Friday, October 14, 2005

Buzzflash lead article on another staged "media" event 

Well, "media" as in "mediaeval", as in "media-crity". What a shame, and what a sham.

Article text in italics, my comments in plain text:

It was billed as a conversation with U.S. troops, but the questions President Bush asked on a teleconference call Thursday were choreographed to match his goals for the war in Iraq and Saturday's vote on a new Iraqi constitution.

His goals are to give Halliburton 52% of the rebuilding dollars in Iraq, $10.7 BILLION since 2004; to continue an eternal war to be able to extort profits for all his cronies; to spend $500 (or is it $1 million?) for every $1 the Al Qaeda spends in a war started on lies.

"OK, so let's just walk through this," Barber said. "Captain Kennedy, you answer the first question and you hand the mike to whom?" "Captain Smith," Kennedy said. "Captain. Smith? You take the mike and you hand it to whom?" she asked. "Captain Kennedy," the soldier replied. And so it went.

Of course, Bush had Rove in his headset, just like the three pre-election debates, so they didn't need to walk him through it.

Before he took questions, Bush thanked the soldiers for serving and reassured them that the U.S. would not pull out of Iraq until the mission was complete. "So long as I'm the president, we're never going to back down, we're never going to give in, we'll never accept anything less than total victory," Bush said. The president told them twice that the American people were behind them. "You've got tremendous support here at home," Bush said.

Define total victory. That would mean not one US soldier dies, right? Because a death sure seems to be at least a partial defeat to me. If he had 100,000 deaths, it would mean total defeat, right? So, it looks like only 98% (or is it 90%? I think we should count listed casualties, as well) of a total victory is yet possible. Far less on other scales (like impact of worldwide US credibility). Hard to accept anything less than something that doesn't exist. Like I said, eternal war. Oceania. Winston Smith.

Less than 40 percent in an AP-Ipsos poll taken in October said they approved of the way Bush was handling Iraq. Just over half of the public now say the Iraq war was a mistake.
White House press secretary Scott McClellan said Thursday's event was coordinated with the Defense Department but that the troops were expressing their own thoughts. With satellite feeds, coordination often is needed to overcome technological challenges, such as delays, he said. "I think all they were doing was talking to the troops and letting them know what to expect," he said, adding that the president wanted to talk with troops on the ground who have firsthand knowledge about the situation.

Well, of course, technically, they were their own thoughts, right as Broca's area kicked in and they formed the questions. But they could only get ten soldiers to interview? Ten soldiers willing to lie to be on TV? Even LBJ could speak in front of a full regiment in 1968.

The soldiers all gave Bush an upbeat view of the situation. The president also got praise from the Iraqi soldier who was part of the chat. "Thank you very much for everything," he gushed. "I like you."

I'm sure that wasn't staged. I often fall in love with folks I've never met. Or maybe it's just some of the same charisma Rove so loves in Butch-Bush. I know, this URL should be beneath The Bite, but when a (failed) Administration goes out of its way to have an anti-gay message, the question does need to be asked.

On the training of Iraqi security forces, Master Sgt. Corine Lombardo from Scotia, N.Y., said to Bush: "I can tell you over the past 10 months, we've seen a tremendous increase in the capabilities and the confidences of our Iraqi security force partners. ... Over the next month, we anticipate seeing at least one-third of those Iraqi forces conducting independent operations." Lombardo told the president that she was in New York City on Nov. 11, 2001, when Bush attended an event recognizing soldiers for their recovery and rescue efforts at Ground Zero. She said the troops began the fight against terrorism in the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks and were proud to continue it in Iraq. "I thought you looked familiar," Bush said, and then joked: "I probably look familiar to you, too."

"Yes, sir, I did read Curious George as a kid" (This one is not beneath anybody).

Paul Rieckhoff, director of the New York-based Operation Truth, an advocacy group for U.S. Veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan, denounced the event as a "carefully scripted publicity stunt." Five of the 10 U.S. troops involved were officers, he said. "If he wants the real opinions of the troops, he can't do it in a nationally televised teleconference," Rieckhoff said. "He needs to be talking to the boots on the ground and that's not a bunch of captains."

Since when is the US media-crity about the truth?


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