Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Hiding the dead

Yesterday, the Defense Department announced: "Staff Sgt. Michael L. Townes, 29, of Las Vegas, died Sept. 16 in Balad, Iraq, from a non-combat related illness. He was assigned to the 4th Battalion, 227th Aviation Regiment, Aviation Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood, Texas." If you're attempting to figure out which unnamed death Townes was, don't bother. M-NF, which issues the "A Soldier/Marine" etc announcement with the name unnannounced "pending notification of next of kin" hasn't been making the announcements -- again.

It's why the number on US service members who have died in the illegal war stood at 3781 Sunday night and now stands at 3783 (41 for the month thus far).

It's a sick little game they play to hide the dead. They were so good at their game that the two deaths didn't even make Reuters' Fact Box Security Developments list.

You might think everyone at M-NF would be ashamed of themselves. Why should they be? The only 'battle' they see is with the press. A bunch of glorified press hacks, hidden away on a fortified base, issuing press releases for the real 'battle'.

What others might see as shameful disrespect of the dead, they see as perception management and that's the only 'war' they're able to fight in the flack corps.

Now it's not that M-NF stopped making announcements. They're still pimping their feel good news about someone taking an oath of (US) citizenship and all their other nonsense.

But hiding two deaths from the press in twenty-four hours, that's success! That's bravery!

"We kept it out of AP! We kept Reuters from knowing! We are the real warriors!"

Again, it's shameful and if there were in adults in the brass, everyone responsible would be taken to task. But there are not adults providing supervision. There's just flunkies and flacks taking orders from the White House and disrespecting the dead.

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