What kind of war is this, anyway?

Strategy Page has two stories that highlight the conflict over the conflict. In What was not said, gunship video is used in media outlets to assert that the US is murdering reporters. Roughing Up The Enemy is about a sergeant and a captain were dismissed from the Royal Marines because they beat up an Afghani they caught planting a roadside bomb.

The ‘murdered’ reporters were hanging out with armed men in the wee hours of the morning only yards from a firefight.

The mass media generally went along with the “it was murder” line, while more knowledgeable journalists and military personnel pointed out the fact that this was a legitimate combat operation, and that the journalists (who were not in the employ of the terrorists) were being very foolish to accompany armed terrorists at 3 AM, on a combat mission.

The disciplinary action for failing to pull punches is not unusual, either.

Such disciplinary action is not restricted to British forces. Three U.S. Navy SEAL commandos are being prosecuted for hitting an Iraqi terrorist they captured last year. The Iraqi was responsible for the murder of four civilian security contractors in Fallujah six years ago, and many other atrocities since. The SEALs are accused to punching the prisoner in the stomach.

The stories about these ‘atrocities’ are usually dripping in condescension and moral superiority and certainty. It is enough to make one wonder what reference is being used to form opinions and world views.

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