And this one won't cost you a dime...so everyone can help.
I'm very pleased to have you among the circle of readers who come here in search of the better news about Operation Iraqi Freedom. We are a tight little community and I'm proud to call you my friends.
But does it ever strike you as unseemly that you, whether you are in Minnesota, Michigan, Texas, Alaska, South Carolina or where ever, had to stumble into this site (or hear about it from a friend who stumbled into it) so you could get your nearly daily dose of hope and positive perspective on the efforts of our brave Soldiers on behalf of this nation, the Iraq nation, and the vision of the President of the United States?
As I said...I'm proud you drop by and read the results of my searching...and I'm flattered you listen to the thoughts of a retired Lieutenant Colonel. But doesn't it stike you that as an American you shouldn't have to go to such lengths to get a glimpse into the truth of what is happening over there?
Time after time after time we have read right here the stories of Soldiers who tell reporters "you guys are not telling the whole story...in fact you are telling only the worst parts of it".
But it doesn't seem to change.
Well, now a Marine officer has stepped forward and asked for your help.
Please read every word of this...and then take action. Note up front that I've added emphasis to certain passages.
Request For Help from Marine Serving in IraqWhat is worse is that the media at large seem to be following the lead of Al Jazeera, the most disgusting example of a so-called news organization on Earth.
Marine Corps Counterintelligence Association | 4/21/04 | 1st Lt. Robert L. Nofsinger USMC
Hello Everyone, I am taking time to ask you all for your help.
First off, I'd like to say that this is not a political message. I'm not concerned about domestic politics right now. We have much bigger things to deal with, and we need your help.
It seems that despite the tremendous and heroic efforts of the men and women serving here in Iraq to bring much needed peace and stability to this region, we are losing the war of perception with the media and American people. Our enemy has learned that the key to defeating the mighty American military is by swaying public opinion at home and abroad. We are a people that cherish the democratic system of government and therefore hold the will of the people in the highest regard. We love to criticize ourselves almost to an endless degree, because we care what others think. Our enemies see this as a weakness and are trying to exploit it.
When we ask ourselves questions like, "Why do they hate us?" or "What did we do wrong?" we are playing into our enemies' hands. Our natural tendency to question ourselves is being used against us to undermine our effort to do good in the world. How far would we have gotten if after the surprise attacks on December 7, 1941 at Pearl Harbor, we would have asked, "Why do the Japanese hate us so much?" or "How can we change ourselves so that they won't do that again?" Here in Iraq the enemy is trying very hard to portray our efforts as failing and fruitless. They kill innocents and desecrate their bodies in hopes that the people back home will lose the will to fight for liberty. They are betting on our perceived weakness as a thoughtful, considerate people. Unfortunately our media only serves to further their cause.
In an industry that feeds on ratings and bad news, a failure in Iraq would be a goldmine. When our so-called "trusted" American media takes a quote from an Iraqi doctor as the gospel truth over that of the men and women that are daily fighting to protect the right to freedom of press, you know something is wrong. That doctor claimed that out of 600 Iraqis, that were casualties of the fighting, the vast majority of them were women, children and the elderly. This is totally absurd. In the history of man, no one has spent more time and effort, often to the detriment of our own mission, to be more discriminate in our targeting of the enemy than the American military. The Marines and Soldiers serving in Iraq have gone through extensive training in order to limit the amount of innocent casualties and collateral damage.
Yet, despite all of this, our media consistently sides with those who openly lie and directly challenge the honor of our brave heroes fighting for liberty and peace. What we have to remember is that peace is not defined as an absence of war. It is the presence of liberty, stability, and prosperity. In the face of the horrendous tyranny of the former Iraqi regime, the only way true peace was able to come to this region was through force. That is what the American Revolution was all about. Have we forgotten? Freedom is not free and "peace" without principle is not peace. The peace that so-called "peace advocates" support can only be brought to Iraq through the military. And we are doing it, if only the world will let us! If the American people believe we are failing, even if we are not, then we will ultimately fail.
That is why I am asking for your support. Become a voice of truth in your community. Wherever you are, fight the lies of the enemy. Don't buy into the pessimism and apathy that says, "It's hopeless," "They hate us too much," "That part of the world is just too messed up," "It's our fault anyway," "We're to blame," and so forth. Whether you're in middle school, working at a 9-5 job, retired, or a stay-at-home mom you can make a huge difference! There is nothing more powerful than the truth. So, when you watch the news and see doomsday predictions and spiteful opinions on our efforts over here, you can refute them by knowing that we are doing a tremendous amount of good. Spread the word. No one is poised to make such an amazing contribution to the everyday lives of Iraqis and the rest of the Arab world than the American Armed Forces. By making this a place where liberty can finally grow, we are making the whole world safer. Your efforts at home are directly tied to our success. You are the soldiers at home fighting the war of perception. So I'm asking you as a fellow fighting man: Do your duty. Stop the attempts of the enemy wherever you are. You are a mighty force for good, because truth is on your side. Together we will win this fight and ensure a better world for the future.
God Bless and Semper Fidelis, 1st Lt. Robert L. Nofsinger USMC Ramadi, Iraq
While it is difficult to isolate a single cause, the shift in opinion does not appear to be motivated by either an increase in the popular mandate of Muktada al-Sadr's cause, or by any alliance of convenience between the Sunnis and Shias. Rather, it is a backlash -- a visceral negative response to the perceived wrongs committed by the Coalition. It is, in other words, the Al Jazeera effect.What can you do? Anything you can to advance the cause of truth.
Following the Marine offensive in Falluja, Iraqi journalists began grilling Coalition officials at nearly every briefing as to why Americans were targeting women and children, and why the Americans were punishing so many innocent Iraqis for the wrongs committed by the few who desecrated the bodies in Falluja. Coalition spokesman Dan Senor and Brigadier General Mark Kimmitt explained that the Coalition is not executing a campaign of collective punishment, is targeting only those who had demonstrated themselves to be violently anti-Coalition, and is following strict rules of engagement and stringent policies concerning the use of force. But these assurances fell on deaf ears. The journalists had seen the purported proof of the Coalition's barbarity: they had watched satellite networks like Al Jazeera and Al Arabia.
Upon modest examination, however, the evidence of Coalition inhumanity turns out to be a combination of half-truths and no-truths. For example, these networks reported that the Coalition dropped a JDAM on a mosque in Falluja. This much is true, however many news sources failed to report why the bomb was dropped, or incorrectly stated that the action was unprovoked. In reality, anti-Coalition forces had overtaken the mosque, and were using the high ground of the minarets to fire on Coalition forces. The bomb was dropped to permit the Marines to breach one side of the mosque, and thereby to return order. By omitting any reference to the gunmen in the mosque, media outlets were able to neatly transform an act of self-defense on the part of the Marines into a purported violation of the Geneva Convention.
A good start would be a letter to the editor. Quote the Marine Lieutenant if you need to...let the media know you see through them.
Follow the example of the Lutz Patiots...band together...wave the flag...show others that you are behind our Soldiers and our cause.
Drop a note to your Senator or Represenatative...let him or her know that in fact you support the cause of liberty...goodness knows they're getting an inordinate amount of mail from the other side.
If you get an email forward that spouts the usual leftist pablum about Oil and Haliburton and Bush Lied...reply to all...and refer them to CPT Patti's website...or Sarah's or Greyhawk'sor Hook's or Smash's or Patriette's or any of the other excellent sites on the MilBlogs Ring.
We cannot, must not allow history to repeat itself. Consider this excerpt for a moment:
(After the TET offensive) Support for the war eroded and demands that we get out reached a crescendo. The irony in all this is that the Communist insurgents were beaten decisively during the Tet offensive. But what they lost in battle in Vietnam the Communists won in the American media and in public opinion shaped by the media.Think what you will of him, but on November 3d, 1969 President Richard Nixon addressed the American people - and on this he was not wrong:.
In later years, after the Communists were firmly in power in Vietnam, they admitted that the Tet offensive was a military disaster for them. In a 1995 interview in the Wall Street Journal, a Communist official stated frankly that the key to their victory was the American home front, and that they were encouraged to fight on by all the anti-war demonstrations in the United States.
If a vocal minority, however fervent its cause, prevails over reason and the will of the majority, this nation has no future as a free society...Well, today the Soldiers and Marines need our support.
And so tonight -- to you, the great silent majority of my fellow Americans -- I ask for your support.
You have seen the filter the major media apply to the news from Iraq. What that teaches us is that every day there are folks actively working to limit the true message coming out of Iraq.
There must be a counter force...and we must be it.
I ask myself today...what have I done to counter this message? Mostly I preach to the already converted. We've got to do better than that...all of us. We must be silent no more.
The media prophecies of Iraq becoming another Vietnam are a tip of the hand that the media themselves intend to duplicate their subterfuge they performed in the 60s.
Don't let them.
Soldier after Soldier after Marine have been quoted (ironically) in the local press that the news media are telling the worst possible version of the story. CPT Patti has told me that her Soldiers were thrilled to get TV...only to become rapidly disgusted at the news they stopped watching it.
So ask yourself...who do you trust more? Soldiers who do what they do because they are good, honest, hometown sort of Americans...or the heads of CNN, ABC, New York Times, AP, Reuters, etc?
No contest, from where I sit.
Do something...now matter how small...today. And again tomorrow. Let us be silent no more.
Remember - they are working to get out their disinformation. What are we doing?
(My thanks to Bobby Sr. for the link and the Lutz Patiots for the letter.)