War Propaganda in Iraq
Controlling Information in the Attack
The author, who wrote
this on November 12, 2004,
is active in the labor and antiwar movements in the Philadelphia area. He reports:
month’s slide presentation and discussion of the Iraq
war organized by the Philadelphia Anti-War Forum will focus on the ongoing U.S.
assault on Fallujah. It will be on Thursday, November
18, 7 pm, at The Rotunda at 4014
Walnut Street in Philadelphia.
The first target of the U.S.
assault on Fallujah chosen by U.S. commanders was the city’s main health care
military officials asserted that insurgents had taken control of the hospital
and were “forcing the doctors there to release propaganda and false information.”
Over the past year and a half it has been the doctors and staff
of Fallujah General and other clinics in the city
that have provided the most authoritative accounting of the dead and wounded
attacks. In the U.S.
offensive of April 2004, correspondents reporting from Fallujah
General documented the killing of 800 and wounding of 1,800 in the three-week
urban assault. Since July when the Allawi government
began “authorizing” U.S.
airstrikes against Fallujah,
the hospital’s medical staff provided aid to a steady flow of casualties. Their
daily accounts and accompanying photos exposed the U.S. war propagandists’ claims of “precision
By taking out Fallujah General the U.S. military
both denies medical aid to the city’s wounded (a violation of Geneva
Conventions), and effectively eliminates from the international media any
prospect of a reliable accounting of the ensuing attack.
As the U.S. military forces proceed to “incinerate” entire
sections of the city with massive bombing, artillery and ground attacks, the
November 11 Philadelphia Inquirer
informs us, “Civilian casualties in the attack are not known, though U.S.
commanders say they believe the numbers are low.”