Posted by Curt on 5 March, 2006 at 2:06 pm. 1 comment.


Great piece written by Ralph Peters today where he describes looking for that Civil War the MSM has been breathlessly reporting about in Iraq, and failing miserably in finding the darn thing:

I’m trying. I’ve been trying all week. The other day, I drove another 30 miles or so on the streets and alleys of Baghdad. I’m looking for the civil war that The New York Times declared. And I just can’t find it.

Maybe actually being on the ground in Iraq prevents me from seeing it. Perhaps the view’s clearer from Manhattan. It could be that my background as an intelligence officer didn’t give me the right skills.

And riding around with the U.S. Army, looking at things first-hand, is certainly a technique to which The New York Times wouldn’t stoop in such an hour of crisis.

Let me tell you what I saw anyway. Rolling with the “instant Infantry” gunners of the 1st Platoon of Bravo Battery, 4-320 Field Artillery, I saw children and teenagers in a Shia slum jumping up and down and cheering our troops as they drove by. Cheering our troops.

All day – and it was a long day – we drove through Shia and Sunni neighborhoods. Everywhere, the reception was warm. No violence. None.

And no hostility toward our troops. Iraqis went out of their way to tell us we were welcome.

Instead of a civil war, something very different happened because of the bombing of the Golden Mosque in Samarra. The fanatic attempt to stir up Sunni-vs.-Shia strife, and the subsequent spate of violent attacks, caused popular support for the U.S. presence to spike upward.

Think Abu Musab al-Zarqawi intended that?

In place of the civil war that elements in our media declared, I saw full streets, open shops, traffic jams, donkey carts, Muslim holiday flags – and children everywhere, waving as our Humvees passed. Even the clouds of dust we stirred up didn’t deter them. And the presence of children in the streets is the best possible indicator of a low threat level.

[…]Help’s on the way, if slowly. The Iraqi Army has confounded its Western critics, performing extremely well last week. And the people trust their new army to an encouraging degree. The Iraqi police aren’t all the way there yet, and the population doesn’t yet have much confidence in them. But all of this takes time.

[…]So why were we told that Iraq was irreversibly in the throes of civil war when it wasn’t remotely true? I think the answers are straightforward. First, of course, some parties in the West are anxious to believe the worst about Iraq. They’ve staked their reputations on Iraq’s failure.

But there’s no way we can let irresponsible journalists off the hook – or their parent organizations. Many journalists are, indeed, brave and conscientious; yet some in Baghdad – working for “prestigious” publications – aren’t out on the city streets the way they pretend to be.

They’re safe in their enclaves, protected by hired guns, complaining that it’s too dangerous out on the streets. They’re only in Baghdad for the byline, and they might as well let their Iraqi employees phone it in to the States. Whenever you see a column filed from Baghdad by a semi-celeb journalist with a “contribution” by a local Iraqi, it means this: The Iraqi went out and got the story, while the journalist stayed in his or her room.

And the Iraqi stringers have cracked the code: The Americans don’t pay for good news. So they exaggerate the bad.

And some of them have agendas of their own.

A few days ago, a wild claim that the Baghdad morgue held 1,300 bodies was treated as Gospel truth. Yet Iraqis exaggerate madly and often have partisan interests. Did any Western reporter go to that morgue and count the bodies – a rough count would have done it – before telling the world the news?

I doubt it.

Have you read ANYWHERE in any MSM outlet the fact that Iraqi citizens are cheering our troops?? None, nada, zip, you will not find one mention of it.? Why is this?? Ralph lays it out pretty well, bad news sells.? But there is obviously an agenda at work here also.? Most reporters are liberals, as many polls have shown, and they hate Bush.? To admit that the Iraqi war is going well is to admit their believes are wrong.? So they cherrypick the information coming in and put it together in such a way as to verify their believes.

Most reporters view the audience as dumb, uneducated, uninterested, and having a short attention span.? So why should they report the truth when they can report something that will make the average joe turn against their enemy, George W. Bush.

Other’s Blogging:

Most reporters view the audience as dumb, uneducated, uninterested, and having a short attention span. So why should they report the truth when they can report something that will make the average joe turn against their enemy, George W. Bush.

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