Derisive diatribes about the state of the nation, nation states and swerving leftward
Civilians always die during war. But now we have CNN/FoxNews/MSNBC, etc. shoving it down our throats every day. If cable news existed during D-Day in Normandy, the invasion would have gone on for 2 years and probably wouldn't have succeeded. The Iraq war would have been over in 5 months if we kept the reporters out. Now, because it's all televised, we have to be extremely careful (we should have just wiped-out that mosque a few weeks ago) and therefore, it's taking forever to get anything done. Civilian deaths, though not completely preventable, have been greatly reduced due to technology. Study history and you'll see what I mean.
These are two separate incidents. Hersh claimed that the massacre that he witnessed resulted from a rash attitude by those in command and likened the situation to Vietnam, where there was an attempt to run up "body counts." With the paltry knowledge I have, I have know way of knowing if that's going on or not. I'm glad to have reporters on the ground (as well as Iraqis and U.S. troops discussing what they're seeing). We live in a democracy after all and democracies can't function if there are blackouts on information. There are calls to "trust" Bush. Trust is for dictatorships. In democracies, we need to always have a healthy degree of skepticism.
"We live in a democracy after all.."No,we don't...we live in a constitutional REPUBLIC. there IS a difference.But you are correct that we must "have a healty degree of scepticism"; "Trust but verify" is as important in regards to our own government as to the actions of other governments.I'm split on the question of embedded reporters...we do need an independant watchdog, but many times these "reporters" are a real problem in doing the work of an army at war. Most of them start out with an anti-military bias to begin with, and don't understand the restrictions that an active military campaign sometimes requires for operational needs, and for the safety of our troops.Given the chance,the majority of these people would give the plan of attack/order of battle to the enemyin their reporting and see nothing amiss in it. The "right of the people to know" must necessarily be restricted in a war zone. Some of those people are the enemy, they read/hear/see our news just as we do. It was one of the factors that drug the VN war on, per Gen.Giap,leader of the NVA. They were ready to call a real truce, until they saw/heard news reports on activities of people such as JFKerry("hero of the revolution" in VN BTW) and Jane Fonda and were heartened to go on fighting. The war was lost in Berkley, NYC, and SF,not on the battlefields of VN. The "reporting" of the time showed the Tet Offensive as the exact opposite of what it was; a disaster for the NVA.I have no wish to see that repeated in Iraq, but I fear it is. These "insurgents" for the most part are NOT Iraqis, and the leaders certainly aren't. Yet to hear the media tell it,it is a popular uprising against the invader. It isn't...it is a guerilla war directed,for the most part,from Teheran. A free and "democratic"(relatively) Iran spells the death knell of the Mullahs,and they know it. Thats one reason they're so anxious to achieve nuclear weapons...and John Kerry would treat them as Clinton did with N. Korea.. NK now has at least 7 or 8 NW's due entirely to Clinton's policies, but in true democratic form, Kerry would commit the same mistake and expect a different result in Iran...Israel would have no choice but to do the same thing in Iran as they did in Iraq, forstall the program by use of judicious, precision military strikes, only this time the rest of the Arab world would not sit by as they did in Iraq, and it would be a bloodbath the likes which have not been seen since 1944/45.We are at the table in the ME for the first time, and every regime in the region is now at least talking about reform...something that was unheard of prior to the invasion...Iraq is the keystone that will change the whole region, both for the betterment of the common people you claim to love so much, and for ourselves.
Sorry for the book Karlo, losing my site has really hurt LOL
Books are good so blog on. I'd disagree with you on Vietnam though. The anti-U.S. Vietnamese fighters were in it for the long haul. Ho Chi Min actually didn't think they'd acheive victory so quickly and was instead projecting a war that would drag on for decades more. There's no denying that a press and democratic institutions do, in a sense, tie one's hands when fighting a war. If we really want to be good at war, we should switch to full-on fascism. At some point though, we have to stop and ask what we're fighting for. Are we fighting to have "our" group of thugs rule over us instead of thugs of a different ethnicity, or are we fighting for democratic values. If for the latter, we need to always be careful. A "means justifies the ends" sort of mentality could lead to a permanent shutdown of democracy in the name of some never-ending war (e.g., a "war on terror").
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