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    10 May 2005

    Iraq Propaganda

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    I am troubled by the willingness of our Government to feed the public misleading news, all in the spirit of making the misadventures of bushCo.TM. Domestically it is fact that this administration has engaged in more nonrational Propaganda than any that I can remember or that I have heard about. Internationally they are very suspect. Juan Cole:
    The remarkable thing about the operation was the claim by the US to have killed 100 guerrillas, a new move in the propaganda wars. The US military had been deliberately avoiding announcements of numbers of guerrillas killed. But this strategy, which comes from the scandals about over-estimates of Viet Cong killed in the Vietnam War, had left the guerrillas free to generate headlines such as "300 killed in bombings during the past week." Nothing the US had done could compete with that sort of number, which I believe explains why we now get a number. The problem with giving out such numbers, however, is that sooner or later there will be another scandal.

    For instance, are all 100 (a suspiciously round number) really guerrillas? Or are some innocent civilians who got caught in the crossfire? How would you tell, if all you have is a dead 16-year-old male body?

    The other problem with this operation is that it may raise false hopes. Probably less than ten percent of the guerrillas are foreign fighters, so even if the US could weaken their Qaim-area bases substantially, it would not stop most of the attacks. And, the Syrian-Iraqi border is so long and rugged that the foreign infiltrators will just develop new routes. One remembers the conviction that if only Fallujah could be reduced, the bombings would stop. It didn't happen then, it won't happen now.

    From an AP story this morning
    U.S. forces backed by helicopter gunships and warplanes swept through a large area of western
    Iraq near the Syrian border for a third day Tuesday, raiding desert outposts and safe houses belonging to insurgents, the U.S. military said.
    On Tuesday, fighting was reported in Obeidi, 185 miles west of Baghdad, and the two nearby towns of Rommana and Karabilah, an Associated Press reporter in the region said. He said large numbers of Qaim residents were fleeing the area.

    On Monday night, insurgents attempted to launch a counterattack 5 miles from U.S. Camp Gannon in Qaim, said U.S. Marine Capt. Jeffrey Pool. They attacked a Marine convoy with small arms fire, rocket-propelled grenades, roadside bombs and two suicide car bombers, Pool said in a statement.

    This is another attack on the people of Iraq. We have no idea what we are doing so we just devastate the area. Vietnam tactics. Also, where is the 150k strong Iraqi Army?

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