Bill Moyers Journal: Buying the War

84 minutes 9.4/10 based on 5 votes

The story of how the media bought what the White House was selling has not been told in depth on television. In 2003 the media surrendered its independence and skepticism to join the government on a march to war, a war that was so poorly planned that it soon turned into a real disaster. The Bush Administration seemed to have taken a leave on reality when it misled the Americans into thinking that it was necessary to attack a country that had not attacked America. The media helped justify this invasion by spreading the Administration’s false propaganda.

The atmosphere in the United States after September 11, 2001 was so overwhelmingly patriotic that it wasn’t difficult to get everybody onboard with the idea of revenge. People felt it was their duty to do something about the terrorist attacks, and so they eagerly lined up with the president’s plans. In so doing, they allowed their emotions to guide them. Little space was left for any scrutiny from journalists, and anyone who questioned the decision to invade was pointed out and deemed unpatriotic.

When the media informed about the civilian casualties of the war, advertisers and viewers condemned them through hundreds of threatening emails and calls. So a memo was sent out telling networks not “to focus too much on the casualties or hardships in Afghanistan”. The reporters were asked to balance the images of civilian devastation with reminders of September 11. That way people would remain focused on the reasons why the war was justified.

Saddam Hussein was quickly targeted as the enemy and there were publications stating that 9/11 had been “sponsored, supported and perhaps even ordered” by this man. A few analysts and experts found this connection to be absurd, and felt that Washington was stretching bits and pieces of information to connect Saddam Hussein to Al Qaeda, but had no concrete evidence. Intelligence was being manipulated in order to make the case for war. And so young men and women were sent to kill and to be killed for no good reason.

By the time troops were finally withdrawn from Iraq in 2011 after nearly nine years, the number of Americans killed exceeded the number of victims killed in 9/11. The war on Iraq took much longer than it took to defeat the Nazis in WWII. The cost of the war was reckoned at over one trillion dollars. The number of Iraqis killed is hard to determine, and the country was left in chaos. Watch this thought-provoking film now.

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  • awful_truth

    Interesting how Brian Williams is suspended for 6 months for lying, yet how many years later, not one official has been held accountable for lies that have led to a complete de-stabilization of the entire middle east. (Egypt, Syria, Libya, Iraq, etc)

    • James Johnson

      So where is the war crimes trials?
      why the support of what was so obviously handled so wrong by an imbecile of a man who had ties to the biggest office in the land?

      • awful_truth

        Since the American government doesn’t believe in international law, and have a veto at the U.N, who is going to enforce it? (war crimes that is) Question; which imbecile are you referring to? (there are so many) I am also unsure as to what you think I am supporting. (please clarify)

        • James Johnson

          The imbecile with an IQ of 85, Junior or Dubya he is called. He had no right to be in that office. The last 30 years of the presidency has been seriously screwed up. Where else can a president carry out business and lose not one single life in a foreign war and be called the worst president ever? Carter. Where else can you have a president that shows respect and dignity to other world leaders and be absolutely hated by republicans? Obama. Where else can you have all that and then have a shoot first ask questions later and let god sort ’em out cowboy wanna be with an IQ barely sufficient to get him into elementary school, and HE gets to be president? Bush Jr. I mean seriously WTF?

          • awful_truth

            So, if I am reading you correctly, you are referring to George Bush Jr. If you were responding to my original comment, I made it quite clear that I have no use for him, his family, or their politics, (manifest destiny) let alone support them. (you may want to read it again) Since Bush junior was never elected in 2000, (supreme court put him in) your issue appears to be with the delusion regarding democracy in America. The fact that a 3rd Bush wants the presidency in less than 30 years is a great indicator that democracy does not exist. (in the land of 300 million, this is all you get to choose from?) With that said, if the chump (Trump) gets in, we all better starting storing canned foods in our heavily fortified rec rooms, because he will start the 3rd world war. (another rich idiot)
            P.S: It would appear that we both the same contempt for today’s modern day insanity. Take care, and best wishes!

            • James Johnson

              Agreed. You as well.

              Sent from my T-Mobile 4G LTE Device

              ——– Original message ——–

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