Tuesday, April 24, 2007

An Asinine Slogan For An Asinine Concept

We weren't terribly impressed around here when Rumsfeld debuted the nebulous slogan "The Long War" for U.S. misadventures in the "war on terror." See New Propaganda Catchphrase: "The Long War".

The masters of war are premiering a catchy new propaganda slogan: "The Long War." This is an attempt to inure Americans into seeing nothing abnormal about a state of permanent war. ...

"We can't agree it's global, we can't agree it's terrorism, but we all generally agree it's a war . . . [and] it's going to be long," Carafano said. "Transnational terrorism is the problem of the 21st century."

Everyone agrees? Who is this we? You and all the other defense industry jerkoffs, that's about it. And the cowardly sheeple who are your natural constituents.

It seems that now the current brass are equally unexcited about using that particular formulation.

When the Bush administration has sought to explain its strategy for fighting terrorism, it has often said the United States is involved in a "long war" against Islamic extremists.

The phrase was coined by Gen. John P. Abizaid before he retired as head of the Central Command. It was intended to signal to the American public that the country was involved in a lengthy struggle that went well beyond the war in Iraq and was political as well as military.

It would be a test of wills against "Islamofascism," as President Bush once put it. It would also be a historic challenge that spanned generations much like the battles against Communism.

As it turned out, however, the long war turned out to be surprisingly short-lived, at least at the command that pioneered the term. After taking over last month as the head of Central Command, Adm. William J. Fallon quietly retired the phrase.

Military officials said that cultural advisers at the command had become concerned that the concept of a long war alienated Middle East audiences by suggesting that the United States would keep a large number of forces in the region indefinitely.


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