Saturday, August 18, 2007

Pentagon Censors Milbloggers, Media and Self but Still Loses to Media, Blogger

“There are plenty of good reasons for the military to be concerned about inadvertent release of "intel". But the fact is the US military as a whole is as guilty of providing such "intel" to a far greater degree than any single military blogger, or indeed of all of them.”

I’m quoting myself here from a post entitled Entire Army Shoots Self In Foot , in which I took the DoD’s arguments and suppositions (as reported in NewYork Newsday ) behind their ‘crackdown’ on "security-risk” milblogs (and their authors) to task.

That was written back in January 2006. Now in August 2007 comes this from Wired.com

"For years, the military has been warning that soldiers' blogs could pose a security threat by leaking sensitive wartime information. But a series of online audits, conducted by the Army, suggests that official Defense Department websites post material far more potentially harmful than anything found on a individual's blog.

The audits, performed by the Army Web Risk Assesment Cell (AWRAC) between January 2006 and January 2007, found at least 1,813 violations of operational security policy on 878 official military websites. In contrast, the 10-man, Manassas, Virginia, unit discovered 28 breaches, at most, on 594 individual blogs during the same period.

It took a FOIA request to get this information, which is also mighty interesting because I concluded my January 2006 post with this:

It's hard to draw any other conclusion than that the gagging of milblogs is nothing more than an exercise in political propaganda which does nothing to serve the soldier, the mission or the nation. The Pentagon itself has done far more to provide the "enemy" with the Intel it seeks, and to undermine morale in theater and at home though its incapacity to provide the troops with supplies and listen to their real-time field experience, than any milblog ever has.”

Note that the DoD was all too willing to publicly argue its case at the outset, and the fact that it took a FOIA request to publicly reveal the subsequent research that refutes their suppositions.

Now as gratified as I am at this validation of my arguments and conclusions, this doesn’t suddenly make me an expert, nor provide me with another opportunity to criticize the traditional media (which I and many other have often done and still do).

What it does show, is that an ordinary citizen with no “officially recognized” expertise and limited resources can, with a little thought thrown-in, determine actual reality on their own rather than relying solely on being spoon-fed the versions of self-perpetuating “experts” and “authorities”.

Score another one for the hate-filled, loony, lefty hippie bloggers!

(P.S. On the subject of US military meddling in the truth, here’s an old satirical post about Rumsfeld that might amuse; The Iraqi Free Press (a $100-million value!),
with the bonus of some actual Arabic phrases you can learn!

3 comments:

MrDoggity said...

An "ex" -- a washed up lost cause...
A "spurt" -- a drip under intense pressure.

An Expert -- a washed up, lost cause drip, under intense pressure.

Archer said...

"What it does show, is that an ordinary citizen with no “officially recognized” expertise and limited resources can, with a little thought thrown-in, determine actual reality on their own rather than relying solely on being spoon-fed the versions of self-perpetuating “experts” and “authorities”."

And that is the central power, vital strength and essential duty of an informed citizenry in the information age.

Good Stuff. Well reasoned. Well done.

You prove it works and give cause for optimism.

5th Estate said...

Doggity...
clearly you have no respect for "authoriteh" :D

Archer... thanks very much.
The orig. Newsday article was a straight piece of reporting. Even though mopre 'authorites' were quoted, the demoted milblogger was given the last pointed word.

But what the 'authorites' were saying was patently stupid, The reporter couldn;t or wouldn;t point that out, l;eaving the reader to take the arguments at face value or know some details of military procedures, or make the effort to find out.
Or have this story re-reported on TV where the newscasters editorialize often and with ignorance (or an agenda).

The web is a wonderful thing. No wonder people are moving away from the trad. media.