April 22, 2003

The Coming Iraqi Civil War?

In the previously mentioned A Farewell to Arms post, Christopher Allbritton talks about a rumor going round Iraq:

The marchers in Baghdad demanding a quick end to American occupation, he said, were incited by Ahmed Chalabi and the INC to stir up trouble against the Americans, so they will leave and the INC can seize complete control.

Now Chalabi is the neocons man in Washington/Iraq. His position of being the next potential leader of Iraq arose due to his extensive DC connections and lobbying. No idea if that rumor is true, but if it is then Iraq is going to get really nasty real soon. If even Chalabi wants the US out, then imagine what others think? As Allbritton points out there are a lot of ethnic groups, tribes, religions and invaders involved here. And they all want their power in a limited space.

Messy indeed. Lets see how Bush, Rove and company handle the news. More Afghanistan style ignoring I expect. But the stakes are larger in Iraq will the media be willing to step up and report? Unlike some who have given up on mainstreams media's ability to criticize the current administration I have some hope left. I think a good deal of the mainstream Bush dickriding that went on during the war was the product of the media's laziness combined with good timing on the part of administration PR machine. The admin PR people where able to keep creating new news events for the media. And since the media is lazy they went for the easy story. After a couple slow news days you could see the more balanced reporting return. But then the PR machine would hit back with new stories. Return to lazy media.

Now generating stories is hard work. Especially without an army of 300,000 people working for you to create some news. I have a feeling that the media will start hitting harder when slow news periods emerge. All of a sudden they'll need to investigate a bit to find the story. And odds are the story will sometimes be in Iraq. And it might not be pretty. I'll be keeping my eyes open.

Posted by Abe at April 22, 2003 08:21 PM


I think 1st Lt. Mark V. Shaney USMC said it best when he said:

"Responsible journalism should include responsibility for one's actions in publishing a news story in such a way that puts many other people in harm's way; has a direct result of publication of a particular story might have on other people.

"We are a people that cherish the democratic system of government and therefore hold the will of the enemy is trying very hard to portray our efforts over here, you can refute them by knowing that we are failing, even if we are making the whole world safer. "

Raymond Onnar
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very informed and interesting comments! greetings.

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