By Bridget Gibson
There is a new term that has been coined by the Pentagon:
Transfer Tubes. It has been spent quietly into the
background of the war on Iraq (a.k.a. "The War on Terrorism,"
"Operation Iraqi Liberation [OIL]," or "The
Cakewalk and Flowers Campaign.")
The effectiveness of this administration's control on the
national media is unprecedented in its scope. In ways, large
and small, the view that is seen by most of the American population
has been so controlled and sanitized that it is unrecognizable
In April, we were shown a film of the statue of Saddam being
pulled down. The sanitized view was a narrow lens version
- a full version would have shown that there were no joyous
crowds cheering and no support for the U.S. army tank and
troops that produced this manufactured image of the moment
The national news media has been trying to show the "happy
happy joy joy" version of events in Iraq. We are told
to focus on the "progress" of new currency and landscaping
around the square.
Our view is constantly shuttered and there are many things
that we are not allowed to see. The propaganda machine is
in full swing so as to corrupt the opinion of the American
public into supporting our administration's abuse of power.
The corporate media machine, through shows such as "Survivor,"
"Joe Millionaire" and "Extreme Makeover,"
willingly shows people eating worms, having casual sex, and
extols the virtues of discarding and discounting our physical
It is amazing that people can watch a plastic surgeon take
a chisel and break someone's facial bones, but not be allowed
to view the returning caskets of our military personnel that
have made the greatest personal sacrifices for their country.
Cameras are not allowed at The Walter Reed Army Hospital
to show the maimed and injured soldiers. Cameras are not allowed
to show the returning caskets of our honorable fallen heroes.
The media is not allowed to show the conditions at Fort Stewart,
where military personnel wait for treatment that is scarce
It is taking an act of Congress to stop the Pentagon from
charging our wounded military $8.10 a day for their meals
while they are hospitalized. Will it take another to supply
the toilet paper that must be bought during their incapacitation
Although these are grave injustices to our service men and
women, perhaps the most horrendous lack is that of protective
body armor. Nearly 32,500 troops have not been issued appropriate
equipment that would prevent their deaths.
This shoddy treatment is disgraceful and must be rectified.
While our best and bravest put their lives daily in the
line of fire after George W. Bush's bizarre declaration of
"Mission Accomplished," our country continues to
hand up corporate welfare to the tune of $142 Billion in tax
cuts for Halliburton and Bechtel.
George W. Bush's shallow campaign to politicize his war
on the deck of the USS Abraham Lincoln was topped last week
by his denial of the White House's involvement in the banner
that flew in the staged background. Although the Washington
Post editorial on May 4 stated "Aides say the slogan
was chosen in part to mark a presidential turn toward domestic
affairs as his campaign for reelection approaches," the
White House confession only emerged after his denial and the
shifting of blame to the troops that had to wait an additional
day to return to their homes for his photo-op appearance.
While our troops are threatened by incompetent and self-serving
bureaucrats that have failed to formulate a post-victory plan
in Iraq, George W. Bush has begun his $2000-a-plate whistlestop
fund-raising campaign across the heartland.
We need a change of leadership in Washington. We need politicians
who are committed to the principle of liberty and peace. We
need politicians who share the moral courage of our military
personnel and our citizenry - A reform in Washington to prosperity
for all, not just the few and chosen greedy and ideologically
driven that wrap themselves in our flag and distort the vision
of peace into the crusade of war.