Iraq 5 Years Later: How The Media Helped Get Us Into This War


cross posted to jack & jill politics

Thank God for Democracy Now.

Amy Goodman had on Greg Mitchell, editor of Editor & Publisher. His has a new book out called, So Wrong for So Long: How the Press, the Pundits—and the President—Failed on Iraq. In all the retrospective coverage going on covering the five years of this unnecessary war, few in the media have bothered to look in the mirror and take the due blame for driving this country to war.

We had the largest demonstrations in the history of the planet trying to stop this madness, yet few listened. The newspapers and broadcast and cable news outlets almost universally banned any voice that challenged the idea that Iraq was something we needed to do. Media outlets and personalities that fancy themselves critical of the war or the administration now, were the worst kind of journalists when we really needed them.

It's easy to criticize Bush now. It's the hackiest thing you can do. It's easy to criticize the war, but when it really counted -- before we sent people in -- most of these idiots had nothing to say. They created a very hostile environment for our politicians to do the right thing, and for this complicity in war propaganda, they need to be held forever accountable.

We should remember that these same media outlets are the ones driving the coverage and narrative of our current election. In general, they cannot be trusted. Their agenda is not our agenda. If they could help pull off the overthrow of a government, leading to the collapse of a society, the death of hundreds of thousands and the draining of the treasuries of two nations, what interest do you think they have in a substantive mediation of this presidential election? That's right. None.

I'm as guilty as anyone of continuing to prop up these grossly negligent entities, but they've not learned their lesson, and I will try as much as possible to avoid validating them. This means more linking to alternative and perhaps local media, for example.

Charlie Rangle made news years ago for proposing a military draft, as a way to spread the burden of this war more widely across society and, in so doing, end the war. I offer a more modest proposal: a military draft for elected officials and the media. If it were their kids and family members going off to commit crimes against another people, going off to get disfigured by an unjust and wasteful effort, you can bet we would not be where we are today.

Check out Goodman's interview with Mitchell below. Tell us what you think.