Good News is No News
By Lance Thompson Posted in Spotlight Blogs | War — Comments (21) / Email this page » / Leave a comment »
Promoted from Diaries - MartinAKnight
Why don’t the main stream media report our victories an enthusiastically as they do our defeats?
On Monday, Iraqi army troops, supported by American and British forces, delivered a major defeat to an insurgent cult and averted a deadly attack on Iraqi. News of this this victory has been overshadowed by coverage of the weekend’s anti-war rally in Washington, which purported to show how unjust, unwise and winnable the war is.
The victory occurred twelve miles from Najaf when Iraqi troops attacked a concentration of militants from the group Jund al-Samaa (Soldiers of Heaven). The terrorists had planned to disguise themselves as Shia pilgrims and attack Shia clerics and worshipers gathering in Najaf during Ashoura, the holiest festival in the Shia calendar. The attack was to include up to 700 terrorists, and would have resulted in a devastating and brutal massacre.
Instead, Iraqi troops discovered and attacked the Soldiers of Heaven as they gathered, igniting a fierce battle which raged for almost 24 hours. Iraqi troops requested assistance, and received American and British air support and help from American armored units. Iraqi military sources estimate 200 enemy dead, including the cult’s leader, Dia Abdul Zahra Kadim. A further 100 terrorists were captured, along with hundreds of automatic weapons, mortars and Russian-made rockets. Iraqi forces suffered 5 fatalities. Two Americans were killed when their helicopter went down during the battle.
This story has been given scant attention in the main stream media because of the preference endlessly to play excerpts from the massive anti-war rally in Washington over the weekend. Jane Fonda came out of protest mothballs to aid and comfort a new enemy, Sean Penn threatened to withdraw his support for politicians who refused to withdraw their support for the war, and Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins acted as co-ranters and chant leaders. California Congresswoman Maxine Waters announced that she wasn’t afraid of George Bush, nor was she intimidated by Dick Cheney, and the lack of any threats or intimidations from the White House would seem to verify her statement. Michigan Congressman John Conyers reassured the assembled masses by informing them that George Bush could not fire them–evidently no presidential appointees were present. And Jesse Jackson was present because there were more than two cameras pointed in the same direction.
You may have heard some or all of these highlights on Monday, but you’d have to be paying very close attention to hear about the military victory in Iraq. Imagine, however, if the results of the battle had been reversed. Imagine that hundreds of terrorists had attacked an American troop concentration. Imagine if 200 Americans were killed, and 100 captured, and the enemy had lost a handful of fighters. Would a major American defeat be given the same minimal coverage as a major American victory?
If the opposite outcome had occurred, video of casualties would have played all day, interspersed with film of terrorist supporters dancing in the streets and firing their weapons in celebration. We would have had chilling video from al Jazeera showing the leering countenances of the terrorist leaders, threatening even bloodier attacks. We’d have live coverage of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Hugo Chavez and Kim Jong-il declaring national holidays. And finally, we’d have “breaking news” bulletins of every Congressman, Senator, candidate, and non-working actor who could get to a microphone calling for retreat, surrender, and the resignations of every member of the administration right down to the White House gardener. The recriminations and indictments would go on for days, while every member of a House and Senate committee raced his or her colleagues to be first to call for an official investigation of the tragic defeat.
But instead of a defeat, instead of hundreds of dead American troops and hundreds more Iraqi civilians, it was the Soldiers of Heaven who paid the price. They were found out, engaged, and nearly annihilated before they could carry out their merciless murder spree. Iraqi forces took the initiative, fought bravely, and prevailed, as President Bush and military leaders have said they would. This was more than a military victory for allied forces. It was a demonstration of the dedication, courage and proficiency of Iraqi troops who have been trained by the world’s best--the American military. Yet this victory is little more than a footnote to the day’s news.
This brings to mind one question–why? Why is an American military victory so much less important to the media than an American military defeat? There can be only one answer, the one many journalists continue to deny even as they graphically chronicle our losses and denigrate our triumphs. The main stream media is institutionally invested in American defeat. That is why the bad news is emphasized and the good obscured. If Americans realized that the Iraqi army is growing strong, that terrorists are being killed in large numbers, that the conflict is a noble endeavor to save innocent lives, and most of all, that it can be won, then the unthinkable could happen. American readers, listeners and viewers would turn off the tap on the news sources that have lied to them all this time, and seek the truth elsewhere.