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Opening Arguments

Free press? No, but reasonable

Score one for John McCain for not being "terribly offended" and thus bringing a little common sense to the "startling" revelation that the U.S. military is paying to have positive stories printed in Iraqi newspapers. The U.S. press is in a state of high pique -- "My God, we're supposed to be bringing Iraq to democracy and we're actually subverting the free press!" -- as if the whole world operated by the same rules as SUV-driving editors of daily newspapers in staid American suburbs. A propaganda technique is being used in a war -- horror of horrors -- against an enemy who has known better than us how to use it since 15 minutes after 9/11.

Posted in: Current Affairs