Anti-Propaganda in the U.S.

Americans' suspicion of official U.S. propaganda has a long history, observes John Brown, a former Foreign Service Officer. Brown traces this tradition to the public backlash against the campaign mounted by the Woodrow Wilson administration to promote support for U.S. entry into World War I. "Hitler admired Allied propaganda," he notes, but "the American public turned against it (and the administration that had created it) after the war." Brown suspects that this tradition may come back to haunt the Bush administration: "The euphoria over the 'victory' in Iraq is now replaced by increasing doubts about how the Bush administration justified and reported on the war. ... Letters to the editor in major newspapers complain that the Bush administration lied about the war. ... Americans' suspicions of propaganda by their own government have a long history. It would not be surprising if this anti-propaganda tradition were to resurface given the growing controversy over the reasons the Bush administration led the country into war."