16 Years Later, How the Press That Sold the Iraq War Got Away With It
Key Excerpts from Article on Website of Rolling Stone
Posted: April 1st, 2019
Sixteen years ago this week, the United States invaded Iraq. We went in on an unconvincing excuse, articulated by George W. Bush: Intelligence gathered by this and other governments leaves no doubt that the Iraq regime continues to possess and conceal some of the most lethal weapons ever devised. This regime has already used weapons of mass destruction against Iraqs neighbors and against Iraqs people. To the lie about the possession of WMDs, Bush added a few more: that Hussein trained and harbored terrorists, including operatives of al-Qaeda. WMD became the archetype of a modern propaganda campaign. In the popular imagination, the case for war was driven by a bunch of Republicans and one ... New York Times reporter named Judith Miller. Its been forgotten this was actually a business-wide consensus, which included the enthusiastic participation of a blue-state intelligentsia. The Washington Post and New York Times were key editorial-page drivers of the conflict; MSNBC unhired Phil Donahue and Jesse Ventura over their war skepticism; CNN flooded the airwaves with generals and ex-Pentagon stoolies, and broadcast outlets ABC, CBS, NBC and PBS stacked the deck even worse: In a two-week period before the invasion, the networks had just one American guest out of 267 who questioned the war. The WMD episode is remembered as a grotesque journalistic failure, one that led to disastrous war that spawned ISIS.