It is a wonder that the Blogosphere hasn’t picked up on the latest media “Frame” on the war in Iraq – that Iraq is in purportedly in the middle of a civil war - and taken it apart like the propaganda it is.
What is going on in Iraq today is a losing terrorist campaign hyped by media spin as a civil war because the public no longer believes their prior “frame” that we were losing to the terrorists . This is easily proven with a simple comparison with Bosnia Herzegovina’s real civil war in the early-to-mid 1990s. Today there are 26 million Iraqis, according to the CIA’s Fact Book. There are four million Bosnians of whom about half (two million) are Muslim.
Bosnia Herzegovina’s Muslim population lost 200,000 dead in four years from 1992-1995’s civil war with the Serbs. That averages about 50,000 dead a year of two million Muslims, about one killed per forty people per year.
If the civil strife in post-liberation Iraq matched that of real civil war in Bosnia ten years ago, there would be 650,000 Iraqi fatalities per year – say 1800 dead Iraqis a day from “sectarian strife” to match the average death rate of Bosnia Herzegovina’s civil war.
That is not happening and neither is Iraq’s “Civil War.” It isn’t even close. There have reputedly been only about 37,000 Iraqi civilian fatalities (not including terrorists - the MSM likes to count terrorist casualties – including foreign aka non-Iraqi terrorists - as Iraqi “civilian” casualties) from violence in the three years of American occupation. That would be less than a month’s losses if Iraq were suffering from a real civil war like the one in Bosnia.
The MSM is flat out lying about a civil war in Iraq just as they have lied about everything else in Iraq. They invent new lies when their old ones are disbelieved. Yet they wonder why their audience and circulation drop.
There is no question that one of the important lessons of this war for the enemy (a lesson already learned in Vietnam, but driven home now in modern form) is that the "spotlight"--i.e. worldwide and domestic US press coverage--is worth its weight in gold.
At this point in time, winning the propaganda war is the way to go for militarily weaker entities, be they states or stateless terrorists, if they ever hope to win against the US and its interests. It is actually the only way to do so at present; even the acquiring of nuclear weapons by our enemies would not really change that picture, since it's highly unlikely that any of those entities would ever achieve parity with the US on that score. Such weapons would merely up the ante and cause more carnage; they wouldn't change the general equation.
The "spotlight" is another word for propaganda ...
The Belmont Club, recapping the tumultuous events of the past few years, concludes:
It would have been surprising to discover a really simple narrative behind the events of the last four and half years. The public is only now beginning to catch a glimpse of the fantastic complexity that somehow lay beneath the placid exterior of the 1990s, an era that came to an end with everyone worrying about the millennium software bug but which failed to anticipate September 11. The emergence of bewildering detail is reassuring in this respect: the events since are not the simple contrivance of a few bureaucrats at the Mossad or the CIA. Real historical forces and not cheap conspiracies are at work, though perhaps not every politician has realized that yet.