Is the US Media Leading America into Another War?
In the past, war reporters bravely followed soldiers into the jaws of war. Today, it looks like the soldiers are embedded in the media instead, simply going along for the story.
This article asks a simple question that unfortunately has no simple answer: “Where should media publications draw the line when it comes to using ‘anonymous sources’ to substantiate their news reports, especially ones that risk skewing public opinion in favor of yet another disastrous war?”
The bitter lesson that the American people thought they had learned from the War in Iraq was that it is essential to question, question and question again the information that our politicians and media organizations feed us before we jump headlong into yet another war. Never again, we shouted in practically one voice, would we allow our leaders to loll us to sleep with scare tactics as they sow the seeds for yet another costly military campaign. But that was yesterday, and the public memory is a notoriously short one. Thus, the nightmare of war is happening all over again.
In the afterglow of the misguided “Mission Accomplished” celebrations, after it became embarrassingly clear that there were no WMDs in Iraq, the American media machine (with no small help from the rabble-rouser filmmaker Michael Moore, courtesy of his film “Fahrenheit 9/11”) publicly flagellated itself, vowing that it would never again accept an argument for war sitting down.
At the same time, the equally complicit American people were free to debate the ugly fact that we took our eye off the ball long after the US military was already bolted down in Baghdad for the long haul. And this exercise in sheer futility we proudly, pompously called “democracy in action.”
Today, the US media is not only standing up in the face of yet another Middle East mishap, quickly spiraling into a funnel cloud in Pakistan, but is actually leading the military march to it. This is a far cry from the Vietnam days, when newspapers vigorously questioned the behavior of the US military. And once again there is hardly a peep from MainStreet, USA, as the drumbeat for more war intensifies.