Thursday, October 22, 2009

I Hate The War

Bob Herbert: David, the president is deciding what we should be doing with regard to troop deployments in Afghanistan. It seems to me that however one feels about this war and the war in Iraq, the environment here on the home front is bizarre. This is as weird a wartime atmosphere as I can imagine. For most Americans, there is nothing in the way of shared wartime sacrifices. There is no draft. We have not raised taxes to pay for the wars. Except for the families of those in the military, most Americans are paying very little attention to these conflicts. I’ve brought this matter up a few times on college campuses and the response has been, in essence, a collective shrug.

That's from a 'discussion' at the New York Times. And if you ever wonder why the press sucks so much, you're answer can be found above. It can also be found in David Brook's response. But let's stick with the Dumb Ass Bob Herbert for now.

Americans aren't paying attention to Iraq? Well golly, how could they?

The problem isn't the 'apathetic' public, the problem is the press. The Iraq War has vanished. You don't have to turn on the TV to grasp that.

Just look at the New York Times.

The coverage is pretty much non-existant and when it does emerge it emerges with the lies that the illegal war is over and almost over so nobody worry about it because it's either wound down or is winding down.

That is the message the press sends on Iraq . . . When it bothers to cover Iraq at all.

Now there are exceptions. The Los Angeles Times, the Washington Post and McClatchy still offer regular Iraq coverage. But you can go whole weeks without ever catching Iraq on any of the Big Three networks' evening newscasts. And PBS?

The NewsHour last covered Iraq when? Not a headline, in the 'news roundup,' an actual damn story on Iraq. When did that happen?

Bob Herbert wants to claim Americans aren't paying attention to the Iraq War.

How the hell could they?

Where are they supposed to go Bob Herbert?

CBS News website killed their Iraq page this year.

And Pandhandle, Beggar Media, so-called 'independent' media doesn't pick up the slack?

Go to CounterPunch, go to Dissident Voices, go to the Nation, go to The Progressive, go to Democracy Now!, find that Iraq War coverage.

You won't find it because it damn well doesn't exist.

So don't start screaming and finger pointing at the US citizenry that they don't know details about a war going on oceans away -- a war the press wanted and damn well sold.
I'm so damn sick of this because it's not just Iraq.

This is the press' idea of 'examination.' They pinpoint a supposed problem and then work around to blaming everyone for it except themselves. They never take their part of the blame.

Bob Herbert needs to grasp that when something's not covered, there's no reason people should know about it.

David Brooks, whom I'm not even in the mood to deal with, and Bob Herbert go on to suggest that the 'answer' is for citizens to do some form of community service.

That's the answer?

Gee, flooding the zone raises awareness. Community service? Hmm. Easy out that allows Herbert and Brooks to avoid confronting the reality that the press doesn't give a damn about Iraq.

There's The Diane Rehm Show on NPR on Fridays. If Diane's not off (with a guest host filling in), there's a good chance Iraq will be discussed in the second hour of the Friday show. Other than Diane, I'm not seeing anyone in the media who can make the claim that they cover the Iraq War as they did two years ago. Or that they even make airtime for it. It's just not happening.

This is the year when ABC decided to 'farm out' Iraq to the BBC. This was the year that TV made clear early on that they were no longer interested in Iraq. In March, as PEW pointed out, for the first time since 2002, Iraq wasn't one of the top ten stories on the network evening news. PEW has charted the decline as beginning in 2007. It should be noted that's when the American people were told to stop worrying about the Iraq War because the Dems controlled both houses of Congress. It's two years later and there are still approximately 125,000 US troops in Iraq.

Bob Herbert wants to whine that the public's not paying attention to Iraq . . . from his post at the paper that sold the illegal war, from his post at the paper that's walked away from covering the illegal war. Why doesn't Bob share how many millions the paper spends to staff Baghdad each year and then why doesn't he explain how many articles make it into print. And how about these little one and two paragraph 'articles' on Iraq that the paper runs? How about we don't count anything as an article unless it reaches at least five paragraphs?

It's over, I'm done writing songs about love
There's a war going on
So I'm holding my gun with a strap and a glove
And I'm writing a song about war
And it goes
Na na na na na na na
I hate the war
Na na na na na na na
I hate the war
Na na na na na na na
I hate the war
Oh oh oh oh
-- "I Hate The War" (written by Greg Goldberg, on The Ballet's Mattachine!)

Last Thursday, ICCC's number of US troops killed in Iraq since the start of the illegal war was 4349. Tonight? 4351.