I'd have to agree that whatever deterrent value this conflict might have had
has been lost due to the heavy media coverage of US casualties - has anyone
noticed that there's almost no coverage of losses inflicted on Iraqi attackers?
- and domestic criticism in the US and Britain.
Seen clear-eyed, the war remains a considerable strategic achievement (it
seems to me), and taking on Iraq made much more sense than trying on either Iran
or N. Korea. If you had to finish off one to try and scare the other two,
Iraq was the safest bet.
On another front: the NY Times ran a story the other day about video disks
being distributed in Syrian border villages encouraging attacks on US troops
patrolling the border and showing what appeared to be an American - at any rate,
a white male - being beheaded, while surrounded by a cheering crowd. The
Pentagon denies that any US casualty was beheaded.
Can anyone add anything to this story? Has anyone ever heard of an incident
like this that might be serving as the material for the videodisk - I'm
thinking something that might have happened elsewhere at some other time. I've
heard of Soviet soldiers being beheaded on film in Afghanistan in the 1980s and
the tapes being used to raise funds in the Gulf. Ditto Chechnya, although in
that case you didn't have cheering crowds. I'm wondering if someone's adapted
some old footage to a new cause.