This week on CounterSpin: US news media are full of armchair generals who talk about weapons of war like they’re Hot Wheels, and have lots of thoughts about how “we coulda got ’em” here and “we shoulda got ’em” there. The price of admission to elite media debate is acceptance that the US, alone among nations, has the right to force change in other countries’ governments; and when this results, as it always does, in death and destruction, elite media’s job entails telling the public that that’s not just necessary but somehow good. Not to put too fine a point on it.
All of this and more is on display in coverage of the US troop withdrawal from Afghanistan—along with, as usual, some exceptional countervailing reporting. Ending the US occupation could mean a new day for the Afghan people, but with the anniversary of September 11 coming up, it looks like US media consumers may need not a broom but a shovel to deal with the self-aggrandizing, history-erasing misinformation headed our way. We’ll prepare ourselves with insights on Afghanistan from Phyllis Bennis, director of the New Internationalism Project at the Institute for Policy Studies, and from Matthew Hoh, senior fellow with the Center for International Policy.
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