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Pentagon Propaganda Program Exposed

Pentagon Propaganda Program Exposed

The New York Times has revealed new details on how the Pentagon recruited more than 75 retired military officers to appear on TV outlets as so-called military analysts ahead of the Iraq war to portray Iraq as an urgent threat. The Times reports the Pentagon continues to use the analysts in a propaganda campaign to generate favorable news coverage of the administration’s wartime performance. Internal Pentagon documents repeatedly refer to the military analysts as “message force multipliers” or “surrogates” who could be counted on to deliver administration themes and messages to millions of Americans in the form of their own opinions. Reporter David Barstow called the program “a symbiotic relationship where the usual dividing lines between government and journalism have been obliterated.” The so-called analysts were given classified Pentagon briefings, provided with Pentagon-approved talking points and given free trips to Iraq and other sites paid for by the Pentagon. The propaganda campaign also extended into the nation’s newspapers. Nine of the Pentagon-connected analysts wrote op-ed articles for the New York Times and The Pentagon helped two retired military officers write a piece for the Wall Street Journal. Many of the same retired military officers also have ties to military contractors vested in the very war policies they were asked to assess on air.

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