Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Oops - More Failed Iraq Policy

The Bush administration wanted to create a Fox News channel in Iraq that would sell their propaganda to the Iraqi people. The LA Times, in an article entitled "Unfair, Unbalanced Channels," says it didn't quite work out that way:

BAGHDAD — The Bush administration has poured millions of dollars into creating Western-style news media in Iraq, backing at least two television channels as well as training programs for Iraqi journalists on balance and ethics.

The effort has helped launch more than a dozen Iraqi channels. But the result is hardly what the administration set out to accomplish. Most of the channels are increasingly sectarian and often appear to be inflaming the country's tensions, critics say.


Homebound because of violence and curfews, Iraqis watch their world through the kaleidoscope of satellite TV. But channel surfing Iraqi-style often offers views of the country through a sectarian lens.

Click the remote, and on one channel, the anchor refers to the Sunni-led insurgency as the "honorable resistance" as images of wounded Iraqis and aggressive U.S. soldiers flash on screen.

Click the remote again, and the insurgents are described as terrorists and the speakers praise crackdowns by the Shiite-led government.

Click again, and the insurgency might well not exist.

I dunno, but Iraq news channels sound very much like Fox News to me.

Fox News sells the GOP point of view, skewers liberals, makes believe news that's bad for the preznit and his ruling party doesn't exist, plays up and/or makes up news that is detrimental to the opposition party, and riles up the Republican base with inflammatory rhetoric (e.g., "Are liberals to blame for the insurgency in Iraq?")

That sounds very much the way the Sunni channel riles up Sunnis, the Shia Channel riles up Shia and the "official government channel" plays up "good news" and makes believe the insurgency doesn't exist.

The Bush administration has essentially reaped what it has sowed. When you make a living demagoguing your enemies, sometimes they demagogue back.

Don't you see the difference? They're spreading propaganda, while we're trying to spread the truth.

(You know it's the truth because we have to pay to get it aired.)

Good article catch.

How much does the truth cost these days anyway?

I never did see how much they were paying to get those "good news" stories planted.

I hope it was a decent amount.

The truth ought to be worth something.
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