.

Good order and discipline is helps to prevent this. However how often does the press and promote subversive attitudes?

HC: "Accompany" o... (Below threshold)
James H:

HC:

"Accompany" or "fight" is a bit irrelevant to a journalist or soldier who's dead. Either way, you're not coming back.

Newsmen are lazy liars. I ... (Below threshold)
ThomasJackson:

Newsmen are lazy liars. I saw them at the Continental making up stories following the follies. I saw Broder get bamboolzed in Salvador. They don't investigate. They don't go in country. They never, never check the facts. Worse they don't have the balls to have actually served. No wonder their articles are so incredibly full of errors.

But their fiction is great. They are also expert at projection.

james H.Ok let me ... (Below threshold)
hcddbz:

james H.

Ok let me ask you a question. When we stormed the beaches of Normandy was it the Military with weapons who fought and invaded Normandy or the Press Corp. What was more important to the outcome of that day? The Soldiers, Sailors, Marines or hitting the beach with 100,000 reporters armed with type writers. They might have bravery but they do not matter to the outcome of the battle. That is unless they leak information that might be used by the enemy.

We had some really great military reporters in WWII. They actually were ,biased in that the loved America and the American fighting man.





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