Thursday, October 13, 2005

Cable News Nitwit: Former Saluki Spreads Standard Sheep Dip on Afghanistan

SIU-Carbondale hosted a celebrity speaker recently. He was one Walter Rogers, an SIU alumnus who made the big time as a CNN “embedded” reporter. The school paper, the “Daily Egyptian,” made quite a fuss. (Hey, Rogers had been on TEE-VEE!! He’d been on CNN!!)

I myself had not realized that becoming a CNN “embedded reporter” was much to be proud of. True, Rogers had risen to the top. But what had he risen to the top OF?

To me, listening to a CNN embedded reporter seemed a bit like hearing a lecture from Jack Horner, the sleazy but successful porn producer played by Burt Reynolds in “Boogie Nights.” They both rose to the top. The main difference would be that the porn industry is honest. They don’t pretend to be anything they’re not.

In any event, Rogers declared (according to the “Daily Egyptian”) that “We had no choice but to go to war in Afghanistan in 2001.”

My first reaction to that was what Tonto once said to the Lone Ranger: “What do you mean, ‘WE,’ White Man?” But I had no chance to say that to Rogers. So I wrote a letter of dissent to the DE. The letter went like this:

“Dear DE Editor:

“Rogers’s endorsement of the Afghan invasion is mainstream media malarkey. Here are just a few reasons why.

“First, none of the alleged 9/11 hijackers were Afghan. Most were said to be Saudis.

“Second, the official story of anti-modernist religious nuts stage-managing the incredibly sophisticated September 11 attacks from remote mountain caves has always been implausible -- at least without a lot more explanation than has ever been given. Let’s not forget that the rationale for blaming Afghanistan for 9/11 came from the exact same people who, just a few months later, constructed a mountain of lies about needing to invade Iraq. So why we should believe them about 9/11 is beyond me.

“Third, nothing was accomplished in Afghanistan except that some extraordinarily destructive weapons were tested on human guinea pigs. Our government directly killed three to four thousand innocents. Then it ran a sham election in which the Presidential winner was a former shill for Unocal Oil whom the American CIA had chosen to run the country even before 9/11/05. (see Tommy Franks’s book, “American Soldier,” or this UPI report:

“The Afghan people, though, are no freer than ever. Women there have no more rights than before. The economy is a disaster, with one exception. Afghanistan is back to being the world’s largest opium provider, after the supposedly evil Taliban had nearly eliminated poppy growth and opium export.

“Yours truly, [etc. etc.]”

I stopped there because newspapers don’t publish long letters. As it turned out, they didn’t publish my shorter one either. Well, news space is at a premium.

And so the fiction that Afghanistan was a GOOD invasion got another repetition. More importantly, the impression was reinforced that everyone agrees.

All thanks to the American Free Press and the college newspapers who emulate them.