Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Is Iraq On The Brink Of Civil War? Or Not?

Back on February 23rd I asked the question, "Is Iraq On The Brink Of Civil War?". I got a few mixed comments, but all in all, the jury is still out. I guess it all depends on who you read and/or listen to.

For instance, if you read the Washington Post, then you will be more inclined to believe that it is.
This article claims that the majority believes that it is likely. And they have conducted a poll that they claim validates that assumption.

An overwhelming majority of the public believes fighting between Sunni and Shiite Muslims in Iraq will lead to civil war and half says the United States should begin withdrawing its forces from that violence-torn country, according to the latest Washington Post-ABC News poll.

The survey found that 80 percent believe that recent sectarian violence made civil war in Iraq likely, and more than a third say such a conflict was "very likely" to occur. Expectations for an all-out sectarian war in Iraq extended beyond party lines. More than seven in 10 Republicans and eight in 10 Democrats and political independents believe civil war was likely.


Now, one has to ask, "where is a link to that poll?". Could it be that they are afraid their methodology will be scrutinized and as a result, their results considered skewed, just as they were in the
recent CBS poll? You know the one, the one that weighted the sample with 409 Democrats, 337 Independents, and 272 Republicans. So, as you can plainly see, anyone that puts a lot of faith in a poll conducted by any media outlet in the MSM, will be open to strict scrutiny.

But if you read personal accounts from people that have been there and seen the place with their own eyes, you get a very different picture. Take
this article that appears in the NY Post, for example. It is a scathing indictment on the journalists that are there in Iraq, and insist on exaggerating the scene to the degree that it appaers that there is mass chaos, fighting daily on the streets, and that the streets of Baghdad are full of armed insurgents just waiting to kill innocent people, to include American journalists.

I'M trying. I've been trying all week. The other day, I drove another 30 miles or so on the streets and alleys of Baghdad. I'm looking for the civil war that The New York Times declared. And I just can't find it.

Maybe actually being on the ground in Iraq prevents me from seeing it. Perhaps the view's clearer from Manhattan. It could be that my background as an intelligence officer didn't give me the right
skills.


And riding around with the U.S. Army, looking at things first-hand, is certainly a technique to which The New York Times wouldn't stoop in such an hour of crisis.

You really should read the whole thing, it does not speak highly of many of the American journalists' information gathering techniques.

Now, do not get me wrong on this. This is still a very sticky situation that can go either way, especially as the WaPo points. Once the U.S. troops leave, will be the real test. But what kind of chance will the new Iraqi government ever have, if the MSM continues to portray the conflict as a resounding defeat for the U.S.-led coalition and the Iraqis.? What chance will they have if they keep getting skewed polls, inaccurate data, and a constant flow of deliberate misinformation?

Answer: Not much.

But as for me, I will rely more heavily on a journalist that gets out into the field and sees things for himself, rather than relying on one that sits at his cushy newsroom desk or one that gets his information delivered to his hotel room in Baghdad, via the rumor mill.


Cross-Posted at
The Wide Awakes

4 comments:

gandalf said...

I have a rather cynical view of the potential civil war in Iraq.

As we all know, only too well these adversarial groups of Muslims have been trying to wipe each other out for the past 1200 years or so.

Who are we to stop them, after all would that not do the world a favour?.

well it's a thought, maybe not a very good one, but a thought none the less.

A.C. said...

Peronally I don't think Iraq is headed for civil war, and I would guess that most Iraqis and American military probably don't as well. But if the polls in America and Britain say its true, it still amounts to a victory for AQ.

My guess is that a majority of folks are busy just getting by in life, and don't have time to dissect the news by reading blogs, etc. If the MSM tells them Iraq is nearing a civil war, then its hard to remove that impression.

LASunsett said...

From Gandalf: Who are we to stop them, after all would that not do the world a favour?.

Reagan didn't stop Iraq and Iran in the 80s. We all laud him for being instrumental in bringing down the wall, but knowing what we know now and looking back at how he handled that situation back then, he really was a visionary.

Good points as always, sir.



From AC: My guess is that a majority of folks are busy just getting by in life, and don't have time to dissect the news by reading blogs, etc.

I dont know. You may very well be right. A lot of people don't have computers and if they did, as you say, they may be too busy. But as time passes, you will see the blogosphere swell. It's doing it now and it will continue to do so, in the future.

Remember one thing AC, you never know who may happen upon your blog. Many people read and do not comment. All it takes is having a good idea in one post and a seed can be planted.

Good points on your part too, sir.

Always On Watch said...

The biased MSM want to see the U.S. fail in Iraq. But they refuse to discuss what Gandalf mentioned: these adversarial groups of Muslims have been trying to wipe each other out for the past 1200 years or so. Any discussion of that topic might force an open discussion of the ugly history of Islam.