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Welcome to the Dawn Patrol, our daily roundup of information on the War on Terror and other topics - from the MilBlogs, other blogs, and the mainstream media. If you're a blogger, you can join the conversation. If you link to any of these stories, add a link to the Dawn Patrol too and your trackback will be added to the list. (We have a daily "Open Post" too, if you have something on another topic you can link there.)
WAR-ON-THE-MEDIA.2 -- [Salt Lake Tribune - journalist embedded in Iraq]
It warms my heart when a blog entry stirs up debate, as recent posts on the media-military relationship have.
A few observations on some of your comments, to stir the pot just a tad more . . .
...For the same reason, I caution against reporters, soldiers and especially politicians who claim to know more than the average G.I. Joe because they've been somewhere. Many reporters don't leave the presence of their military protectors. Many soldiers don't leave the forward operating base. And many politicians don't leave the confines of a Humvee.
Ralph Peters: Sucker or Liar? -- [Back to Iraq 3.0]
He’s currently a favorite of the pro-war set, who say we reporters have “agendas” to undermine the troops and get our civil war on, ‘cause, you know, that makes Bush look bad… or something.
(A quick note on the above link: it’s all conservative publications. Why is it I, a professional journalist, get tarred with a “liberal” brush when I have never, ever written for Mother Jones, the Nation or Granta, etc. But polemicists who spend the all their energies cranking out pieces for the National Review, Front Page and the New York Post somehow don’t get called “conservatives” but instead are “truth tellers”? Such a mystery.)
Among the claims in his slanderous column: “The Iraqi Army has confounded its Western critics, performing extremely well last week. And the people trust their new army to an encouraging degree.”
The Stringers -- [Columbia Journalism Review at Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism]
...Critics of the press’s coverage of the war in Iraq often grumble that American journalists are obsessed with reporting “bad news,” while ignoring the “good.” To many of the Iraqis working for the U.S. media, this seems irrelevant, even absurd. Ahmed, an owlish thirty-one-year-old who taught poetry at a local university before the war and who now works for an American newspaper chain, shrugged and said, “It’s true that journalists here are mostly writing about the bad. But when you have a hotel being built in Najaf and a kidnapping of a female journalist in Baghdad, what are you going to do? The bad news eclipses the good news.”
Samarra File -- [Iraq Hack: A Reporter's Blog]
More than a couple of times I've been miffed about criticism of Iraq reportage -- my point usually is that the journalism is good -- its just nobody notices back home, too interested with shiny, squeaky-wheel, barking-head, partisanship than any solid reportage. So I'm not going to let this one slip by you.
Tom Lasseter hasn't left Baghdad much since the invasion. Like many of us, he's had friends die, been threatened himself, and holds the military boots to the fire, fairly. No, he doesn't live in the Green Zone. He goes out, like most journalists, when he can, when its safe, and even then some.
"Strap those motherf-----s to the hood like a deer," said Staff Sgt. James Robinson, 25, of Hughes, Ark.
The soldiers heaved the two bodies onto the hood of a Humvee and tied them down with a cord. The dead insurgents' legs and arms flapped in the air as the Humvee rumbled along.
Iraqi families stood in front of the surrounding houses. They watched the corpses ride by and glared at the American soldiers.
More Junedi photos -- [An independent look at Iraq - journalist embedded in Iraq]
I took these yesterday and today in two completely different missions.
Yesterday's was a very impromptu find-a-sniper mission. The sniper wounded an American soldier from 2nd of the 9th Cavalry, my current embed. I rushed from the internet cafe to my room, grabbed my gear and rode into town in the back seat of a speeding Humvee.
The city was locked down. The city police were out in force; and, Humvees -- both American and Iraqi -- lined the streets and blocked traffic.
Unit has nose, knack for finding weapons caches -- [The Atlanta Journal-Constitution - embedded in Iraq]
...The Illinois soldiers stationed here have developed a talent for finding where the enemy is hiding weapons. Many of the soldiers are police officers and sheriff’s deputies back home, so they have experience gathering evidence.
In Iraq, the Untold Stories Pile Up, One by One by One -- [CJR Daily -- journalist embedded in Iraq]
...Like other reporters I met, he had seen quite a bit of action in his various trips to Iraq, and was furious that he had missed what he considered a great story the day before. Seems some Marines from Golf were out manning a checkpoint when they saw a car full of masked men coming at them. They signaled for the car to stop and fired some warning shots but it kept coming, so they shot out its tires and engine block, but still to no avail -- so they shot to kill, stopping the car in its tracks. Once the car stopped rolling, the Marines searched it and found an Iraqi man in the trunk who had been kidnapped by the masked men to be held for ransom. The Marines told Morris that the guy was ecstatic, and kept saying how he loved the Marines, who had just accidentally saved him from certain death. In a weird way it was a funny story, and it would have been even better if anyone had been around to record it and get all the little details.
All of which got us to talking about the dwindling number of reporters that are embedded in Iraq.
Earning my stripes -- [Dispatches from Iraq -- USA reporter embedded in Iraq]
My last night with 4th Battalion 23rd Infantry regiment in Mosul, Battalion commander Lt. Col. John Norris called me to the front of the conference room during his battle update briefing. I had this sinking feeling in my stomach, the kind I had as a kid when I was called down to the principal’s office. Oh no, I thought. What have I done now? Reporters are meant to be at the back of the room observing, never commanding center stage.
To my utter amazement, Norris handed me a piece of paper, a “certificate of appreciation” it said. He read it aloud to the room of battalion leaders and thanked me for being fair to his boys while telling their story. The parchment’s loopy script also documented that I had, in fact, seen “Mad contact, yo.” To make my brush with danger under his watch completely official, he pinned a two-inch Combat Action Badge on my shirt collar.
Zarqawi Was Here -- [Michael Totten - journalist in Iraq]
My Peshmerga weren’t really necessary. I told my translator Alan that I was embarrassed so many military resources were being spent on my account. I probably didn’t need any.
“It’s too much,” Alan said and laughed. He, too, was clearly embarrassed. “It’s too much. The minister is doing this to be nice. He wants you to know that he cares about you.”
I introduced myself to some of my Peshmerga guards. There were so many it wasn’t easy to speak to them all. I had a hard time looking them in the eye. Jesus, I thought. These guys must think I’m the biggest wimp in the world. Biara isn’t actually dangerous. Zarqawi hasn’t been there for years. But it wasn’t my idea to bring them along. When the minister said “I will send guards with you” I thought he meant maybe two guys. I cringed when I saw how many picked me up at my hotel in the morning.
Poll Too Biased To Show Troops' Views -- (Philadelphia Inquirer)...Tim Kane
...The unforgivable flaw in Zogby's survey is the biased phrasing of its questions and answers. Two of the most provocative results are based on questions with no middle ground. It's like a multiple-choice test with no right answers.
You Don’t Know Jack (NRO)
...Ralph Peters's recent reporting from Iraq, which I have expressed skepticism about in The Corner, illustrates both problems. Peters travels with the U.S. military, so he is seeing places the military takes him to. How much of Iraq can they take him to? He does not tell us. And then, Peters is an old military-intelligence war-horse himself, with a deep and strong attachment to the U.S. armed forces, and a powerful desire to identify with whatever mission the military has been given. Nothing wrong with that. To the contrary, that's the kind of spirit we should want in our military and ex-military people — God bless the man. Whether or not those powerful bonds help make for good and objective reporting, is another matter.
Enemies Don't Fight Fairly In Iraq -- (San Diego Union-Tribune)...Clifford May, Scripps Howard News Service
...The United States is now engaged in what is called an “asymmetrical war,” a conflict in which the two sides fight in different ways and using different weapons.
Iraqis fight talk of civil war -- (Asia Times)
BAGHDAD - Repeated cries in the mainstream media of an unfolding civil war fall on the deaf ears of many Iraqis who see the violence as a direct result of the US-led ...
U.S. Sets Plans For Iraq In Civil War -- (Washington Post)...Ann Scott Tyson
The U.S. military will rely primarily on Iraq's security forces to put down a civil war in that country if one breaks out, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld told lawmakers yesterday.
Dealing with a civil war up to Iraqis, Rumsfeld says -- (Detroit Free Press)...Drew Brown, Knight Ridder News
WASHINGTON -- U.S. military commanders don't intend to allow a civil war in Iraq to occur, but if it happens, they'll let Iraqi security forces handle it, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said Thursday.
Warner: Civil war would warrant Iraq pullout -- (Army Times)
The U.S. should pull its forces out of Iraq if that country descends into a sectarian civil war, the chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee said March 7.
Sen. John Warner, R-Va., a strong supporter of the U.S. invasion of Iraq, said he was speaking only for himself and not other Republicans, and that he doesn’t believe the term “civil war” now applies to Iraq. But his statements raise the possibility that a worsening of the security situation could turn calls for a pullout into a bipartisan chorus.
Khalilzad: A Pullout Is Still Possible -- (Time.com)...Aparisim Ghosh
...Khalilzad told TIME he remains optimistic: "I believe that if we get — when we get — the national-unity government, when we have ministries that are run by competent ministers, and as we get into the next phase of our Sunni outreach ... I see a set of circumstances, frankly, that would allow for a significant withdrawal of our forces."
Iraqi rights abuses 'increasing' -- (BBC)
"A climate of extreme violence" continued in Iraq, the report says
Reports of killings and torture by the Iraqi government and its agents increased in 2005, a US report says.
U.S. To Abandon Abu Ghraib And Move Prisoners To A New Center -- (New York Times)...Robert F. Worth
The American military said Thursday that within the next several months it planned to relocate all its detainees from Abu Ghraib prison, the sprawling penal compound west of Baghdad that became notorious throughout the world after photographs were made public of American soldiers abusing Iraqi prisoners there.
US to close Abu Ghraib prison -- (NZ Herald)
BAGHDAD - The US military will close Abu Ghraib prison, probably within three months, and transfer some 4,500 prisoners to other jails in Iraq, ...
Employer Of 50 Abductees Faced Inquiry About Links To Insurgents, Iraqi General Says -- (New York Times)...Kirk Semple
The Sunni-owned security company where about 50 employees were kidnapped on Wednesday was under investigation for allegedly collaborating with the antigovernment insurgency, an Interior Ministry official said Thursday.
Most In U.S. Believe Iraq Now Better Off; Allies Differ -- (San Diego Union-Tribune)...Will Lester, Associated Press
Two-thirds of people in the United States say Iraqis are better off now than under Saddam Hussein, but many longtime U.S. allies are less optimistic, AP-Ipsos polling found.
Afghanistan's Women -- [Misadventures of a Not-So-Intrepid Development Practitioner - in Afghanistan]
...Getting to know an Afghan woman, I have discovered, is a slow process. It takes months of superficial chatter before they reveal all. But now I have been here for over six months, I have had the privilege to make three good friends. These are their stories.
The Panjshir Valley -- [Miserable Donuts]
A look at the southern end of the Panjshir Valley in late Summer.
The area was reasonable fertile even during the drought that had gripped Afghanistan for 10 years, before breaking this past year. The Panjshiri were quite clever about irrigating their fields without benefit of pumps or motors - but by the end of Summer,
Facts on the plight of Afghan women -- (The News International)
KABUL: Afghanistan's women are among the worst-off in the world as measured by life expectancy, maternal mortality, malnutrition and other factors. The following are some of the details of the plight...
Kabul says its list is "accurate very strong" -- (Dawn )
KABUL, March 7: A rift between Afghanistan and Pakistan deepened on Tuesday as President Hamid Karzais office said intelligence about Taliban and Al Qaeda fugitives allegedly hiding in Pakistan was...
Afghan Terrorists Kill Policeman in Gunbattle -- (FOX News/ AP)
KABUL, Afghanistan — Suspected Taliban terrorists opened fire on a checkpoint in southern Afghanistan early Friday, killing one policeman and wounding three, an official said.
Look closer before knocking Afghan effort -- (CNEWS)...Licia Corbella
If only all Canadians could see what I've seen. If only they could have hugged the kids, held the hands, heard the stories that I have hugged, held and heard. Then 100% of Canadians would be in favour of our troops being in Afghanistan.
Instead, according to a recent Strategic Counsel poll, 62% of Canadians are opposed to sending troops to that country that suffered under more than 22 years of war -- including more than five years under the rule of the oppressive Taliban that forced women to wear burqas that cover them from head to toe, including a mesh over their eyes.
...The troops I met had helped dig 30 wells, distributed thousands of dollars worth of school supplies, dropped off food, heating oil and mattresses to impoverished orphanages and rebuilt schools and constructed desks. I've never been so proud to be Canadian as I was then.
While "winning hearts and minds" was a military plan, it also sprang spontaneously from the kindness of our troops.
It's why, in Kabul, citizens frequently warn our troops of planned attacks or tell them where caches of weapons are hidden.
Shaukat for bridging 'dangerous divide' between Islam, West -- (The News International)
LONDON: Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz regretting the "unjustified profiling of Muslims and vilification" called on Tuesday for bridging the "dangerous divide" between Islam and the West and dialogue for...
Under Pressure, Dubai Company Drops Port Deal -- (NY Times)
Bowing to a bipartisan attack in Congress, DP World said it would "transfer" terminal leases to an unnamed American company.
An Awesome Farewell -- [Something... and Half of Something] HT: Pettifog
An update on Army SGT Rickey Jones, who was killed in action Feb. 22 when an improvised explosive device detonated near his Humvee during patrol operations in Hawijah, Iraq. You will remember reading about the "brave dissenters" who expressed their "support for our Troops" by vandalizing his family home and telephoning his parents.
...Today we went out in the cold and rain to honor Kokomo's fallen soldier on US 31. There were about 50 of us all with flags and some with a big flag. When the procession started at about 11 am it didn't get over til about 11: 45 am. There were over 500 cars, 100 motorcycles(Patriot Guard Riders), and 10 to 20 military vehicles. Govenor Daniels was there along with the mayor of our town. I think I saw general, as well. Its was about 30 degrees, windy and rainy. Luckily the "Westboro Baptist Church" didn't show up, either. It was a good experiance and the people looked at us, and knew we cared.
It's Official.... -- [Another "Rosey" Day In Paradise] NEW MILBLOG RING MEMBER!
Yup that is right, it is official, CJ is signed and sworn in, off to Fort Benning he goes on the 5th of April. I am so very proud of him that he is follow what he has wanted since he started to talk.
...I have had so many friends ask if I am going to try and talk him out of it, am I going to try and talk him into another MOS. Nope...Not my decision to make, is his life. Aren't you worried he will be shipped out to Iraq. Now, don't get me wrong, Hell yah I am sure I will think about him many times if that situation crosses his path, but I am not going to let it rule my life and get sick and freeked out over it all. It is in the back of my mind and guess with dealing with so many that are deployed through Soldiers' Angels, that he will be deployed. We are at war after all and in infantry...
What Drives Your Life? -- [Thunder Run]
...When I was reading this chapter in Rick’s book I couldn’t help but wonder, “What drove men like Mike Stokely, Captain Danjel Bout, Russ Currie, Captain B and the thousands of other men and women who volunteer to go into harms way to serve their country? Why did they feel the pull and not everyone in this country?” And then I realized it…they had not let these emotions control their life, the realized that they were and are here on this earth for a reason and that reason for them lie in the path of the uniform. If you ever speak to Robert Stokely, Mike’s father, or read the short biography of Mike you’ll learn...
Marine Mom's Tribute to her Fallen Hero -- [Landry's Life]
A Marine Mom honors her fallen son and the 9 other Marines who died with him in Iraq. She commissioned a rolling tribute for her son and the 9 Marines.
Before They Leave, We Need To Learn -- [Ramblings Of An Infantry Mom] NEW MILBLOG RING MEMBER!
...I also say, when sending packages, address an envelope and then tape it to your boxes with clear packing tape. When the packages get to where they are going they are discarded in dumps and the 'locals' are there waiting to pilfer through the dumps to see what they can use. A lot of their searching is out of survival and to 'recycle' what has been discarded, but as we all see on the news everyday, these same people ARE the enemy at many times. By addressing this way, your soldier can remove that label and dispose of BOTH of your addresses properly. Just this last week I had a soldier convey this message to me as their family back here at home started receiving hate mail & threats at one time while they were deployed over seas in the 'war
Murtha To Get Profile In Courage Award -- (Houston Chronicle/ AP)
Rep. John Murtha, a Vietnam veteran who has denounced the war in Iraq, was named a recipient of the John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award on Thursday.
Army Is Asked To Delay Retirement Of General Who Oversaw Detention Operations -- (Mideast Stars and Stripes)...Jeff Schogol
Two key senators have asked the Army to postpone the retirement of Maj. Gen. Geoffrey Miller, who oversaw detention operations at Guantanamo Bay and Abu Ghraib prison, according to a letter obtained by Stars and Stripes.
Perhaps Cindy Does Have Some Shame... -- [Soldiers' Angels Germany]
Or maybe she's just beginning to think the whole thing was a bad idea. First she backed down on the visit to Landstuhl hospital, now she's using her recent arrest and "brutalization" by the NYPD as an excuse not to participate in the protest at Ramstein on Saturday.
But the show will go on, according to Elsa Rassbach of American Voices Abroad, Steve Mraz of Stars & Stripes reports.
Bush's Approval Rating Hits New Low -- (AP)
WASHINGTON (AP) - More and more people, particularly Republicans, disapprove of President Bush's performance, question his character and no longer consider him a strong leader against terrorism, according to an AP-Ipsos poll documenting one of the bleakest points of his presidency. Nearly four out of five Americans, including 70 percent of Republicans, believe civil war will break out in Iraq - the bloody hot spot upon which Bush has staked his presidency. Nearly 70 percent of people say the U.S. is on the wrong track, a 6-point jump since February.
Arab ally senses Bush no longer has control -- (Financial Times)
The decision by the United Arab Emirates on Thursday to order state-controlled Dubai Ports World to end its control over US port facilities marks the lowest point yet in the relationship between President George W. Bush and the Republican-controlled Congress.
The Most Powerful Weapon In The World -[Alex Jones' Info-Wars.net]
According to SCL, although it offers solutions for all departments of government, it "makes sense" to give total control of of their installations to the Head of State because other ministers of government may be "over zealous" or may not share the same vision.
Perhaps there may be some ministers who are not hell bent on destroying the freedoms of everyone and perpetuating endless psy-war on people and nations all over the planet? hmmm? Perhaps?
This is the future of the globalist police state takeover, they have the infrastructure in place, they have the ability to initiate the takeover NOW. However, they recognise that perception is everything and we are engaged within an INFOWAR.
They could not takeover tomorrow because not enough people would believe the perception of reality that they are transmitting. Currently we are in the majority, they still have a long way to go before their PSYOPS campaigns and "word of mouth units" can do an effective enough job.
Of course the main task currently assigned to the "Cultural Alignment Unit" is to create the perception that we are the minority, and that anyone who is not with the Government is with the "disaffected groups" more widely referred to as "the terrorists"
We are holding them off by spreading the truth and defending our freedoms in our own peaceful revolution of information. It is our reality that is at stake, they want to control our reality with conflict and disharmony and therefore they must continue to create the perception that that is the way the world is.
But Then Again -- [4Mile Creek - in Iraq]
How's this for slanting a story? The very first line of a story in the WaPo on how Americans are coming to view muslims as violent folk reads:
"As the war in Iraq grinds into its fourth year, a growing proportion of Americans are expressing unfavorable views of Islam, and a majority now say that Muslims are disproportionately prone to violence, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll."
Got that? It's not the hundreds of beheadings. It's not the bullet to the back of the head in a soccer stadium for failing to keep fully covered in a burka. It's not the bombs, the VBEIDS, the planes flying into buildings. It's not the death threat to cartoonists,
The Alaska oil leak and MSM propaganda -- [TigerHawk]
Some editorial decisions are impossible to explain.
Today we have the news that there has been a big oil spill from a leak in the trans-Alaska pipeline up near Prudhoe Bay. It is bigger than most that have happened up there, but nothing like the Exxon Valdez spill of 17 years ago.
...These beautiful trees are more than 800 miles from the two acres of dirty snow near Prudhoe Bay. This would be almost defendable if the editors didn't have any actual photos of the "spill," but they did. Here's the most graphic published photograph of the leak in question:
Soldier's Wife Says 'Bring It On' As Board Votes For Sign's Removal
Posted by SgtMgr at March 11, 2006 02:37 PM
Inspired by the posting on the Dawn Patrol about the soldier survey, I decided to post my own survey.
I think you'll agree it really captures the sentiments of the troops.Posted by Linda F at March 12, 2006 02:00 AM Hide Comments | Show/Add Comments in Popup Window(2) | (Note: You must refresh main page to view newly posted comments here)