Modern wars are no longer only determined by what happens on the ground, on the seas and in the air. There is a fourth dimension of warfare and that is the media. Depending on the side a media outlet chooses to be on and the narrative it is following, not only the opponents will be sketched as evil but also the effectiveness and righteousness of the supported campaign will be stressed. Illegally armed forces with foreign mercenaries and financial support become moderate rebels when they fight against the allegedly bad side. Merciless bombing of infrastructure and facilities will be sketched as surgical precision bombing when executed by the side which is supported. When however the side which is opposed executes the same bombing of infrastructure and facilities, the civilian casualties will be overexposed by the same media which is hailing the accuracy and rightfulness of the side it is supporting.
The conflict in Syria shows yet another dimension where Russia and the International Coalition are both claiming to do the same but with different political objectives. And these political objectives influence the reporting in the media significantly more than what is actually happening in Syria. The International Coalition set as objective to topple the Syrian Government and in the process fight the terrorist organization under the names IS/ISIS/ISIL/DAESH in both Syria and Iraq. Russia on the other hand, set out to support the Syrian Government in its fight against all opposing armed fractions in Syria and in the process strikes Daesh so hard that Russia itself has become one of their targets.
And in the middle of this all, Turkey plays a dubious role by actively supporting armed fractions in Syria to topple the Syrian Government and is openly accused of supporting the Daesh terrorists with supplies and financing though oil sales. Even if that would only take place on an uncontrolled black market, Turkey still carries responsibility in its refusal to close the borders with Daesh and rebel held territories. At the same moment, Turkey strikes hard against Kurdish forces which seem to be the only native forces that actively and effectively fight the Daesh terrorists. The downing of the Russian SU-24 fighter jet raised even more questions about Turkish true objectives in the Syrian Conflict.
Media and moderate rebels…
In all this horror and hell on earth for the population of Syria, the media have long ago stopped being critical and unbiased in their reporting. Whatever sells determines what is reported and what the public wants to hear, read and see is unfortunately what sells best so that is what sets the focus of the media. As a result, we now know the concept of moderate rebels.
Moderate rebels seem to be those who fight against whomever is declared to be the bad guy by the West, even when they openly support those who are fought elsewhere. In Syria, the Syrian Government and the Syrian President have been declared the bad guys by the West and that makes anyone fighting the bad guys automatically the good guys. But they too fight, bomb, launch assaults with mortars and grenades, they too destroy infrastructure and cause civilian casualties. This would make them bad guys. No, they are moderate rebels so all is good again. Some Western media outlets even go as far as making beheadings of Syrian Armed Forces look harmless…
Someone’s rebel is someone else’s freedom fighter
The same rebels and the Syrian Government are seen entirely different in the Russian media, and guess what? The perspective of bad guys and good guys is inverted accordingly. What the West calls moderate rebels are seen as illegally armed and foreign funded organizations fighting against the legal Government of Syria. Where Western Governments and media outlets focus on differentiating between moderate rebels which they support and terrorists they oppose and continuously lose track in the middle of it all, the Russian Government and media take a much more pragmatic approach on who is who in the Syrian Conflict. Whomever fights the Syrian Government is an opponent and a rightful target of the campaign by the Russian and Syrian Armed Forces and their supporters. The UN Charters seem to support that perspective but that doesn’t seem to bother neither the Western and Turkish Government, nor the media outlets supporting them.
Media and bombing accuracy…
On bombing, the media have developed a matching concept. Bombing by the good side is done with surgical precision whereas bombing by the opposing side is very inaccurate and causes civilian casualties and seems to be always targeted against civilian facilities with a humanitarian purpose. The concept is so effective that media outlets at all sides of the equation have adopted it and follow it by the letter. Laser Guides Bombs, Long Range precision targeting Missiles, all very accurate and only pointed against valid military targets by the side which is supported. And at the same time, the same type of weapons are inaccurate and pointed against civilian targets when delivered by the opposed side.
Besides the fact that the majority of the delivered ordinance is still Free Falling Bombs which are at best delivered within expected window and range, these so called surgical precision ordinance is far from as accurate as we are made to believe. Accuracy isn’t only determined by the ability to deliver the ordinance on the predetermined target within a small range and window. Accuracy is also determined by the result after delivery: THE DETONATION!
Even when all goes right, every little detail works as planned and the ordinance is delivered spot on target, the ordinance will detonate. Whatever the weapon may be, it is built to cause destruction and it will do just that. The explosion and the effect of the explosion is determined by the type of weapon and the surrounding it explodes in. Fragmentation, damages to the object, secondary explosions, all plays a role in the effect and destruction caused by the explosion. No matter how accurate the delivery of the weapon is or isn’t, the explosion of the weapon and the damage and destruction it causes are uncontrolled.
There is no surgical precision bombing, there are no moderate rebels.
Even if there would be pinpoint accuracy and surgical precision in delivering the weapon, there is no such thing as pinpoint accuracy and surgical precision in the explosion. So there is no such thing as surgical precision bombing, no matter which side you support. Just as much as there is no such thing as a moderate rebel. These are nothing but invented terminology by policy makers to make YOU believe that there is something like a good side in a war. There isn’t a good side in a war. War causes death and destruction, regardless of who started it and who thinks to be on the winning side.
War isn’t hell! Hell is where sinners go, war is where innocent die!
Get of your high horse of moderate rebels and precision bombing. The bombing of the past decades created the rebels and the rebels cause more bombing. Stop it, all of it! Let the media report on the devastation caused by war, all of it. Every child that dies in a war deserves full coverage by the media and condemnation by humanity. Every child, no matter in which side the parents of the child are believed to be. And never forget that every soldier in every war is someone’s child! Stop it, all of it!
It never was the soldier who died in a conflict that started the conflict. It are always the politicians who decided that yet another war is needed and are never held accountable for their crimes. Stop it, all of it! You and only you have the power to do so! Vote wisely, vote every time you can!