Sunday, July 15, 2007

The Republican Media- no. 3

Tom Foreman of CNN's Washington bureau on July 14, 2007 delivered a report on the cost of the Iraq war. However, while estimating the monthly cost as ten billion dollars, Foreman unfortunately commented ".... if you add in Afghanistan and all the other (emphasis mine) international anti-terror efforts."
So when did our war involvement in Iraq become part of "international anti-terror efforts?" The reasons cited by supporters of this policy, pre- and post- invasion, include: toppling Sadam Hussein (accomplished); removing "weapons of mass destruction" (chemical and biological not found); a nuclear weapons program (reported in January 2003 by International Atomic Energy Agency as nonexistent); spreading democracy throughout the Persian Gulf (Nouri al-Maliki, friend of Hezbollah and the Iranian regime, enemy of democratic Israel). The war has only increased terrorism in the Gulf and throughout the world.
Distressingly, this came not from GOP TV (euphemistically referred to as Fox News) but from a legitimate member of the mainstream media who has joined President Bush in the pretense that this war has anything to do with preventing, or fighting, terrorism.

2 comments:

Dan Bausch said...

If the report was on the cost of the Iraq war and Foreman added in the cost of non-Iraq-related costs (such as Afghanistan), then that was wrong. I suppose he thought it would make it seem even more dramatic, or purhaps that it would put it in a wider perspective, if he emphasized the amount of money thats been spent under Bush's presidency on anything classified as part of the war on terror.

In response to your question, "So when did our war involvement in Iraq become part of 'international anti-terror efforts,'" it is now widely excepted, by both Republicans and Democrats, that our main focus in Iraq should be combating the Al Qaeda movement that is furmenting violence throughout the country. Since part of our involvment is doing this, I can see how someone could classify this money with other funds supporting international anti-terror efforts, though this is of course a twisted way to look at it, since much of the money is used to stop sectarian violence and to reconstruct the country. The administration has worked hard to convey its broad, though hypocritally-selective, policy against terrorism, with the first phase being to comfront the terrorist themselves, followed by attacking supporters of terrorists, followed by creating goverments that are democratic and less likely to allow conditions that support the growth of terrorist networks.

Though the dangerous results of this policy have clearly been shown by the Iraq war, their still exists a disconnect of two different schools of thought that pull at the public. One group attempts to link Iraq entirely to terrorism, while the other struggles to remove it entirely. I believe that both are incorrect. While Iraq was not involved with Al Qaeda before the war, Iraq is now certainly a part of the war on terror because Al Qaeda is operating there, and we are engaging them. Yes, their is increased terrorism as a result of the war we launched, but that does not negate the fact that we are now engaged in stopping terrorism there.

Mainstreet Liberal said...

You're right- it is a rather twisted way of looking at it, for the reasons you state and because 1)Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia did not exist before our invasion (S. Hussein famously was antagonistic toward Al Qaeda); 2)the al qaeda organization now training recruits in northwestern Pakistan (with the acquiesence of our well-funded "ally", Pervez Musharraf)is now stronger than since roughly 9/11/01, despite the President's apparent denial; 3)the Administration and its supporters frequently state that the U.S.A. needs to "fight them there before they come here," intentionally neglecting to tell us who "they" are so as to conflate the 9/11/01 attacks, the Iraq war, and the "war on terror."
Yes, the neocons are correct to believe that democratic governments are less amenable to terrorist philosophy and tactics. Unfortunately, the government in Baghdad, soon to take a month-long vacation, is unstable and not getting less so. And maintaining American troops in Iraq is arguably antithetical to fighting terrorism outside of Iraq, given the alternative of redeploying the soldiers in the region, in part as the quick-strike force envisioned by Representative Murtha of Pa.

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