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The Media and Iraq

The Christian Science Monitor has an interesting interview with Bill Roggio about how the media is reporting Iraq.

Chinni: I know you weren't particularly pleased with the media's coverage of Iraq as of December. Has it gotten better, worse, or more accurate since then?

Roggio: In some respects the media coverage in Iraq has improved, such as the recent spate of reporting on the remarkable success in suppressing Al Qaeda and the insurgency in Anbar Province. But as a whole, the coverage in Iraq lacks context, and reporters as a whole display a lack of knowledge of counterinsurgency and the role the media plays in an insurgency's information campaign.

For instance, the success in Anbar was immediately negated when Al Qaeda conducted a suicide attack in Ramadi in early May, and the Associated Press "reported" that the attack dealt "a blow to recent U.S. success in reclaiming the Sunni city from insurgents." Al Qaeda conducted the attack to generate such an opening paragraph. This type of reporting is all too common in Iraq.

In the media reporting, the Baghdad Security Plan (the troop surge) was practically declared a failure before it even began. Al Qaeda and insurgent groups have clearly reduced attacks in the capital (even though the full complement of forces are yet to arrive, and much of Baghdad has yet to be cleared) and increased attacks in the provinces. Yet these attacks are generally lumped together. The goal posts have been shifted, and Al Qaeda achieves the desired effect - Iraq is a failure.

Read the entire piece for more ways al Qaeda and others manipulate the media to get the coverage they desire.

Update: Jules Crittenden has a good roundup of recent news from Iraq.


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Comments (6)

Delusional!!!!Bush... (Below threshold)


Bush is great, Iraq is his supreme victory & any other tale is just the fault of the media and its deliberate play into the manipulative hands of Al Qaida.

You ought to get your head out of the hole in the ground and stop playing ostrich.

The Badr Brigades have thro... (Below threshold)

The Badr Brigades have thrown in with Sistani, Sadr is calling for running al-Qaeda out of all of Iraq(after the Americans, of course?, and the Sunni Arab are already cleaning out al-Qaeda, partly because we protected their city mouse kin from Shia death squads. Who could ask for anything more.

Weider, and honorary member... (Below threshold)
Zelsdorf Ragshaft III:

Weider, and honorary member of al Qaeda, declares the war lost in spite of evidence to the contrary.
I guess it could be asked of Weider, just who's side he is on, but he is obviously not on America's side. Weider, if we lost this war, which battle or group of battles is it that we have lost. Which territory is it that our forces have been ejected from? What you know about war could be put on the head of a pin with much space left over.

"Read the entire piece for ... (Below threshold)

"Read the entire piece for more ways al Qaeda and others manipulate the media to get the coverage they desire".

You can't manipulate people that don't want to be manipulated. That leaves out the antique MSM, the dumocrats, and especially the anti-American cowards like Weider, who has a brain like the one described by John Bolton the other day. 'You can't think, Your brain is empty'.
Given a chance Weider will brag about the degree's he has from the failed college system, and ignore the total lack of education that came with the degree's.

To give the post better con... (Below threshold)
Chris G:

To give the post better context, war is fought physically on the front, and pshycologically through the media.

During WWII, the FDR administration frequently utilized propaganda films to bolster US support/morale at home to offset the bloody battles in the Pacific islands and the costly battles as the US fought across Europe block by block, starting in Normandy. FDR was a bitter enemy of Robert McCormick, the publisher of the Chicago Tribune. The Tribune published stories that the US has decrypted Japan's code in relation to winning the battle of Midway. FDR wanted to prosecute McCormick, but instead hauled the reporters before a grand jury. The Navy did not want to prosecute for fear of the publicity. the case was allowed to die quietly, but did raise the question of what role does the press have during times of chaos during a war for the minds of people.

So the tension between the media and the president is an old one. However, I think many in the press want the US to fail because Bush is the president. The line between holding someone accountable and undermining that person's efforts because one feels the greater good requires it is dangerous. The press is ill equipped to be accountable for its blunders. And in the face of media saavy terrorists, who use CNN International and other 24 hours news venues as proxies, the media is as big a player in the war as Bush or Al Queda.

Am I saying lie? No. But when terrorists and countries that sponser terrorism use the same talking points as the media, Michael Moore, and the left, one cannot deny being complicit to the harm caused. What wpuld Iraq be like now if we had been 100% on board with victory at any cost for the US, as in WWII, but opposed to the media's conduct with Vietnam and Iraq?

med1616 and Chris G have it... (Below threshold)

med1616 and Chris G have it absolutely right, the media isn't being manipulated, they're just going where they want to go anyway.
The only enemy they see is the GOP.
It really reminds me of the last days of Constantinople where the various factions saw only internal enemies.
Until the barbarians were coming over the wall.






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