July 19, 2007 / by emptywheel


Propaganda Squared

I’ve been referring to Brigadier Bergner as Baghdad Bergner since he first started giving press conferences. There was the press conference where he blamed Iran for the woes in Iraq, based on the interrogation of one Shiite. There’s this press conference where he blamed all the woes in Iraq on Al Qaeda in Iraq. The man clearly has no shame at telling the most transparent lies–from a podium not far from where his predecessor Baghdad Bob used to do the same.

But I gotta say, as someone whose credentials for analyzing all things postmodern are impeccable, this makes me dizzy.

In March, he was declared captured. In May, he was declared killed, andhis purported corpse was displayed on state-run TV. But on Wednesday,Abu Omar Baghdadi, the supposed leader of an Al Qaeda-affiliated groupin Iraq, was declared nonexistent by U.S. military officials, who saidhe was a fictional character created to give an Iraqi face to aforeign-run terrorist organization.

An Iraqi actor has been usedto read statements attributed to Baghdadi, who since October has beenidentified as the leader of the Islamic State of Iraq group, said U.S.Army Brig. Gen. Kevin Bergner.

Bergner said the new information came from a man captured July 4,described as the highest-ranking Iraqi within the Islamic State of Iraq.

Hesaid the detainee, identified as Khalid Abdul Fatah Daud MahmoudMashadani, has served as a propaganda chief in the organization, aSunni Muslim insurgent group that swears allegiance to Osama binLaden’s Al Qaeda.

Here’s our shameless propaganda chief, claiming that their shameless propaganda chief invented a bogeyman that we could then say we had captured. Because it’s not like we’ve invented such bogeymans for our own use, nuh uh, not us. And conveniently, this little hall of mirrors ends up right back where BushCo would like to have us, with the claim that Al Qaeda in Iraq is Al Qaeda is the War on Terror is the never-ending war is the big bogeyman no one seems to care about anymore.

Now, to her credit, reporter Tina Susman provides two caveats presumably designed to suggest she can tell bullshit when she sees it:

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Originally Posted @ https://www.emptywheel.net/2007/07/19/propaganda-squared/