Thursday, July 21, 2011
1 Million Dead in Iraq? 6 Reasons the Media Hide the True Human Toll of War — And Why We Let Them
Most Americans turn a blind eye to the violent acts being carried out in their name.
John Tirman, AlterNet, July 19, 2011
An Iraqi policeman walks past destroyed cars at the site of a blast near the Iranian embassy in Baghdad. Iraqi forces were on high alert in Baghdad on Monday after 30 people were killed in bomb attacks on foreign embassies blamed on delays in forming a new government after the general election a month ago.
Photo Credit: AFP – Ali al-Saadi
As the U.S. war in Iraq winds down, we are entering a familiar phase, the season of forgetting—forgetting the harsh realities of the war. Mostly we forget the victims of the war, the Iraqi civilians whose lives and society have been devastated by eight years of armed conflict. The act of forgetting is a social and political act, abetted by the American news media. Throughout the war, but especially now, the minimal news we get from Iraq consistently devalues the death toll of Iraqi civilians.
Why? A number of reasons are at work in this persistent evasion of reality. But forgetting has consequences, especially as it braces the obstinate right-wing narrative of “victory” in the Iraq war. If we forget, we learn nothing.