Michael Yon writes – far more eloquently and intelligently than I could – the post about Iraq that has been working through my brain for the last three months.
It’s magisterial, in the sense of
Of, relating to, or characteristic of a master or teacher; authoritative: a magisterial account of the history of the English language.
and we should be taught by him. Here’s a small sample:
But what I saw (and see) as the biggest threat to the outcome was not the increase in sectarian violence among Iraqis. The biggest threat to this mission, and by extension to the future stability of this region and the long term security of the United States and our allies, is and always has been the inability to see, hear and communicate the truth to the American people and our allies. In the final analysis, it is not going to matter if the French support our mission in Iraq, but once Americans turn away from their soldiers in the field, we’ve lost.
In order to fund my own fact-finding in Iraq and Afghanistan, I asked my attorney last week to look into selling some of my photos. His response, in part, which came to me yesterday:
Sadly, what I am hearing is that the demand for material from both countries is way, way down. The market has dried up and the competition from almost free AP photos and US Army material means most agencies do not want to take on someone whose work is primarily war-related at this time.
We have gotten our troops into combat and now we are ignoring them. It’s little wonder that Americans would be angry at me for calling a civil war a civil war. Most of them have no idea what is going on! But this is not the sole fault of the media: if there were great demand for information from the wars, they would dispatch legions of journalists. It is the people at home who are ignoring our people at war.
I cannot strongly enough encourage you to read his piece.