Sunday, December 18, 2016

Patrick Cockburn — There's More Propaganda Than News Coming Out of Aleppo This Week

It has just become more dangerous to be a foreign correspondent reporting on the civil war in Syria. This is because the jihadis holding power in east Aleppo were able to exclude Western journalists, who would be abducted and very likely killed if they went there, and replace them as news sources with highly partisan “local activists” who cannot escape being under jihadi control.
The foreign media has allowed – through naivety or self-interest – people who could only operate with the permission of al-Qaeda-type groups such as Jabhat al-Nusraand Ahrar al-Sham to dominate the news agenda.
The precedent set in Aleppo means that participants in any future conflict will have an interest in deterring foreign journalists who might report objectively. By kidnapping and killing them, it is easy to create a vacuum of information that is in great demand and will, in future, be supplied by informants sympathetic to or at the mercy of the very same people (in this case the jihadi rulers of east Aleppo) who have kept out the foreign journalists.
Killing or abducting the latter turns out to have been a smart move by the jihadis because it enabled them to establish substantial control of news reaching the outside world. This is bad news for any independent journalist entering their territory and threatening their monopoly of information.
There was always a glaring contradiction at the heart of the position of the international media: on the one hand it was impossibly dangerous for foreign journalists to enter opposition-held areas of Syria, but at the same time independent activists were apparently allowed to operate freely by some of the most violent and merciless movements on earth....
Why everything in the Western media about Aleppo is fake news created by jihadis and jihadi sympathizers. "Jihadi sympathizers" includes the Western mainstream including the MSM.

But what about the moderates, you say?
There was a period in 2011 and 2012 when there were genuinely independent opposition activists operating inside Syria, but as the jihadis took over these brave people were forced to flee abroad, fell silent or were dead.
Probably most in the West have no idea that their governments are allied with al Qaeda, its affiliates and other jihadis because they believe what they are told. The Big Lie depends on being so big that most people don't doubt it. In the West, most people are still taken in by propaganda, even through they known that they have been taken in the past. The saying, 'Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on you," doesn't always hold. Publics are extremely gullible and politicians, PR people, and advertisers know this and take advantage of it.

Propagandists should read the Aesop fable, "The Boy Cried Wolf." This tactic of controlling the narrative with fake news will end up backfiring.

The social fabric underling functional society is based on trust. When trust breaks down, so do societies. As the social fabric frays, social dysfunction increases.

I would also remind people that post 9/11, constitutional liberties were suspended by the Patriot Act and other legislation, domestic security was militarize, posse comitatus was suspended for the military to operate domestically, intelligence services were provided with unlimited surveillance, effectively transforming a liberal democracy in to a police state, a national security state, and a surveillance state, in which the chief executive has the power of indefinite detention and even summary assassination (read execution).

The Unz Review
There's More Propaganda Than News Coming Out of Aleppo This Week
Patrick Cockburn

1 comment:

Bob said...

Yes, I can see there is huge support in America for US involvement in Syria.