Going to war depends first
on selling it. Gaining public support is vital. Previous articles discussed
it. Walter Lippmann coined the phrase "manufacture of consent."
Edward Herman and Noam Chomsky discussed the "propaganda model" in their
book titled "Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass
Media scoundrels use it to manipulate and control public thinking and
perceptions. News and information are filtered. Acceptable "residue"
only is reported.
Dissent is marginalized. Government and dominant private interests are
Michael Parenti explained:
"The enormous gap between what US leader do....and what American's think
their leaders are doing is one of the great propaganda accomplishments...."
In their book titled "Propaganda and Persuasion," Garth Jowett and Victoria
O'Donnell defined their topic as "the deliberate, systematic attempt
to shape perceptions, manipulate cognitions, and direct behavior to
achieve a response that furthers the desired intent of the propagandist."
Richard Alan Nelson described the technique as follows:
"Propaganda is neutrally defined as a systematic form of purposeful
persuasion that attempts to influence the emotions, attitudes, opinions,
and actions of specified target audiences for ideological, political
or commercial purposes through the controlled transmission of one-sided
messages (which may or may not be factual) via mass and direct media
"A propaganda organization employs propagandists who engage in propagandism—the
applied creation and distribution of such forms of persuasion."
Propaganda has different forms. Advertisers use it to generate sales.
So do politicians to get elected. Religious leaders use it to indoctrinate
the faithful. So do nations to promote their agendas.
When war is planned, it's used to create fear, demonize enemies, dehumanize
them, falsely accuse them of atrocities and other crimes, and enlist
public support for intervention for alleged humanitarian reasons.
In 1917, George Creel first used propaganda successfully to turn pacifist
Americans into raging German-haters.
In his 1928 book titled "Propaganda," Edward Bernays said it's possible
to "regiment the public mind every bit as much as an army regiments
"If we understand the mechanism and motives of the group mind, is it
not possible to control and regiment the masses according to our will
without their knowing about it?"
In his book titled "Taking the Risk Out of Democracy: Corporate Propaganda
versus Freedom and Liberty,” Alex Carey said:
"The twentieth century has been characterized by three developments
of great political importance: the growth of democracy, the growth of
corporate power, and the growth of corporate propaganda as a means of
protecting corporate power against democracy."
It's also used to launch wars, trick enemies for strategic purposes,
and deceive the public while waging them. Media scoundrels play a crucial
role. People are manipulated to think aggressive wars are just ones.
Big lies launch them. None achieve peace, security and stability. One
conflict begets others. Endless destructive cycles follow. Countless
millions die. Vast destruction ravages countries. Human misery, not
Human needs go unmet. Wealth, power, and imperial interests only matter.
Successful propaganda convinces people that what harms their well-being
actually helps them.
Post-9/11, America waged multiple direct and proxy wars. They continue
without end. Obama itches for more. Syria is target one, then Iran,
then other nations for unchallenged US dominance. At issue is can humanity
On June 11, Global Research published Russian journalist Marat Musin's
firsthand observations of what really happened at Houla. He exposed
media scoundrel misinformation and lies. Doing so provided a vital service.
Western-enlisted death squads bear full responsibility. Government forces
and/or so-called pro-Assad shabbiha had no involvement.
Scoundrel media and Western officials provided fabricated accounts of
what went on. It was classic, duplicitous propaganda. It rages to enlist
public support for war.
Musin's article is powerful reading. Circulating it widely is important.
Only public rage can stop wars. Nothing else works. Knowing the truth
and spreading it has impact. Imperial America and war profiteers fear
It's time ordinary people got radicalized for their own well-being.
Focus first on ending imperial wars. Imagine what's possible at peace.
Imagine public needs prioritized over conquests and domination. If that's
not worth fighting for, what is?
Below is a snapshot of what Musin wrote. Read his article for the full
On May 25, Houla was attacked by hundreds of "bandits and mercenaries."
Ar-Rastan-based and Free Syrian Army terrorists were responsible.
Civilians abandoned the town of Ar-Rastan. Lebanese Wahhabi/Salafist
extremists dominate the area. With foreign money and weapons, they carry
out terrorist attacks.
When killer gangs entered "the lower checkpoint in the center of" Houla,
they attacked pro-government residents.
"Many of those killed were 'guilty' of....dar(ing) to change from Sunnis
to Shiites." They were murdered in cold blood "with knives (or) shot
at point blank range."
Scandalous accounts blamed Assad. Government forces and/or supporters
had nothing to do with it.
Musin called UN observers claiming they heard artillery fire "a bad
joke." Assad's forces were in Homs, 50 kilometers away.
"After a visual inspection of (Houla), it is impossible to find traces
of any of fresh destruction, bombing and shelling....Militants used
heavy weapons and snipers..."
Official and scoundrel media reports wreak of inconsistencies and duplicity.
"Militants opened fire on virtually everyone who tries to get closer
to (Houla). Before us a UN convoy was fired upon and two armored jeeps
of the UN observers were damaged, when they tried to drive up to an
army checkpoint in Tal Dow."
"....(M)any of the militants are professional snipers."
"....(B)andits even fired an automatic burst on our group of journalists...."
About 108 civilians were killed, including 38 or more young children.
They were executed in cold blood. They were pro-government loyalists.
Musin discussed media disinformation, saying:
"To exert pressure on public opinion and change the positions of Russia
and China, texts and subtitles in Russian and Chinese languages were
prepared in advance, reading:
'Syria Homs the city of Hula. A terrible massacre perpetrated by
the armed forces of the Syrian regime against civilians in the town
of Houla. Dozens of victims and their number is growing, mainly women
and children, brutally killed by indiscriminate bombing of the CITY.'
"Two days later, on May 27, after the residents’ stories and video recordings
made showed that the facts do not support the allegation of shelling
and bombing, the bandits’ videos had undergone significant changes."
"At the end of the text appeared this postscript: 'And some were killed
with knives.' "
Musin reported what everyone needs to know and tell others. Pentagon
war plans were ready months ago. Obama itches to attack Syria. Perhaps
Houla or another planned incident will trigger it.
On Friday, Syria's Human Rights Council representative, Faisal al-Hamwi,
blamed Houla killings on terror gangs. They're trying to incite sedition,
"No sane person can believe some of this session's sponsors when they
show sorrow and pain for the victims at the time when they participate
in killing the Syrians and shedding their blood," he added.
On June 1, the Human Rights Council met to discuss Syria. Washington
pressure assured its conclusions in advance.
United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, blamed
Assad for killer gang crimes. She wrongly said the "Syrian military
allegedly unleashed a barrage of heavy weapons on" Houla, "including
artillery and tank fire...." She also blamed "pro-government Shabiha
Doing so ignored clear evidence of responsibility. She wants government
officials prosecuted at the International Criminal Court. Western and
complicit regional states' accountability wasn't mentioned.
On June 2, the State Department claimed satellite images show Houla
mass graves. Assad was named responsible. Alleged nearby artillery craters
were also shown.
So-called images can be easily manipulated and/or fabricated. They can
also be from other areas unrelated to Houla or Syria. State Department
claims are spurious and unverified. So are scoundrel media reports about
On Friday, Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich
said preliminary government investigations showed a well-planned operation
carried out by gunmen intent on violence, not a diplomatic solution
to Syria's conflict.
He blamed weapons and funding supplied foreign mercenaries.
Houla killings advanced the ball closer to war. Launching it could happen
anytime, with or without Security Council authorization.
Doing so will ignite a regional firestorm. Imagine the potential catastrophic
consequences. Future updates will cover more.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His new book is titled "How Wall Street Fleeces America: Privatized
Banking, Government Collusion and Class War"
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge
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