WASHINGTON — Lieutenant Daniel Zimmerman, an infantry platoon leader in Iraq, puts a blog on the Internet every now and then “to basically keep my friends and family up to date” back home.
It just got tougher to do that for Zimmerman and a lot of other US soldiers. No more using the military’s computer system to socialize and trade videos on MySpace, YouTube, and nine other websites, the Pentagon says.
Citing security concerns and technological limits, the Pentagon has cut off access to those sites for personnel using the Defense Department’s computer network. The change limits use of the popular outlets for service members on the front lines, who regularly post videos and journals.
from the Boston Globe
It was just a matter of time before the information control freaks at the Pentagon nixed battlefield blogging. They know that should the hoary fog of war ever actually lift, the warrior’s world would be doomed, because exposed to the light of day and the sound of human voices bubbling up from below, rather than sonorous, solemn pronouncements from the powers that be up above, the civilian population will never support these overgrown playground brats and bullies blowing people and places to kingdom come just to mollify and accommodate their aggressive and destructive psychoses.
This is just one more example of the paradox of modern warfare. It is possible today to create weapons that are way more deadly, sophisticated, destructive and efficient than ever before. But it is also now impossible to hide the messy effects of their operation from civilians back home, who are footing the bill and in whose name they are being used.
Since Vietnam, the first modern war to be beamed directly into the living rooms of America, we have seen again and again that the viewing public will not tolerate images of murder, maiming and mass destruction in their name. Maybe a lightning thrust to save some hostages or overthrow a particularly onerous dictator, campaigns along the lines of the Six-day War, but certainly not a dirty, deadly, prolonged ground campaign, much less an exposed occupation. Despite the best efforts of military managers, there is no way to stop the flood of images, blog postings, email and guerrilla video from pouring out of the war zone, and given this information overload, no way to preserve popular support for the war.
Information wants to be free, and free information can stop the warmongers in their tracks, for the simple reason that their actions are against the interests of the country and the far majority of it’s citizens. No longer should the many suffer and die to serve the testosterone poisoning of the few.
Unfortunately, the disengagement from the present fiasco will be long and bloody in its own right, and those who do profit from war will continue hoisting these manufactured conflagrations on the rest of us until we elect some folks who “get it” and can start preparing for mankind’s mature evolution into sane stewards of our planetary inheritance.