Instructive lesson on the 'freedom of speech' of the military
"Throughout last year, the Army, Marines, Air Force and Navy tightened control on bloggers by requiring them to register through the chain of command and by creating special security squads to monitor milblogs.This highlights an important point, which non-military personnel may not appreciate. Every time you read or hear a military spokesperson talk about how the Iraq War is going, you're not seeing a free actor, able to communicate his or her experiences and/or opinions to you openly and honestly. Instead, you're dealing with someone who may as an individual be trustworthy, but whose military duty requires them to spin as morale-boosting a tale as possible - and that includes lying and deliberate obfuscation, as we've seen over the years with the British in NI and latterly with the US in Afghanistan and Iraq.
"The ones that stay up are completely patriotic and innocuous, and they're fine if you want to read the flag-waving and how everything's peachy keen in Iraq," said Hartley, who is back in New Paltz after two years stationed in Iraq."
Post-Vietnam, the necessity of 'winning' the PR war with pesky journalists turning over rocks was learned, and learned well. Hence embedding, and hence also the policy of stamping out swiftly any honest soldier accounts of what war is really like, and what the real situation on the ground is. Bear that in mind the next time you see yet another rosy soldier's story promoted on right-wing blogs.