The Department of Defense ran an elaborate "Psy-Op" against the American people when it was selling the invasion of Iraq. The New York Times' David Barstow penned a superb front-page story on Sunday based on thousands of newly released Pentagon emails. Like everything else Iraq-related we learned that it is far worse than even the most cynical among us expected.
Media analysts Norman Solomon, Glenn Greenwald, FAIR, and others have long pointed out that the corporate news media relied heavily on retired military officers posing as independent "analysts" for their pro-war opinions leading up to the invasion of Iraq.
What Barstow has revealed is the degree of coordination between these "analysts" and the civilian leadership at the Pentagon as well as the astounding conflicts of interests these former officers had. Not only did these officers who dominated our television screens on Fox News, CNN, ABC, CBS, and NBC, loudly beating the war drums during the months leading up to the U.S. invasion, have special access to Pentagon "talking points" to promote the lies that led us into war (i.e. WMDs, Saddam-Al Qaeda links, etc.) but these men also were poised to line their own pockets through their lobbying firms and by serving on the boards of military contracting corporations that stood to make fortunes if the war became a reality.
Nothing is more despicable than former military officers behaving like a bunch of Enron executives committing treason by knowingly lying to the American people about matters relating to war and peace. I always feared that the "ticket punchers" who climbed the officer ranks during the Vietnam War might not turn out to be men of character (compared to the WW II-Korea era), but now there is empirical proof.
In Pentagonese these former officers were called "Message Force Multipliers" and "Surrogates." Their job was to coordinate the propaganda of the DoD to shove the war down the throats of the American people. They knew they were lying and deceiving. They stood to profit personally from war contracts. Victoria Clarke, who can be seen all over the corporate media as "Torie" hawking her book, coordinated the Pentagon's propaganda ministry and sought "information dominance" on the public air waves to sell the Iraq invasion. It has to go down in history as the most successful Psy-Op ever run domestically. Four-thousand and fifty American lives and $700 billion later I hope they're proud of their accomplishment.
Torie Clarke and the rest of them were on the receiving end of millions of dollars in contracts and were chomping at the bit to get this war going.
The following former military officers who Barstow identifies in his lengthy piece should be barred from the public airwaves and forced to testify to Congress about their secret Psy-Op they participated in against the American people:
Col. Ken Allard
Lt. General Tom McInerney
Maj. General Bob Scales
General Montgomery Meigs
Maj. General Don Sheppard
General Joe Ralston
Col. Jeff McCausland
General Barry McCaffrey
Lt. General Tim Eads
Maj. Bob Bevelacqua
Lt. Colonel Bill Cowan
Captain Chuck Nash
Brig. General James Marks
General William Nash
General Richard Myers
General Peter Pace
Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld
These Benedict Arnolds should be hauled up to Capitol Hill to testify about the crimes they perpetrated against their fellow citizens and against their country. General Dwight D. Eisenhower warned us about these guys.