View Full Version : War in Iraq: Who Tells the Truth?

04-19-06, 08:18 AM
War in Iraq: Who Tells the Truth?
Written by Sharon Hughes
Tuesday, April 18, 2006

The American people have heard so many conflicting stories about the attitudes of the Iraqi people towards America, as well as our soldiers’ attitudes about the war effort, that reporting such stories has become a battleground in and of itself.

There is no doubt that negative feedback about the war is emphasized by the mainstream media which, while accusing legislators of politicizing the war, in fact are as guilty, if not more so, of doing the same. Case in point: Cindy Sheehan. Who would argue that the air-time and print-time given to this anti- war, poster-mom of the left wasn’t exhaustive? Yet hardly a mention has been given to the Blue Star Moms and others who have also lost sons in the war, and have something to say, but from a different point of view than Sheehan. Let’s not forget: the media made Cindy Sheehan.

The headlines of major print media, especially online where articles are grouped by topic, could be enough to make the less informed think that we are losing the war and that the effort and sacrifice paid already by our troops have been in vain. When you read the stories themselves, however, very often there’s little substance to support the headline’s accusations, once you get past the spin.

That’s why I like to read and hear it from the Iraqi people, our soldiers, and others who are not interested in politicizing the war.

Here’s an example from Franklin Raff, who reported in his article, “Media Treachery in Iraq Exposed!” for WorldNetDaily, about the Iraqi officer of significant rank who asked:

“Why do you people not tell our story? Why do you not say what is going on? Why do you come to our country and see what is happening, you see the schools and the hospitals and you see the markets and you eat with Sunni and Shia soldiers--everybody eats together, everybody works together--you see that Saddam is gone forever and we are free to speak and complain. You see we are working and eating together and fighting together--Sunni and Shia--you see what we are building here, you see the votes we make as one people. Then you say to the world about a great war and horrible things and how we are all killing each other? We are not animals! We are Iraqis. Look around you! Look!”

And there is Officer Dan Maher of the New York Police Department, who recently spent a year helping to train an Iraqi police force. He took a tape recorder with him to record his experience, and NPR radio recently interviewed him, also playing short clips of what he captured on tape (listen here). He tells his experience straight, just like it is. And many others have and are doing the same, but their voices are rarely heard.

I’ve interviewed several soldiers, officers, and journalists who have been in Iraq, and they all echo Dan Maher’s attitude.

No one wants to go to war, except aggressors who want to dominate the world. Not soldiers. Not officers. Not presidents. Not Americans. Not our allies. Not any civilized people or freedom-loving country. Nevertheless, when the safety of the people is at risk, both imminently and for the foreseeable future, the brave and understanding are willing to enter the fray.

There have always been, and always will be, the bullies of the world who will not stop unless they are stopped. That’s why war is a reality. And that’s why the great majority of us who stay at home while our troops defend us are so grateful for their effort on our behalf. That’s why “supporting our troops” fighting the war on terror is alive and well.

Oh, I know I’ll get a ton of mail from those who disagree. But I comfort myself with the knowledge that the vast majority of Americans wish that there was no such thing as war, but understand the consequences of not standing up to the bullies of the world. If you can say anything about America, you can say this: we will not be beaten in the school yard of the world.

To those who think my comments are ridiculous, let me ask you: what do you think of 9/11 terrorist Zacarias Moussaoui’s statements in court on Thursday, April 13, 2006, in anwser to Prosecutor Rob Spencer’s questioning?

Spencer: “So you would be happy to see 9/11 again?”

Moussaoui: “Every day until we get you. I’m glad there was pain, and I wish there will be more pain.”

Spencer: “So, you have no regret, no remorse?”

Moussaoui: “No regret, no remorse. We have an obligation to be the superpower. You have to be subdued.”

Is war a seamless operation? No. Is the war in Iraq running smoothly? What does that mean? War is hell! But, in the midst of it all, because of the bravery and sacrifice of our soldiers, much good is happening to defend us at home and to extend freedom in countries that have not known freedom.

Who is telling the truth about the war in Iraq? Those who don’t have an axe to grind. Those who are saying it like it is...like it really is.

About the Writer: Sharon Hughes is researcher, writer, producer, and hostess for "Changing World Views," a talk radio show. Sharon receives e-mail at sharon@changingworldviews.com.