So it is worth doing only if we have a reasonable chance of success. And we do, but I'm afraid the news media are hurting our chances. They are dwelling upon the mistakes, the ambushes, the soldiers killed, the wounded, the Blumbergs. Fair enough. But it is not balancing this bad news with "the rest of the story," the progress made daily, the good news. The falsely bleak picture weakens our national resolve, discourages Iraqi cooperation and emboldens our enemy.
Read the entire thing at the link at top, then be surprised when you discover the above is written by
Amusing. I wouldn't go so far as to blame the media for killing our troops, but the man definitely has a point. The media is of course more inclined to report casualties, mistakes, etc. - that's just the nature of the beast.
The only network, in my mind, that gives a more positive spin on events is Fox - and they get hammered for it. But the fact of the matter is it's not all bad, and it's not some kind of awful bias to suggest we're doing ok. There's such an excess of hysteria coming from the left, and the media, and there's no reason for it. Heck, look through some earlier threads. I don't mean to flame the man, or single him out, but one of our own esteemed Wieners called Iraq a "pyrrhic victory." Yeah, it's not seamless, but do you expect it to be?
I'm not trying to suggest that we don't report on the darker side of war (is there any other?) but I really do think we're losing the forest for the trees here.
1) I was the one who mentioned "pyrrhic victory", and that was in response to people who have proclaimed what is still an ongoing guerrila conflict to be a "victory". The fact is that there is still fairly well-organized armed opposition who are doing everything in their power to sabotage this effort. I hardly call that victory, simply because we removed the figurehead of the whole thing. You agree that "victory" is when we stop losing troops at a rate of about one a day, and I'll gladly remove my labeling of the situation.
2) I think that this is a necessary backlash and understandable given what ALL the media and all the spinmeisters were saying before we got into Baghdad. Before we went in and in the days after we arrived all we heard was how we would be welcomed by the populace as liberators and the people would rise up in joy at the removal of Saddam. And at first we got those images (statues falling, cheering crowds in the streets) which sated the masses, but once the darker rumblings began to emerge from Iraq, our national eye for discord and tragedy took over, and since the media, whatever bias you think they might have, they are exceedingly good at being simple-minded, went from "It's just like WWII all over again, YAY U.S." to "quagmire, welcome to Vietnam." The situation is neither as good as Bush and FNC would have us believe, and I'm sure it also not as bad as the far left would have us believe.
One solider per day is militarily isnignificant. I don't want to see anyone dead, obviously, but how many soldiers are there? Upwards of 40,000? You can't expect everyone to come home from a war, as tragic as that is.
I think the real error here was for anyone to expect that it was smooth sailing ahead. This isn't Boise that we just liberated. It's a nation whose citizens have zero experience with freedom, that likely has a fair population of fundamentalists, and which is bordered and surrounded by fundamentalists who are keen on both hurting the US and grabbing power in Iraq.
Before anyone declares victory, we have to decide our objectives. If our only aim was to oust Saddam, clearly we've achieved victory. But this is a different war than any that has ever been fought. We invaded not to seize land, but to transform a nation. Personally, I'll declare victory in this battle when Iraq is a stable country. And it's already well on its way.
Booker-prize winning writer, historian, painter, absolute fricken genius, and one of the most brilliant and influential critics and thinkers of the last 50 years... John Berger comments on Michael Moore's op-ed film, Fahrenheit 9/11.