Everyone I know in the US and the UK who was attacked in the media for opposing the war received death threats. Barbara Lee, the only member of Congress who voted against granting the Bush government an open licence to use military force, needed round-the-clock bodyguards. Amid this McCarthyite fervour, peace campaigners such as Women in Black were listed as “potential terrorists” by the FBI. The then US secretary of state, Colin Powell, sought to persuade the emir of Qatar to censor Al Jazeera, one of the few outlets that consistently challenged the rush to war. After he failed, the US bombed Al Jazeera’s office in Kabul.

An obvious answer is the old adage that “if it bleeds it leads”, so there’s an inbuilt demand for blood. I remember as if it were yesterday the moment I began to hate the industry I work for. In 1987, I was producing a current affairs programme for the BBC World Service. It was a slow news day, and none of the stories gave us a strong lead for the programme. Ten minutes before transmission, the studio door flew open and the editor strode in. He clapped his hands and shouted: “Great! 110 dead in Sri Lanka!” News is spectacle, and nothing delivers spectacle like war.

Bolding mine.

For all the current breastbeating about the catastrophic defeat in Afghanistan, nothing has been learned. The media still regale us with comforting lies about the war and occupation. They airbrush the drone strikes in which civilians were massacred and the corruption permitted and encouraged by the occupying forces. They seek to retrofit justifications to the decision to go to war, chief among them securing the rights of women.

It’s why I have stopped listening to/reading so much drivel said about Afghanistan, I suggest reading the whole article [no pay wall].

Hypocrisy has a megaphone and is climbing the Empire State Building.

Partisan politics, remember MSF Kunduz? Under Obama, some comments on my diaries at the time were pure partisanship.

I was reminded by Meteor Blades that this was not the first merry-go-round, Vietnam, I doubt it will be the last.

Will we ever learn?

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This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.


  1. Spoken with truth! Thank you for your honesty. Another part is the profits of war through the stock market in whom all republicans are vested in. Don’t you just hate it when your profits aren’t doing well!


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