I disagree with Vin Suprynowicz’s views about the war in Iraq – I believe we should be there. However, his assessment of the media’s coverage of the war is dead on accurate.
Isn’t it interesting the way Iraq news gets reported in our media.
A Jan. 10 Associated Press story begins: “Nine American soldiers were killed in the first two days of a new offensive to root out al-Qaida-in-Iraq fighters holed up in districts north of he capital. …
“The losses came as many enemy militants fled U.S. and Iraqi forces massing in Diyala” — a lot of those guerrillas fleeing north into the province of Salahuddin — AP correspondent Christopher Chester continues.
Read down to the seventh paragraph — halfway through the story. There, we finally learn that our troops “killed 20 to 30 insurgents in the first two days of the operation,” including some in attacks in Salahuddin province.
Now, I’m one who thinks we shouldn’t be in Iraq, at all. In the end, we’ll tacitly endorse some strongman who’ll let us maintain a few military bases in the region — a deal we probably could have cut with Saddam Hussein. Then we’ll declare “victory” and come home.
But if the news report above had been written by the kind of reporters who covered our advance through German-occupied France in 1944, I’ll bet it would have started off:
“Badly disciplined enemy fighters dressed in dirty rags, abandoning the women and children they had vowed to protect, scampered like scared rabbits ahead of advancing American soldiers and their allies in Diyala Province this week. They thought they could find safety in Salahuddin province to the north, but Maj. Gen. Mark P. Hertling’s boys were ready for them there, too. Hertling estimates 20 to 30 enemies died, despite the fact they ran like shrieking monkeys ahead of a forest fire.
“Nine American soldiers died, six in a booby-trapped house in Diyala. The reason American soldiers die in booby-trapped houses, soldiers at the front explained, is because our rules of engagement place the protection of civilians — even those who have harbored the enemy — above the safety of our own boys. Otherwise, neighborhoods could be ‘cleared’ by artillery fire, rather than more dangerous house-to-house searches designed to spare civilian lives.”
The newspaper stories on June 7, 1944, didn’t lead off, “Thousands of Americans died on some beach in France yesterday,” implying Congress should investigate how those sad sacks in the U.S. Army had bungled things again, did they? No, I think they said something more like, “The issue is not yet decided, many brave boys gave their lives yesterday, but the liberation of Europe has begun. Our guys hit the beaches at dawn, overran all opposition by noon, and kept on going.”
Each way of reporting the news is “true.” But the second version gives you a little different feeling about how things are going, doesn’t it?
He continues from there and it’s worth your time to pop over and read what he says. Another hat-tip to freema for pointing me to this article!