Home     Writers     Op/Ed     Book Reviews     News     Bookstore     Photoshops     Submit     Search     Contact Us     Advertise  
  You are here: 

Sun

11

Feb

2007

Catapulting the Propaganda at the New York Times
Sunday, 11 February 2007 11:11
by Chris Floyd

It is interesting — in a "watching the Hindenburg explode" sort of way — to see the machinations behind the latest war-prop piece from Michael "Call Me Judy" Gordon in the New York Times. In "Deadliest Bomb in Iraq Is Made by Iran, U.S. Says," Gordon breathlessly retails the "broad agreement among American intelligence agencies" that "the most lethal weapon directed against American troops in Iraq is an explosive-packed cylinder that United States intelligence asserts is being supplied by Iran."

Indeed, that last phrase is the entirety of his first paragraph: a bold and absolutely unqualified assertion, without even the fig leaf that usually adorns the pipelining of White House propaganda by the corporate press, the homely tag, "officials say." (Although the headline writer, perhaps a bit abashed by the way Gordon — and the editors who approved the story — have so quickly and cravenly reverted to their pre-war stance of servility, does append the tag. For a perfect takedown of Gordon's "reporting," see the savage wit of Jonathan Schwarz here.)

But what's most notable about the unsourced story is the way it — and the White House — are now trying to conflate the Iranians with the Iraqi insurgency, in much the same fashion as they merged Saddam Hussein and al Qaeda in the public mind. Here, the trick is to focus on Iran's alleged supply of IEDs to Iraq's Shiite militias, talking of their deadly effectiveness against American soldiers — while scarcely noting the fact that the overwhelming number of attacks against the "Coalition of Aggression" come from the Sunni insurgents. What then are the headlines, the soundbites for the public?  Iran... IEDs... deadly... insurgency... kill Americans." The intended effect, of course, is to convey the impression that Iran is driving the Iraqi insurgency that is now killing Americans in record numbers.

But the story is also significant for what it doesn't spell out, but clearly implies. Assuming for a moment the highly unlikely possibility that the Bushist security organs are actually telling the truth or even something like it in this instance — given their repeatedly demonstrated propensity to lie and lie and lie again when the Bossman wants a war — we are left with an extraordinary claim by the Bush Administration: that their own allies have turned against them and are now killing American soldiers with sophisticated weapons.

For who are the "Shiite militias"? They are the armed wings of the political factions that now run the Bush-backed Iraqi government, elected in an electoral process designed by the Bush Administration that guaranteed the rise of these extremist sectarian armed cliques to power. The Shiite militias ARE the Iraqi government — or at least, they are part of that government's many contentious factions. If they have power, if they operate with impunity — with or without weapons supplied by the long-time allies in Iran, with which most of the Iraqi Shiite factions have a relationship going back decades — then it is because these factions have been and are now being empowered, armed, funded, trained and supported by the Bush Administration.

This is what the Bushists are tacitly admitting when they claim that the Shiite militias are fragging their ostensible American allies with Iranian weapons. They are saying that even the factions "liberated" and empowered by the American invasion are now attacking and killing U.S. soldiers, with even more virulence than the Sunni insurgents. They are saying that Bush is now "surging" more soldiers into a situation where every single armed faction in the Iraqi conflict is targeting and killing Americans, including those factions armed and funded by the Americans themselves.

This is a remarkable confession. And it represents yet another of the many overwhelming reasons to bring Bush's bloody Babylonian escapade to a halt without further delay.  The most compelling reason, of course, is the fact that the invasion was a war crime from the word go and every second that it continues is a furtherance and compounding of that original sin. But even by the viscera-smeared lights of the war's own proponents, to have reached the place where the very people you have empowered are killing your troops is surely the end of the road.

But of course, this is imputing a logic to the Bushists' pipelining that it does not possess. If you pressed them, they would not admit that Gordon's story is a confession that the factions that make up the Iraqi government are now killing Americans. They are simply throwing out these charges in an increasingly frenzied attempt to "justify" their planned attack on Iran. They don't care whether there is any substance or logical consistency to the charges or not — although they obviously realize that they will have to frame their bogus war case with slightly more plausibility this time around. (Hence Gordon's anxious, earnest assurance that some of the unsourced and unquestioned vague assertions offered in his story have come from some "American officials" from "[some] agencies [that] have previously been skeptical about the significance of Iran's role in Iraq.") They know that a "potential threat" or even "imminent threat" is no longer quite good enough to gull the rubes into another war, so they are going for the straight stuff: "Them camel jockeys is killing our boys right here and now."

No doubt Iran has all manner of skullduggery on the boil in Iran — as do Israel and Turkey and Russia and Saudi Arabia and Syria and god only knows who else. That's the way these shadowland games are played among the moral cretins who shimmy up the greasy pole of power in almost every country. "Dirty war" has long been the name of the game — and no one surpasses the sterling record of America and Britain in this regard. I've got a piece coming out in Truthout soon on the very dirty war that the oh-so-Christian Coalition of Bush and Blair are fighting in Iraq right now. Until then, let's just say that people who come from half a world away to invade a country without provocation and kill more than 650,000 of its people, steal its money, shatter its society and leave it open prey to murder, mayhem and extremism might want to think twice before casting stones at others for "meddling" in Iraq's affairs. ***
More from this author:
Immaculate Conception: A Squirt in the White House (13873 Hits)
George W. Bush's innumerable sycopants like to potray him as a down-to-earth man of the people: a man's man, tough and fearless, a good-ole-boy...
Thunder on the Mountain: The Murderers of Democracy (11875 Hits)
“Shame on your greed, shame on your wicked schemes. I tell you this right now, I don’t give a damn about your dreams.” -- Bob Dylan,...
War in Heaven: Woodward's Book and the Establishment Insurgency (12705 Hits)
Bob Woodward has long been the voice of the American Establishment – or of certain quadrants of it, at any rate. When Richard Nixon's...
Swing Blades: Don Rumsfeld Bats Both Ways (10818 Hits)
In February 2003, I wrote a column for the Moscow Times detailing Don Rumsfeld's personal – and profitable – connection with North Korea's...
Red October: Killing the Truth in Moscow (11836 Hits)
I. Early October can be dismal in Moscow. The short, harsh summer is over, the brief and beautiful refreshment of September has passed,...
Related Articles:
Catapulting the Propaganda with the Washington Post (11853 Hits)
by Chris Floyd The ever persipacious Angry Arab, As'ad AbuKhalil, plucks out the hidden (or not-so-hidden) propaganda in a passing...
US-Latin American Relations: Ruptures, Reaction and the Times of the Past (11642 Hits)
by James Petras Introduction Numerous writers, journalists, public officials and academics on the Right and Left have noted changes in...
Bush’s Chernobyl Economy; hard times are on the way (9403 Hits)
by Mike Whitney In the next few months, a financial crisis will arise somewhere in the world which will jolt the American economy and trigger...
Media Alert: Patriotism as Propaganda (7141 Hits)
by Dave Edwards On December 24, the Independent on Sunday‘s front page featured a portrait of a British soldier gazing pensively into the...
It’s Got to Be Gore– Part IV: The Essential Quality that Makes Gore the Leader for These Times (4586 Hits)
by Andrew Bard Schmookler Over the weekend, a story posted on Huffington Post, and attributed to Agence France Press, quoted Al Gore as...


Add this page to your favorite Social Bookmarking websites
Trackback(0)
Comments (0)add comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

adsense

Top