War and war reporting

I am endlessly fascinated by war. Read this: John McCain’s op-ed in the WSJ about Gen. Vo Nguyen Giap.

The U.S. never lost a battle against North Vietnam, but it lost the war. Countries, not just their armies, win wars. Giap understood that. We didn’t. Americans tired of the dying and the killing before the Vietnamese did. It’s hard to defend the morality of the strategy. But you can’t deny its success.

Then read this: a piece in the London Review of Books by Patrick Cockburn on war and war reporting.

But the very term ‘war reporter’, though not often used by journalists themselves, helps explain what went wrong. Leaving aside its macho overtones, it gives the misleading impression that war can be adequately described by focusing on military combat.

One thought on “War and war reporting”

  1. According to reports quoted by Chomsky. 1st objective of the VN War was to break Vietnamese economy because they could have propagated Communism and dominated all SE Asia. 2nd objective was to win the war.
    1st objective complete…

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