Monday, November 05, 2007
Afghanistan and our Chickenhawk Media
I see that ace crime specialist Christie Blatchford has a book out about the war in Afghanistan.
Now I must admit I'm a HUGE fan of her tabloid prose about criminals and their victims...especially since I found out she grew up in Rouyn-Noranda. The poor thing.
But unless somebody GIVES me a copy of her new book...and I'm stuck in a snow drift or an airport or a village like Ottawa ....for more than 72 hours. And I am so bored I have to remember to keep breathing, I won't be reading it anytime soon..
Not just because Don Cherry LOVES it..
"This book will open your eyes to this brutal war and it is worthy of our brave young men and women. It is a tough book written by a tough broad who tells it like it is. I could not put the book down.”
Or because Rosie Dimanno wrote this cunnilingual review.
Christie adores her men in uniform, that's always been apparent. But what's not to love about these guys? ...They're thoughtful, kind and funny.They also cherish one another, in a way likely incomprehensible to civilians.
Canadians should be proud – I believe they are – of all these fine soldiers, who want to be recognized not for what's been lost in Afghanistan, the fallen, but for what's been disinterred: a fighting army with traditions and values and valour.
But because like that jingo shite.....and most of the stuff written about that doomed mission by our mediocre chickenhawk media..... I'm sure it's nothing more than cheap PROPAGANDA.
Which really pisses me off. How come I have to read the British media when I want to find out what is really happening in Afghanistan? And what the war there is really like.
From the morale of the troops...
As one soldier said when I arrived at Camp Bastion, the huge and still growing British military base in the Afghan desert: "This isn't our fight; it was just Blair sucking up to Bush."
I asked a number of soldiers whether Afghanistan was a fight worth dying for and they all - with the exception of one major - answered "no".
To the state of the Afghan army.
As British troops took the opportunity to take off their heavy body armour and gulp down a bottle of much-needed water, the Afghans passed round a cannabis joint.
When the Taliban firing resumed, one Afghan soldier had been rendered so oblivious to the danger that he walked straight into the line of fire and was lucky, almost beyond belief, only to have the magazine shot straight out of his rifle.
To the plight of Afghan civilians.
Pilots in attack helicopters and fighter jets do try to check whether there are civilians at the selected target but, with terrified families sensibly taking cover and staying out of sight, it's often impossible to tell.
So terrible accidents do happen. Only a few days before I arrived, 27 members of one family had been killed by an American bomb.
Kaboom. A bomb just like this one...
Somebody should remind that idiot that the Taliban are homophobes too...
You know..... I also happen to be very fond of some of our boys in uniform. Really. And one of the first things I do every morning is check the news to make sure none of the ones in Afghanistan have been hurt...or worse.
And I'm not against the NATO mission itself...just the way it is being handled...and politicized by those two yankee doodles Harper and Hillier.
But if Canadians are going to be able to make an informed decision about the war and how much longer our troops should stay there.
They need REAL reporting.
Not cheap propaganda...