'Bye to Hi,' U.S Middle East Propaganda Failure

"The U.S. State Department announced yesterday it was suspending publication of Hi Magazine, its glossy, monthly attempt to win the hearts and minds of young Arabs, part of a communications troika it established following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. ... The magazine had been derided by commentators in the Arab world as 'schlock'' or 'brainwashing'' and one had dubbed it the CIA's official publication.


Americans Oppose Fake News in Iraq

"Almost three-quarters of Americans think it was wrong for the Pentagon to pay Iraqi newspapers to publish news about U.S. efforts in Iraq, a new USA TODAY/CNN/Gallup Poll shows. USA TODAY reported earlier this month that the Pentagon plans to expand beyond Iraq an anti-terrorism public relations campaign that has included secret payments to Iraqi journalists and publications who printed stories favorable to the USA. ...


Cutouts Speak Out

"U.S. military officials in Iraq were fully aware that a Pentagon contractor regularly paid Iraqi newspapers to publish positive stories about the war, and made it clear that none of the stories should be traced to the United States, according to several current and former employees of Lincoln Group," report Mark Mazzetti and Kevin Sack.


The Information War

"The media center in Fayetteville, N.C., would be the envy of any global communications company," writes Jeff Gerth. "In state of the art studios, producers prepare the daily mix of music and news for the group's radio stations or spots for friendly television outlets. Writers putting out newspapers and magazines in Baghdad and Kabul converse via teleconferences. Mobile trailers with high-tech gear are parked outside, ready for the next crisis. ... The center is not part of a news organization, but a military operation, and those writers and producers are soldiers.


Shocked (or Not?) at PR and PsyOps in Iraq

After the Los Angeles Times reported that the Pentagon, through the Lincoln Group, was planting "favorable stories about the war and the rebuilding effort" in Iraqi newspapers, military spokespeople "offered a mixed message" about the program.



The Cinema and Media Studies Department at Carleton College in Minnesota has created a website,, which gathers news and commentary about public and personal photographic image practices associated with the "war of images in the Middle East." Items in their collection include photos of the dead bodies of Saddam Hussein's sons, the beheading of Nick Berg, the Bush "Mission Accomplished" photo op, and a variety of real and faked images depicting human rights abuses, atrocities and other staples of wartime propaganda.


Rewriting History

“It is deeply irresponsible to rewrite the history of how (the Iraq) war began,” Bush scolded his critics in his Veterans Day speech on November 11. But as Robert Parry observes, Bush is the one doing the rewriting. "Bush’s argument is that he didn’t lie the nation into war; he and his top aides were just misled by the same faulty intelligence that Congress saw," he writes.



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