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How do you put a good face on war crimes? You think ahead and hire a PR agency.
posted by feckless on Mar 5, 2002 - 6 comments

 

Nine US soldiers killed, forty wounded in this mountain debacle battle.

Nine US soldiers killed, forty wounded in this mountain debacle battle.
Surprise, surprise. Our enemies can still shoot up convoys and shoot down helicopters. (Many of them did the same thing to the Soviets.) Why are we sending our troops to the front in rented pickup trucks and 4-wheel drive vehicles? What ever happened to the Bradley? Don't they know that helicopters make great targets... especially when your enemy has Stingers? Why rush back into ground combat against a larger-than-expected enemy force anyways?
o/` "All we are saying... is give bombs a chance!"
posted by insomnia_lj on Mar 4, 2002 - 58 comments

Not to complain about the ever-expanding war on terror, but...

Not to complain about the ever-expanding war on terror, but... Afganistan just might become a little stickier than our leaders had hoped. A recent raid on regrouping troops went not too well, with a combined force of Afgan and U.S. troops beating a quick retreat. Is the U.S. miring itself in not one but several Vietnam's?
posted by Gilbert on Mar 3, 2002 - 12 comments

They just wont let it lie.

They just wont let it lie. What posses these people to keep fighting against overwhelming odds.I can see what they are against but for the life of me I cannot see what they are for.Couple of points near the bottom of the piece are interesting.IHave I been asleep or has the killing of innocents on 23 January been underreported.Does the fact that small raids have led to arrest interrogation and subsequent release answer my own question? I am perplexed,are there any good guys?
posted by Fat Buddha on Mar 2, 2002 - 10 comments

After 6 years hiding in the hills, Illija Panincic discovers that the war in Bosnia is over. On BBC today he told how he fought his next door neighbour, a bear, for the rights to the pear tree. I wonder how long they will be hiding in the hills in Afghanistan.
posted by Geo on Mar 1, 2002 - 6 comments

I support the war in Afghanistan because I believe the Al Qua'eda network is an enemy that must be eliminated. I stand almost alone in my community and in my family in this belief.

I support the war in Afghanistan because I believe the Al Qua'eda network is an enemy that must be eliminated. I stand almost alone in my community and in my family in this belief. A former punk describes how she re-examined her beliefs after Sept. 11 and found out that what the extreme left were saying was as tired and reactionary as those from the extreme right. This piece posted on Blogs of War was turned down for submission in Punk Planet as not being timely enough...or was it because it was too moderate. After yesterday's post on Punk=Capitalism is this a meta trend?
posted by AsiaInsider on Feb 27, 2002 - 34 comments

Ashcroft's Jihad.

Ashcroft's Jihad. "Attorney General John D. Ashcroft yesterday cast the government's war on terrorism in religious terms, arguing that the campaign is rooted in faith in God and urging Christians, Jews and Muslims to unite in the effort." So as an agnostic, am I excused from the war?
posted by homunculus on Feb 20, 2002 - 66 comments

Pentagon Readies Efforts to Sway Sentiment Abroad

Pentagon Readies Efforts to Sway Sentiment Abroad The latest in our propaganda war. Why not simply hire such notables as Britney Spears and other worthies to entertain, free, in countries that do not seem to appreciate what democracy and capitalism are able to showcase as why our system is so good?
posted by Postroad on Feb 19, 2002 - 14 comments

A Picture is worth a thousand words

A Picture is worth a thousand words
Jonathan Jones says America turns to Rockwell's idyllic images in times of trouble.
Remember This Guy from Tiananmen Square, June 5, 1989? A powerful image that seems to be linked to bravery and freedom in most stories I remember.
Now what about This Guy, A Palestinian boy throwing stones at an Israeli tank.
I'm not sure where the connection is here, but the tank images struck me as somewhat similiar to each other, yet, I imagine the two images will mean different things to different people.
I'm not sure what either tank image has to do with Rockwell, that's just the story that got me thinking.
posted by Blake on Feb 19, 2002 - 4 comments

US planes rain dollars on Afghanistan

US planes rain dollars on Afghanistan Brings a whole new dimension to the term "throwing away taxpayers' money". What kind of logic does the US govt put behind a stunt like this?
posted by ssheth on Feb 16, 2002 - 29 comments

War, what is it good for

War, what is it good for absolutely nothing?. Poverty, political, social and economic inequalities result in war. So whats new.
posted by johnnyboy on Feb 14, 2002 - 8 comments

"Peaceful Tomorrows" launches tomorrow (Feb 14th).

"Peaceful Tomorrows" launches tomorrow (Feb 14th). "Peaceful Tomorrows continues the work of family members who took part in the Walk for Healing and Peace from the Pentagon to the World Trade Center (winter 2001) as well as those who met with Afghan families affected by the subsequent bombing campaign (January 2002). Our goal is to facilitate dialogues on alternatives to war that utilize all of America's collective wisdom, skills and talents. "

Good luck Peaceful Tomorrows!
posted by crasspastor on Feb 13, 2002 - 1 comment

Ye olde Axis of Evil

Ye olde Axis of Evil turns out to be, really, just an exercise in getting rid of Saddam (registration required). Not that I blame W but shouldn't we get a few other countries to back us up in a potentially long, protracted war? Could North Korea be right?
posted by boardman on Feb 13, 2002 - 9 comments

Iraq Calls Bush's Bluff on Weapons Scrutiny.

Iraq Calls Bush's Bluff on Weapons Scrutiny. Former U.N. Weapons inspector Scott Ritter claims that Iraq's new attitude toward inspections might undermine attempts to end Saddam Hussein's regime.
posted by Ty Webb on Feb 11, 2002 - 8 comments

Enduring Freedom: The action figures

Enduring Freedom: The action figures Hong Kong hobbyists collect action figures with an intensity that in Japan would be labled Otaku-like. These action figures are more than toys, they are miniature replicas of real and modern weapons. Now you can buy your Covert CIA Agent Jones action figure and direct Long Range Airstrikes at home.
posted by AsiaInsider on Feb 8, 2002 - 5 comments

Israel's Peace Army Mobilizes

Israel's Peace Army Mobilizes
"We will not continue to fight beyond the green line [Israel's pre-1967 border with the West Bank and Gaza] in order to rule, expel, destroy, blockade, assassinate, starve and humiliate an entire people."

This from an increasingly vocal group of Israeli soldiers and officers who refuse to serve in the Occupied Territories. An encouraging sign of hope that there are a growing number of people in Israel who strongly disagree with the current policy of subjugation.
posted by mapalm on Feb 7, 2002 - 9 comments

How the U.S. Killed the Wrong Soldiers

How the U.S. Killed the Wrong Soldiers I read the original report of this attack and discounted the possiblity that it was a major screw up but it looks like it was. The same story from Knight Ridder
posted by onegoodmove on Feb 4, 2002 - 27 comments

Department of Peace vs. Bob Barr's war with the world...

Department of Peace vs. Bob Barr's war with the world... I found this really funny, but even I question what a DOP could hope to achieve, any ideas in a realistic sense.
posted by bittennails on Feb 1, 2002 - 11 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

Taleban faction ditches Kandahar, reneges on surrender agreement.

Taleban faction ditches Kandahar, reneges on surrender agreement. My only question is, why were these people not disarmed, or was this some sort of "Munich Pact" surrender agreement?
posted by insomnyuk on Jan 24, 2002 - 8 comments

Dress code for female troops in Saudi Arabia changed.

Dress code for female troops in Saudi Arabia changed. An update to this thread. They don't have to wear abayas any more, but they still can't drive cars.
posted by JanetLand on Jan 23, 2002 - 28 comments

Somalis cheer at bootleg "Blackhawk down" screening

Somalis cheer at bootleg "Blackhawk down" screening Somali citizens paid the equivalent of US $.10 to see a bootleg copy of the movie in a playground in downtown Mogadishu on Monday. The audience cheered at scenes where American troops were killed and American choppers were shot down. Somalia may be the next target in the 'War on Terrorism'. "As you can see, Somalis are brave fighters," one man said. "If the Americans come back to fight us, we shall defeat them again."
posted by SpecialK on Jan 22, 2002 - 51 comments

"You just don't want to hear anyone scream anymore.."

"You just don't want to hear anyone scream anymore.." Blackhawk Down on the History Channel, includes interviews with American soldiers and Somalian militiamen.
posted by dglynn on Jan 21, 2002 - 8 comments

Let Slip the Blogs of War

Let Slip the Blogs of War For a while I didn't think I was gonna make it, but around 1800 hours I laid down a barrage of trenchant observations and we finally broke through...star studded article by tim cavanaugh.
posted by th3ph17 on Jan 17, 2002 - 22 comments

fate of detainees hangs on U.S. wording

fate of detainees hangs on U.S. wording Articoe discusses why the U.S. refuses to call prisoners sent to Cuba POWs instead of detainees...what a difference a word makes.
posted by Postroad on Jan 17, 2002 - 6 comments

black hawk down

black hawk down easy to glamourise a war isn't it, however the story behind the media hype/historical distortions is also in need of highlighting
posted by johnnyboy on Jan 17, 2002 - 10 comments

"Leave no man behind"

"Leave no man behind" is the tagline for the new Scott/Bruckheimer battlepic, Blackhawk Down.

In October of 1993, US Rangers and Delta Force personnel stationed outside of Mogadishu, Somalia, launched what should've been a 30 minute grab-and-go mission to capture higher-ups under the command of Mohammed Aidid, a Somali warlord. Before it was all over, many hours later, 19 US servicemen and 1000+ Somalis were dead.

PBS has a decent writeup on the Bakara Market ambush, but I still feel like I am missing something. Some sources share the movie's claim that the US was there to support humanitarian relief efforts, that Aidid was preventing the distribution of food. Others say we were there to protect American oil interests.

So what really happened on that day in October 1993? The movie opens on Friday, I saw it last night, and I am still exhausted. Admittedly, this film is far better than Pearl Harbor (no contrived love-triangles are used as a framing device here), but for all the simulated shooting and on-screen heroism, it still seems hard to make out the truth through all of the Hollywood dust. So I guess I am wondering, can we prevent Hollywood's versions of history from replacing the truth (or even the truth-as-we-knew-it)? Should we even try? Is it even possible?
posted by grabbingsand on Jan 16, 2002 - 39 comments

"The Americans are angry because they had one day of war. We have had 23 years of it"

"The Americans are angry because they had one day of war. We have had 23 years of it" human rights group Global Exchange takes WTC victim's families to meet the victims of the "War on Terror"
posted by brettski on Jan 16, 2002 - 9 comments

"We must not declare victory too soon,"

"We must not declare victory too soon," or the inevitable fingerpointing will begin.
posted by magullo on Jan 16, 2002 - 6 comments

More ammo for the "U.S. brought it on themselves" crowd, courtesy of the New York Times.

"One report obtained by Dr. Zilinskas from the government is "Development of `N' for Offensive Use in Biological Warfare." `N' was the code letter for Bacillus anthracis, the germ that causes anthrax. Another is "The Stability of Botulinum Toxin in Common Beverages." The germ-derived substance is the most poisonous known to science."

Seems that the United States has been selling instructions for the creation of bio-weapons.
posted by Yelling At Nothing on Jan 12, 2002 - 4 comments

Al Quaeda prisoners arrive at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Al Quaeda prisoners arrive at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. With all the war talk, why are these men not being classified as POWs? Simply because they didn't wear uniforms?
posted by Ty Webb on Jan 12, 2002 - 15 comments

Finally, finally, finally!! Someone in the mainstream media is finally asking some questions. Lots of people (here and abroad) have known about this book for some time. I think it deserves some checking into.
posted by bas67 on Jan 8, 2002 - 77 comments

When do the war powers expire? (LA Times)

When do the war powers expire? (LA Times) With a state of War being used to justify increased security measures, spending bills, unlimited detention and international military action is anybody else uncomfortable with the vagueness of the 'current situation'? How and when can we say we have won and declare it peacetime again?
posted by srboisvert on Dec 23, 2001 - 10 comments

Should this country

Should this country be our next target in the war on terrorism? hmmmmm...
posted by bunnyfire on Dec 22, 2001 - 42 comments

Got a "Dot-mil Buddy"?

Got a "Dot-mil Buddy"? George plus two other webloggers have new readers from the .mil domain. What about you?
posted by xowie on Dec 19, 2001 - 15 comments

American (re)construction of Afghanistan government should require secularism,

American (re)construction of Afghanistan government should require secularism, according to this op-ed piece by Robert Scheer in the LA Times. I've been advocating this from the beginning, but this is the first media piece I've seen that argues the point.
posted by yesster on Dec 19, 2001 - 10 comments

"DO NOT USE wire stories which lead with civilian casualties from the U.S. war on Afghanistan.

"DO NOT USE wire stories which lead with civilian casualties from the U.S. war on Afghanistan. They should be mentioned further down in the story. If the story needs rewriting to play down the civilian casualties, DO IT. The only exception is if the U.S. hits an orphanage, school or similar facility and kills scores or hundreds of children...Failure to follow any of these or other standing rules could put your job in jeopardy."

from a memo re war coverage by Ray Glenn the chief copy editor of the Panama City News Herald in Florida.

Good to see that the media is doing its bit for the war effort.
posted by lagado on Dec 18, 2001 - 34 comments

Bin Laden 'heard' in Tora Bora

Bin Laden 'heard' in Tora Bora Ah, yes, but were his lips moving in sync?
posted by victors on Dec 15, 2001 - 6 comments

"The Christmas truce was the last twitch of the 19th Century. By that, I mean it was the last public moment in which it was assumed that people were nice, and that the Dickens view of the world was a credible view." -- Paul Fussell

The Christmas Truce of 1914 is an interesting footnote in history where German and British soldiers stopped fighting and fraternized in the middle of the battlefield. Some witnesses have claimed that enemy soldiers played a friendly game of soccer.

The events have since been chronicled in print, song, and on film.
posted by MattS on Dec 14, 2001 - 4 comments

Sprawl is Good Defense

Sprawl is Good Defense "It's a pretty good rule of military thumb that the greater the concentration of value, the more attractive the target... To keep things safe, you need to spread things out." The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Smithsonian should begin moving their collections out of NYC and Washington,D.C. Now. Talented, intelligent people and people with irreplaceable skills should go next. Re-locate to the Great Plains.
posted by Faze on Dec 14, 2001 - 11 comments

Promises

Promises "What is it really like to live in Jerusalem? PROMISES offers touching and fresh insight into the Middle East conflict when filmmakers Shaprio, Goldberg and Bolado travel to this complex and charged city to see what seven children — Palestinian and Israeli — think about war, peace and just growing up." airs tonite (check your local listings) i've seen a few POV documentaries before and they were pretty good.
posted by kliuless on Dec 13, 2001 - 3 comments

Where-o-where can bin Laden be?

Where-o-where can bin Laden be? The general belief among U.S. officials appears to be that al Qaeda's leader, Osama bin Laden, probably is still somewhere in Afghanistan... But, conceded a defense official, the United States has very little solid information on the whereabouts of bin Laden. "If we had a real clue, we would have already got him," he said.
posted by Rastafari on Dec 11, 2001 - 9 comments

If we begin cutting back on fundamental freedoms,


Veteran foreign correspondent Robert Fisk attacked in Afghanistan.

Veteran foreign correspondent Robert Fisk attacked in Afghanistan. Fisk's been my dispassionate-knowledgeable-counterpoint-supplier-of-choice for the events of the last few months, and unfortunately he's been very badly beaten by a mob near Quetta . His reaction: "They had every reason to be angry... If I had been them, I would have attacked me".
posted by blackbeltjones on Dec 9, 2001 - 72 comments

A Letter From The Frontlines In Afghanistan

A Letter From The Frontlines In Afghanistan - This letter was read on the Sully and Scooter Show on KOGO News Radio in San Diego. Supposedly written by a U.S. Marine. Don't know if it is real or not.
posted by radio_mookie on Dec 6, 2001 - 32 comments


Want to escape CNN's round-the-clock war coverage? Don't head for the theater. Faster than Lee Marvin could say "Dirty Dozen," Hollywood is rounding up its good-looking troops, rallying the editing rooms, and launching a war-time celluloid offensive. Groovy. And just when I'd started getting bored with the real deal...
posted by Bixby23 on Dec 4, 2001 - 6 comments

US Bombs Hit Wrong Target for Second Time in Two Days

US Bombs Hit Wrong Target for Second Time in Two Days
Just a reminder, lest anyone forget, that scores of Afghani civilians are still being killed by US bombs. [More inside.]
posted by mapalm on Dec 2, 2001 - 89 comments

"It's not propaganda, it's the truth"

"It's not propaganda, it's the truth" Rumsfeld declared. OK, but leaflets with radio broadcasts, and Information Programs, is this the best we can do? How about some Daffy Goes to War, even some inspirational Soviet and Cuban communist posters, as we do battle on the psyops war front?
posted by Voyageman on Nov 29, 2001 - 5 comments

According to this editorial,

According to this editorial, the Russians have outmaneuvered the US oil interests by encouraging the Northern Alliance to take Kabul. "The alliance is now Afghanistan's dominant force and, heedless of multi-party political talks in Germany going on this week, styles itself as the new "lawful" government, a claim fully backed by Moscow."
posted by electro on Nov 28, 2001 - 14 comments

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