It’s been an interesting war.
Too bad you missed it.
The legacy media has persuaded 54% of the American people that the overthrow of Saddam Hussein was not worth the effort – i.e., that he should have been allowed to ignore the treaties that ended the Operation Desert Storm, and to rearm.
The ascendant Democratic Party will soon attempt to translate its “concept” of “Strategic Redeployment” into plain English, i.e., “cut and run.”
Do you doubt it? Stop listening to Democrat Senators on “Meet the Press.” Attend any Democratic Party mass rally and look at the signs.
The unparalleled achievement of our armed forces – the overthrow of two terrorist states, and their replacement with democratic republics, at a casualty rate 1/20th that of Vietnam – may or may not be undone. It boils down to whether President Bush can weather the storm of criticism generated by the best planned, best executed war in American history.
But since you’ve probably missed the war our troops have nearly won, you ought to know why.
You missed it because the legacy media wouldn’t report it.
For the viewing public, this has been a war without baselines. It is impossible to understand the violence of contemporary Iraqi society without understanding the violence of the Ba’athist era that preceded it. Saddam waged two massive wars of aggression, in which a million perished. In addition, his Makhabaret and Army exterminated hundreds of thousands of Iraqi civilians, and drove millions into exile. The violence in Iraq is persistently presented out of its historical context, as though it were happening in an American suburb. But the majority of Iraqi people – Shi’ites and Kurds – feel more secure since Saddam’s overthrow, and say so in poll after poll.
This was a war of phony trendlines. Because the legacy media wanted America to lose, every tactical move of Al Qaeda was treated as a trend, while any diminution in violence was unreported or under-reported. American casualties have declined, not increased, over the past three years. To the media, that is not a trend. But a one-month spike in troop deaths is a trend. Sectarian violence that drives Iraqis into exile was a trend. But the 1.5 million increase in the Iraqi population under the occupation was not a trend. Nothing indicative of normalcy in Iraqi life interests the anti-American press.
This was a war without geography. Iraq has 18 governates, or provinces. Over 80% of the violent incidents are concentrated in four of them. Anti-government violence is virtually absent in 10 of them. Wars are about territory. The “pacified” areas in Iraq – those that accept the authority of the elected government – are large and growing. But the media doesn’t bother with maps.
Here’s another amazing fact: This is a war in which only one side conducts operations! Bombings in which “insurgents” kill dozens of urnarmed civilians certainly constitute news to American reporters. But the brilliant counter-insurgent operations that have reduced the terrorists to this level of idiocy do not. Every day, Coalition and Iraqi Security Forces raid bomb making factories, kill al-Qaeda gunmen, confiscate deadly arsenals, and rescue kidnap victims. It is a strange “journalism” that covers only one side of a conflict.
The American media will not cover Iraqi politics. No other emerging democracy has ever received the weird combination of no press and bad press, that the Iraqi democracy has received. All of the major parties in the Iraqi legislature have heroes committed to democracy, who have risked their all to create a civil society. They are wrestling intelligently with the same types of problems that every emerging democracy wrestles with – the distribution of natural resources, private property rights, federalism, and the reconciliation of factions. Instead of covering the interesting interplay of Kurdish, Sunni, Shi’ite, and secular forces, the American media has persistently taken cheap shots at everyone involved, calling them lackeys when they co-operate with the coalition, and enemies when they assert their independence. The hatred of American has led our traitor press to savage our democratic allies for no better reason than that they support us.
Economics is also curiously absent from the coverage of this war. It is hard to understand the politics of a country without understanding the economic circumstances of the various parties’ constituents. The abrupt transition of a command-and-control economy into a market economy is characterized by hope and disappointment, by entrepreneurship and unemployment; and above all, by visible, dynamic change. There are major stories that should have been told about rural electrification, the revival of agriculture, the increase in Iraqi oil export earnings, the explosion of communications (both private and public), and the reform of Iraq’s monetary and investment laws. Some excellent dual-language Iraqi sites cover these matters. The American media does not.
Generally speaking, good news from Iraq is no news – at least as far as our traitor-media is concerned. For instance, over the past month, prominent Anbar tribes entered a pact with the government to assist in the killing and capture of the terrorist groups they previously harbored. The daily results have been dramatic. The operations reports are available at the web site of the Multi-National Fore-Iraq. Did you hear about that? Or try this: In October, 2006, Iraqi civilian deaths were halved compared to September. Did you hear about that? The legacy media won’t report good news from Iraq because it is more important for them to defeat Republicans in America in November than to defeat mass-murdering jihadists anywhere and ever.
Independence, though much flaunted by our legacy press, is curiously absent from their reports from Iraq. Much of what we see and hear is rehashed boiler-plate from al-Jazeera and other organs of the hostile Sunni-dominated press of the Middle East. Much of what we see and hear is planted by the terrorists themselves, through native “stringers” who replace American reporters in the actual harvesting of news. Recently, CNN solicited terrorist input in order to “balance” its coverage.
Which leads us to our final point: Just as there have been no heroes in the legacy media’s tale – neither or troops, nor the Iraqi democrats – so there have been no enemies. It seems odd that a press so focused on the daily reports from the Baghdad morgue should find so little to say about those who fill that morgue. It seems odd that no opprobrium should attach to men who place I.E.D.s in dumpsters to kill beggars, or who bomb market places in order to kill women, or who spray schoolbuses with bullets, or who set up check-points to kill everyone named “Omar”. The fascist rot that infects Arab society inspires loathing, and is undoubtedly much of the reason for the war’s unpopularlity. But that same rot inspired 9/11, and thousands of bombings in India, Indonesia, the Phillipines, London, Madrid, and Tel Aviv. To saddle George W. Bush with the stain of Islamo-fascism, a globalist ideology that preceded him, and that his successors will inherit, is, well, thaumaturgy.
But our American journalists draw no moral conclusions regarding our opponents. Their attitude toward the war resembles that of Shakespeare’s power-hungry nihilist:
…it is a tale
told by and idiot, full of sound and fury,
But it needn’t be so. Our young men-and-women-at-arms have sacrificed much to make us safe, and to create a decent society for tens of millions abroad.
We wish President Bush and our troops in the field godspeed in achieving these goals, despite the jackal-howlings of their critics.