Monday, April 28, 2008

Gettin' out of Dodge

Tom Engelhardt takes a long look at one of Blog Simple's favorite subjects, The Greatest General EVAR!, AKA King David, AKA General Petraeus. While marveling at his talent for self-promotion and showing up in the media in his preferred role of savior, the article points out the unspoken facts about GGE!, whenever he moves on, he leaves behind a disaster. Mosul, check, Iraqi Army training, check, and now the biggest escape of all time, out of Iraq as the surge's true outcome is being manifested, open war between the Shiites and the destruction of Sadr City:

The problem is: Putting a face -- that is, a mask -- on something has nothing to do with changing it in any essential way, no matter how you brand it and no matter who's listening to you elsewhere. This August or September, when the general takes over at Centcom, he will leave behind (as he has before) the equivalent of an IED-mined stretch of Iraqi roadside ready to explode, possibly under the coming U.S. presidential election. It remains to be seen whether he will once again have made it out of town in the nick of time and relatively unscathed.

The miracle, of course, was that, so late in the game, the American media swallowed the President's (and the general's) propaganda on the surge campaign which, on the face of it, was ludicrous. Stranger still, they did so for almost a year before the situation started to fray visibly enough for our TV networks and major papers to take notice. For that year, most of them thought they saw a brass band playing fabulously when there was hardly a snare drum in sight.

That result may be a public-relations man's dream, but it was thanks to a con man's art. The question is: Can the President make it back to Texas before the bottom falls out in Iraq? And will the general continue to fall ominously upward?

But it really wasn't a miracle at all. The American media has been swallowing and liking Republican propaganda since the days of Reagan. It got a lot worse under Clinton, and since 9/11 it has been in virtual lock step with all of the insane policies, lies, blunders, crimes and corruption of our 'leaders'.

They're now lining up with McCain, who espouses the same policies as Bush, and competes with him at the level of intellectual vacuity and good ol' boy idiocy. We had thought that Fred Thompson was the born successor to Bush, but McCain is even less engaged than Thompson, no naturally he got the nod.

For the media, Petraeus is perfect. He fulfills his role in the delusion machine to a tee, the media keeps moving with him, always with their eyes (and yours) locked ahead so you don't notice the pile of bodies in the backwash of events.


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