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7/7 a year on

 
 
msolga
 
  1  
Reply Fri 7 Jul, 2006 07:17 am
bm
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blatham
 
  1  
Reply Fri 7 Jul, 2006 07:30 am
The following article really ought to be read in its entirety (it's damned important, in my view). But I'll excerpt a relevant part in light of your frustration at not knowing who to trust any longer...

Quote:
Meanwhile, the concept of military information operations, or IO, was undergoing a remarkable transformation. On October 30, 2003, Donald Rumsfeld signed a secret Pentagon directive, in the works for at least a year, known as the Information Operations Roadmap. The work of Christopher Lamb, then the Pentagon's deputy assistant secretary of defense for resources and plans, it established IO as a "core military competency, on par with air, ground, maritime, and special operations." Until then IO, which includes such subspecialties as military deception, psychological operations (psyops), and electronic warfare, had been considered an activity that merely supported combat operations, but it has taken on a prominent role in the war on terror.

"It really reflected the personal sense of the secretary of defense that information operations are going to be a larger component of war-fighting in the future than they had ever been in the past," Lamb told me.

The roadmap recognizes that the globalization of the information environment has eroded boundaries that have protected the public and the press from consuming propaganda aimed at foreign populations, making it likely that "psyop messages . . . will often be replayed by the news media for much larger audiences, including the American public."
http://www.cjr.org/issues/2006/3/schulman.asp?printerfriendly=yes
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blatham
 
  1  
Reply Fri 7 Jul, 2006 07:42 am
Here's an item to watch. The significance to our discussion here relates to Berlusconi's alliances (Bush crowd and Rupert Murdoch, particularly) and to the widening attacks on independent media and dissident voices in the US, Britain, Australia and Italy. Patterns such as this ought not to be ignored.
Quote:
Italian Probe Broadens Beyond Abduction
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dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Fri 7 Jul, 2006 07:48 am
Thinking of you guys.
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msolga
 
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Reply Fri 7 Jul, 2006 07:49 am
Yes, me too.
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sumac
 
  1  
Reply Fri 7 Jul, 2006 07:59 am
blatham said:

Quote:
One clear advantage (or assumed advantage) is conceptual simplicity...war is easy to conceptualize because it conveys a black/white, good guy/bad guy binary framework. And, of course, such a framework also facilitates manipulation of the populaces' fears and hatreds and that makes those citizens much more manipulatable in all sorts of respects. It is far harder to get that done where you allow for complexities, ontological and moral.



Quite true. Whether or not impression management is deliberately involved - to arouse fears and be understandable by the lowest common denominator - the effect is the same.

Just read that the FBI thwarted a plot to mess with NYC's tunnels. It was just in the planning stage - chatter, I gather.
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Steve 41oo
 
  1  
Reply Fri 7 Jul, 2006 08:53 am
Thanks for the Shulman piece Blatham.

I liked the CNN bureau chief who said "I've had to go back to basic journalism" after dealing with a public affairs officer who sold her a psyops excercise.

Also an Information Warrier (unnamed) for the Air Force

Quote:
The reason that I tell you the truth, is that when I lie to you, you will believe me


thats a gem.
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nimh
 
  1  
Reply Fri 7 Jul, 2006 07:50 pm
Its the 8th already ... a belated moment for those who died
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Diane
 
  1  
Reply Fri 7 Jul, 2006 08:41 pm
The quote from the Air Force Information Warrior says so much. If the, mostly, sophisticated news media believes what it is told, it follows that the belief rapidly increases throughout the public readership and takes on the aurthority of fact. If the story is later reported as inaccurate, the new information seldom achieves the credibility or the readership of the initial story. Public credulity is sadly, cynically, manipulated in politics or in war.

I too have been thinking of you Brits. If someone as politically knowledgable and involved becomes as weary as you Steve, it means that most of us have reached a level of confusion and weariness more overwhelming than we've ever known before 9/11 and 7/7. I've begun to think that the pro war and anti war sides have become so jaded and fixed in their attitudes that each automatically denies what the other side says. We in the US have become so polarized that there is almost no subject that is debatable-- it seems that we have become members of absolute, fundamentalist religions ; two sides with permanently etched, immovable positions. Confusing doesn't even begin to describe the last few years.
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Steve 41oo
 
  1  
Reply Sat 8 Jul, 2006 08:31 am
Thanks for that Diane. I'm glad I'm not the only one who cant make sense of it all...or rather I can but I find the conclusions so shocking that I'd rather keep it to myself.

If you have 1/2 hour spare to read it, I thoroughly recommend the article linked by Blatham.
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Diane
 
  1  
Reply Sat 8 Jul, 2006 10:49 am
Steve wrote:
Quote:

I'm glad I'm not the only one who cant make sense of it all...or rather I can but I find the conclusions so shocking that I'd rather keep it to myself.


Especially true after following your suggestion and reading the entire article by Shulman that Bernie linked.
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Diane
 
  1  
Reply Sat 8 Jul, 2006 10:56 am
That old saying, "Perception is reality" takes on a cynicism that isn't necessarily present when it is read from a philosophical point of view.
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Steve 41oo
 
  1  
Reply Sat 8 Jul, 2006 11:15 am
I started this thread because I was depressed that polarisation in our society is getting worse[/i]. Attitudes on both sides of the War on Terror are hardening. After 7/7, 13% of British Muslims consider the bombers to be martyrs. 7% say killing other British civilians can be justified. 2% actually say they would be proud of a family member who fought jihad for al Qaida.

These figures (ITN poll) are staggering.

Then I looked through the posts made on 7/7/5 and was struck that right from the start there was doubt whether we were being told the truth.

Later it transpires that a computer expert who actually worked for the Muslim community that would produce the bombers was so concerned about what he was hearing that he sent a whole bundle of stuff together with names to the police in 2003.

Yet everyone was taken off guard on the day. Except Benjamin Netanyahu who never left his hotel to address a meeting to promote investment in Israel because he had been tipped off, apparantly by a message from the metropolitan police to the Israeli embassy.

This appeared briefly on the news wires then disappeared, to be replaced by categoric denials that any warning had been received.

Qui bono?
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blatham
 
  1  
Reply Sat 8 Jul, 2006 03:20 pm
sumac wrote:
blatham said:

Quote:
One clear advantage (or assumed advantage) is conceptual simplicity...war is easy to conceptualize because it conveys a black/white, good guy/bad guy binary framework. And, of course, such a framework also facilitates manipulation of the populaces' fears and hatreds and that makes those citizens much more manipulatable in all sorts of respects. It is far harder to get that done where you allow for complexities, ontological and moral.



Quite true. Whether or not impression management is deliberately involved - to arouse fears and be understandable by the lowest common denominator - the effect is the same.

Just read that the FBI thwarted a plot to mess with NYC's tunnels. It was just in the planning stage - chatter, I gather.


hi su

Given Rove's recent statement regarding how he planned to approach the coming election (and given past experience) I think everyone on the planet would be quite surprised if this period didn't see a significant increase in attempts to get Americans scared.
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blatham
 
  1  
Reply Sat 8 Jul, 2006 03:26 pm
Steve (as 41oo) wrote:
Thanks for the Shulman piece Blatham.

I liked the CNN bureau chief who said "I've had to go back to basic journalism" after dealing with a public affairs officer who sold her a psyops excercise.

Also an Information Warrier (unnamed) for the Air Force

Quote:
The reason that I tell you the truth, is that when I lie to you, you will believe me


thats a gem.


steve
Quite welcome. And yeah, that last quote is something.
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Merry Andrew
 
  1  
Reply Sat 8 Jul, 2006 03:34 pm
blatham wrote:


Given Rove's recent statement regarding how he planned to approach the coming election (and given past experience) I think everyone on the planet would be quite surprised if this period didn't see a significant increase in attempts to get Americans scared.


Right on. I fully expect any number of "new" plots to be uncovered by the authorities between now and election day to much publicity and self-congratulatory back-slapping at how well this administration is handling the "crisis."
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blatham
 
  1  
Reply Sat 8 Jul, 2006 04:03 pm
diane and steve

I think we are at a pivotal point in history...the dismantling of the USSR, the ascention to power in the US of extremist nationalism and religious fundamentalism with a coincident rejection of international agreements and norms, the rise of violent Muslim fundamentalism in the Middle East and now extending worldwide, the growth in power and political influence of large international corporate entities, the increasingly monopolisic control of media and information systems, increasingly severe strains on civil order stemming from larger populations inhabiting an increasingly volatile political and physical environment (resource depletion), and all of the capabilities for bad as well as good which stem from modern electronic/computing technologies.

It is times like this when things can go seriously astray.
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blatham
 
  1  
Reply Sat 8 Jul, 2006 04:08 pm
Merry Andrew wrote:
blatham wrote:


Given Rove's recent statement regarding how he planned to approach the coming election (and given past experience) I think everyone on the planet would be quite surprised if this period didn't see a significant increase in attempts to get Americans scared.


Right on. I fully expect any number of "new" plots to be uncovered by the authorities between now and election day to much publicity and self-congratulatory back-slapping at how well this administration is handling the "crisis."


hi merry

Yes, and they will look like today's Holland Tunnel story and like the previous one from a few weeks back - big announcements suggesting "serious and nearly imminent threat" but two days or weeks in, when the story gets clarified, we'll find those initial claims unwarranted. But that clarification will get maybe one tenth or one hundredth the media attention of the initial story.

These guys manipulate the media and the citizenry craftily and effectively.
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Merry Andrew
 
  1  
Reply Sat 8 Jul, 2006 08:26 pm
The New York tunnels story is already starting to look suspiciously like over-blown hype. We now learn that the plot was discovered quite a while ago, not day before yesterday; that everything was still in the "planning stages"; and that the would-be perpetrators have, to the best of our knowledge, never set foot on the North American continent. So why is this a front page story? Because it's been planted that way.
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Kara
 
  1  
Reply Sun 9 Jul, 2006 07:45 am
This is part of an editorial by Frank Rich in today's NYTimes, discussing the WSJ's schizoid reaction to the SWIFT scrutiny. I'm not a big fan of Rich, but here he is spot-on.

Quote:
The administration has a more insidious game plan instead: it has manufactured and milked this controversy to reboot its intimidation of the press, hoping journalists will pull punches in an election year. There are momentous stories far more worrisome to the White House than the less-than-shocking Swift program, whether in the chaos of Anbar Province or the ruins of New Orleans. If the press muzzles itself, its under-the-radar self-censorship will be far more valuable than a Nixonesque frontal assault that ends up as a 24/7 hurricane veering toward the Supreme Court.

Will this plan work? It did after 9/11. The chilling words articulated at the get-go by Ari Fleischer (Americans must "watch what they say") carried over to the run-up to the Iraq war, when the administration's W.M.D. claims went unchallenged by most news organizations. That this strategy may work again can be seen in the fascinating escalation in tactics by the Bush White House's most powerful not-so-secret agent in the press itself, the Wall Street Journal editorial page. The Journal is not Fox News or an idle blogger or radio bloviator. It's the establishment voice of the party in power. The infamous editorial it ran on June 30 ("Fit and Unfit to Print"), an instant classic, doesn't just confer its imprimatur on the administration's latest crusade to conflate aggressive journalism with treason, but also ups the ante.


Opinion piece
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