October 18, 2006

The Pen Has Lived Up To Its Billing...

... of being mightier than the sword -- or at least, given our more modern scribe-gear, and visual media, the keyboard and videocam have.

Daniel Pipes makes an excellent point.

Soldiers, sailors, and airmen once determined the outcome of warfare, but no longer. Today, television producers, columnists, preachers, and politicians have the pivotal role in deciding how well the West fights. This shift has deep implications.

This is true. Look at Iraq, for example: We're winning the war there, but we're losing it at home, thousands of miles away from the battlefield, thanks entirely to our liberal media and scads of lying left wing politicians, both of which cadres place priority on an anti-Bush agenda over the safety of Americans or eventual total victory for our military.

This looks to be a rerun of Vietnam -- not the "quagmire" the left referred to, but the ultimate loss of a war, on "paper", that we are winning in real life.

The nature of the enemy is of course different than those we faced in pre-Vietnam wars, both that which we face in Iraq and that which we face in the rest of the many elements of the Global War On Terror. Actually, "GWOT" is PC, we are actually at war, despite the sheeplike murmurings of spineless politicians and the blatherings of partisan media, with Islam.

Today we fight against terrorists who employ guerilla warfare, albeit in its most vile possibilities -- to us, collateral damage is the accidental killing of noncombatants. To the enemy, the murder of innocents is the primary strategy and the percentage of military casualties inflicted is as far below the number of civilian deaths as the latter number is less than the former in the course of our operations.

Thus, typically, the American political left blames the Bush administration for the civilian casualty numbers caused by the enemy and spins it so "Bush's criminal war in Iraq has killed X number of innocent Iraqis". They make the President out to be responsible for the acts of terrorists, many of whom are not even from Iraq and are there to prevent democracy from succeeding in that country.

And since the liberal media rules the roost in America, all too many Americans who trust them to deliver the truth are instead fed this disinformation and believe it.

What Carl von Clausewitz called war's "center of gravity" has shifted from force of arms to the hearts and minds of citizens. Do Iranians accept the consequences of nuclear weapons? Do Iraqis welcome coalition troops as liberators? Do Palestinians willingly sacrifice their lives in suicide bombings? Do Europeans and Canadians want a credible military force? Do Americans see Islamism presenting a lethal danger?

Non-Western strategists recognize the primacy of politics and focus on it. A string of triumphs — Algeria in 1962, Vietnam in 1975, and Afghanistan in 1989 — all relied on eroding political will. Al-Qaeda's number two, Ayman al-Zawahiri, codified this idea in a letter in July 2005, observing that more than half of the Islamists' battle "is taking place in the battlefield of the media."

Read the rest of the OpEd here.

Posted by Seth at 07:18 PM | Comments (2) |

March 13, 2006

The Newspaper Of Record, Indeed!

Diana West has a spot-on commentary about the way the New York Times, once again, manages to go the PC route and ignore pertinent facts in order to whitewash the violence and the suppressed status of women that are both fundamentals of Islam.

Her commentary covers a three part interview with a New York Imam that just concluded in the New York Times.

Such journalistic jaw-droppers abound: not only gaping holes, like the one above, but also dead ends that leave countless questions that the female reporter, it seems, never thought to ask. For example, she notes, over six months of interviews, the Egyptian-born imam refused to shake her hand. "He offers women only a nod," she writes. Why is shaking hands with a woman "improper"? What does the imam think about sexual equality? She doesn't tell us. In Belgium last year, she doesn't mention, the female president of the parliament made headlines for canceling a meeting with an Iranian delegation over this same refusal to shake a woman's hand (the parliamentarian's own); while in Holland, the English-language blog Zacht Ei reported, a Muslim man lost a month's worth of welfare benefits for not only refusing to shake hands with female municipal employees, but also refusing to acknowledge their presence. This is supposed to be "the story of Mr. Shata's journey west," but the story bypasses such landmark issues.

Instead, we get a load of happy talk: "Married life in Islam is an act of worship," Mr. Shata says. So impressed were the editors of The New York Times by this load that they ran the quotation, not just above the fold, but across the very top of the front page over a gold-bathed family photo four columns wide. Does Miss Reporter ask the imam to reconcile this ecstatic notion with the Islamic custom of arranged and forced marriages, the spate of spousal abuse and "honor killings" within European Muslim communities...

The entire article is here.

Posted by Seth at 02:44 PM | Comments (2) |

October 03, 2005

Mainstream Media In Action{or Inaction, you choose}

During my perusal of today's Jewish World Review, I came upon this oh-so-true column by the great Mark Steyn about the lameness of today's media, and thought I should share it. It's titled Media Deserves Blame For New Orleans Debacle, but it doesn't stop there.

The facts they put in front of us were wrong, and they didn't talk truth to power. They talked to goofs in power, like New Orleans' Mayor Nagin and Police Chief Compass, and uncritically fell for every nutso yarn they were peddled. The media swallowed more bilge than if they'd been lying down with their mouths open as the levee collapsed. Ten thousand dead! Widespread rape and murder! A 7-year-old gang-raped and then throat-slashed! It was great stuff — and none of it happened. No gang-raped 7-year-olds. None.


Four years ago, you'll recall, we were bogged down in "the brutal Afghan winter." By "we," I don't mean the military but the media. The line on Afghanistan was that it was the white man's grave. Actually, it was the grave that was white; the man was more of a blueish color thanks to temperatures "so cold that eyelids crust and saliva turns to sludge in the mouth," according to Knight-Ridder's Tom Ifield. "Realistically," reported New York's Daily News, "U.S. forces have a window of two or three weeks before the brutal Afghan winter begins to foreclose options."

Er, no. "Realistically," U.S. forces turned out to have a window of four years, which is how long they've been waiting for the "fast, fast approaching" (ABC's ''Nightline'') brutal Afghan winter to show up. It's Knight-Ridder's news reports that turn to sludge on your lips. The "brutal Afghan winter" is a media fiction.

Go ahead, read the entire column. Next time you open up the New York Times, whose online version is now charging a subscription fee to read their op-ed's or special features, the L.A. Times, the Washington Post or any other MSM newspapers, watch CNN, CBS, ABC, or NBC news shows, think about Steyn's column, then wonder how much truth you're reading vs how much fiction.

Posted by Seth at 02:31 PM | Comments (2) |