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The Big Picture

This is The Big Picture, an official television report of the United States Army, produced for the armed forces and the American people. Now to show you part of The Big Picture here is Master Sargent Stuart Queen
The series consists of ~822 documentaries produced by the United States Army Signal Corps Army Pictorial Service from 1951 to 1971 to educate both soldiers in uniform and the American public about military concerns as well as things like historical battles, world geography, famous soldiers, the latest weapons, space exploration, strategic objectives, peaceful initiatives, and the life of a soldier. Being a product of the Federal Government it belongs to the the American people, and is thus freely available to all to copy and distribute. Most can now be viewed on archive.org
[more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on Dec 10, 2013 - 6 comments

A Fieldguide for Female Interrogators

"10. Mild Non-Injurous Physical Contact: (i.e.,“a little bit of smacky face“) Unlike other forms of contact that lead to physical injury, sexual contact is unlikely to leave scars and is more likely to induce guilt that can be taken advantage of by a good interrogator." (NSFW) [more inside]
posted by artof.mulata on Jul 18, 2013 - 15 comments

"We want you to take a picture."

This iconic photo of the first Aboriginal woman to enlist in the Canadian Women’s Army Corps was used as a recruitment tool, and "appeared all over the British Empire [in 1942] to show the power of the colonies fighting for King and country." Its original caption in the Canadian War Museum read, "Unidentified Indian princess getting blessing from her chief and father to go fight in the war." Its current caption in The Library and Archives of Canada reads: "Mary Greyeyes being blessed by her native Chief prior to leaving for service in the CWAC, 1942." But as it turns out, the two people in the photo had never met before that day. They weren't from the same tribe or even related and Private Mary Greyeyes was not an "Indian Princess." 70 years after the photo was taken, her daughter-in-law Melanie made sure the official record was corrected. Via [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jan 22, 2013 - 13 comments

Coronet Instructional Films

From the mid 40s to the mid 50s Coronet Instructional Films were always ready to provide social guidance for teenagers on subjects as diverse as dating, popularity, preparing for being drafted, and shyness, as well as to children on following the law, the value of quietness in school, and appreciating our parents. They also provided education on topics such as the connection between attitudes and health, what kind of people live in America, how to keep a job, supervising women workers, the nature of capitalism, and the plantation System in Southern life. Inside is an annotated collection of all 86 of the complete Coronet films in the Prelinger Archives as well as a few more. Its not like you had work to do or anything right? [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on Nov 1, 2012 - 41 comments

Use the enemy's own films to expose their enslaving ends. Let our boys hear the Nazis and the Japs shout their own claims of master-race crud—and our fighting men will know why they are in uniform.

Why We Fight is a series of seven documentary films commissioned by the United States government during World War II whose purpose was to show American soldiers the reason for U.S. involvement in the war. Later on they were also shown to the general U.S. public to persuade them to support American involvement in the war. Each of them is in the common domain having been produced by the US government, available online, and linked below the fold: [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on Sep 16, 2012 - 24 comments

Fight and Flight. And Cars, too.

AIRBOYD.tv has three Youtube channels: The eponymous AIRBOYD features 2000+ videos for "aviation and aerospace enthusiasts. Then there's the Nuclear Vault: Vintage Military, War and News Videos, with 1200+ full-length documentaries, news reels and other assorted footage, including 200 episodes of "The Big Picture (Army Signal Corps)" and a variety of Atomic and Nuclear energy films. Last but not least is US Auto Industry, an archive of over 450 vintage automobile films, including commercials from Buick, Pontiac, Chevy and Ford. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Mar 8, 2012 - 2 comments

Short Films Against Global and Social Injustice

In 2009, Ctrl.Alt.Shift, the "youth initiative of Christian Aid," held a national competition in the UK for aspiring filmmakers aged 18 to 25. Their mission: create a short film treatment based around three key issues: "War + Peace," "Gender + Power" and "HIV + Stigma." The results were then screened to an audience at the 2009 Raindance Film Festival. The films: 1000 Voices, HIV: The Musical, Man Made, No Way Through and War School. (All YouTube links. Vimeo links and descriptions of each film are inside this post.) These films deal with adult subject matter and may be disturbing for some viewers. Some may also be nsfw. [more inside]
posted by zarq on May 24, 2011 - 3 comments

"A Minute With Venus... A Year With Mercury!"

"During World War I, the [US] Army lost 7 million person-days and discharged more than 10,000 men because they were ailing from STDs. Once Penicillin kicked in in the mid-1940s, such infections were treatable. But as a matter of national security, the military started distributing condoms and aggressively marketing prophylactics to the troops in the early 20th century." [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jun 1, 2010 - 45 comments

Public Apathy Enables Leaders To Ignore Voters. . .

Leaked CIA Report: "Public Apathy Enables Leaders To Ignore Voters" (pdf / Scribed link here) outlines possible public relations / propaganda strategies to shore up public support in Germany and France for a continued war in Afghanistan.
posted by zarq on Mar 29, 2010 - 18 comments

Friendly fire coverup

New friendly fire coverup: Army shreds files on dead soldiers. "Hours after Salon revealed evidence that two Americans were killed by a U.S. tank, not enemy fire, military officials destroyed papers on the men."
posted by homunculus on Nov 19, 2008 - 46 comments

"[P]ropaganda is to a democracy what the bludgeon is to a totalitarian state...."

Need money? Have a blog? Well, your troubles may be over: "Hiring a block of bloggers to verbally attack a specific person or promote a specific message may be worth considering." Of course, if you don't want to play along, there are other ways to make your blog useful:
Hacking the site and subtly changing the messages and data—merely a few words or phrases—may be sufficient to begin destroying the blogger’s credibility with the audience.... If the messages are subtly tweaked and the data corrupted in the right way, the enemy may reason that the blogger in question has betrayed them and... take down the site (and the blogger) themselves....
Who might you be interested in "clandestinely recruiting or hiring prominent bloggers"? Oh, the US military.
posted by orthogonality on Apr 5, 2008 - 20 comments

The Saddam Sessions

Saddam's Confessions - Given Saddam Hussein's central place in the American Consciousness over the last couple decades and particularly in recent years, I found 60 minutes' interview with FBI interrogator George Piro pretty fascinating.
posted by kliuless on Jan 27, 2008 - 24 comments

Gannon's in Baghdad now?

U.S. Military Covertly Pays to Run Stories in Iraqi Press --As part of an information offensive in Iraq, the U.S. military is secretly paying Iraqi newspapers to publish stories ... The articles, written by U.S. military "information operations" troops, are translated into Arabic and placed in Baghdad newspapers with the help of a defense contractor ... Many of the articles are presented in the Iraqi press as unbiased news accounts written and reported by independent journalists. ... The Lincoln Group is involved, and the military's "Information Operations Task Force". Meanwhile, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld on Tuesday cited the proliferation of news organizations in Iraq as one of the country's great successes since the ouster of President Saddam Hussein.
posted by amberglow on Nov 30, 2005 - 46 comments

It's like a preview of what our media will look like once we finally rid ourselves of the extremist element within our borders.

CENTCOM trolls for a blogger to help with the propaganda--but he picks Jesus' General --I am a Public Affairs Officer writing from US Central Command. I would like to inquire about the possibility of you posting a link to our web site. I see that you are covering a lot of different types of stories in a lot of countries. I would like to get some of the stories out that are happening in Iraq, Afghanistan, and the Horn of Africa. ... Gen. JC Christian, patriot, of course responds with an even better idea, and cc:s Pat Robertson.
posted by amberglow on Aug 25, 2005 - 20 comments

making shit up

Identical quotations and the truth, as disseminated by the US Military ...Following a car bombing in Baghdad on Sunday, the U.S. military issued a statement with a quotation attributed to an unidentified Iraqi that was virtually identical to a quote reacting to an attack on July 13. ... (quotes inside)
posted by amberglow on Jul 24, 2005 - 85 comments

Sex and violence

Sex and PsyOps. An interesting look at sexual propaganda throughout modern military history. Unfortunately slightly censored, but a good look into what may or may not have been an effective demoralization tool.
posted by eas98 on May 19, 2004 - 25 comments

Gallery of anti-war propaganda posters remixed from old wartime posters.

Gallery of anti-war propaganda posters remixed from old wartime posters. Some are perhaps over the top, but its very thought provoking work. Some of these posters really drive the point home that we are not that far removed from from the grisly battles of that past regardless of the government spin and all the high-tech military toys. This one is especially moving.
posted by skallas on Aug 14, 2002 - 104 comments

Art Fights Back

Art Fights Back — an exhibit of poster art at Veterans Memorial Auditorium in Des Moines, Iowa — displays images dedicated to the memory of September 11 and support of the Unites States and its troops. Seems like a typical thing to do around war time, right?

Take a close look at the actual poster design. Don't they seem rather non-American in their artistic style? In fact, they recall an era of poster design for a dramatically different context than what was typically thought of as U.S. patriotism.
posted by Down10 on Mar 11, 2002 - 39 comments

Captures from a video of an attack on a Taliban BMP.

Captures from a video of an attack on a Taliban BMP. All I have to say is "holy crap." Graphic. Interesting. Discuss amongst yourselves.
posted by manero on Jan 25, 2002 - 24 comments

This propaganda leaflet

This propaganda leaflet is apparently being dropped in afghanistan by the American Military (taken from this msnbc story about the first american soldier to die from hostile fire). Regardless of your opinion about propaganda, this seems rather sloppy. If the purpose of propaganda is to convince people of something, wouldn't you want to say it in a language they understand? Is the American military getting lazy / sloppy / over-confident? It looks like the propaganda leaflets from Desert storm (1991), Desert Fox (1998), and the bombing of Kosovo were at least in the local languages. (Who knew there was a quarterly magazine dedicated to aerial leaflet propaganda?)
posted by jnthnjng on Jan 4, 2002 - 25 comments

"No Sir, I Am Not A Monkey"

"No Sir, I Am Not A Monkey" (But I play one on TV.)
posted by holgate on Dec 15, 2000 - 5 comments

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