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Essay: Documentary – Buying the War

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  • Published: 1 November 2015*
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  • Words: 903 (approx)
  • Number of pages: 4 (approx)

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Buying the War, was it really the press that led the United States Government to believe that Saddam Hussein planned the 9-11 attacks? The story ‘Buying the War’ a documentary that aired in 2007 on Bill Moyers Journal, investigated how the media influenced not only the United States people but the government itself.
The documentary stated that high ranking officials somehow led the country to believe that there was a link between 9-11 and Saddam Hussein, using the press to lead the people into believing that everything that was being said was true, even though there was no cold hard evidence. For example, the media reported that Saddam Hussein actually had weapons of mass destruction underneath his home. This was later unfounded, as was a lot of the intel that was provided to the press and the government was seen to be a lie. The United States Government made claims that even though there was no evidence of weapons of mass destruction, their belief was that it just had not been found yet.
It seems that during the time after 9-11 and just before the Iraq war, patriotism was at an all time high, not only were the American people banding together but journalists themselves would wear the American flag during interviews and tv time. This helped strengthen the belief that Saddam Hussein was the monster that initiated 9-11 but also that he weapons of mass destruction in and around his compound.
The so called propaganda machine (marketing group) were what they called themselves, the White House Iraq group were people in the Government that were in the President’s inner circle. It has been reported that they were in charge of selling the war. It is also being stated that President Bush was their chief salesman, not only was he used as a salesman but other prominent officials were used to so called sell the war by notifying the people of the United States multiple times a day that Iraq was somehow linked to Al-Qaeda and that they were a threat to the United States. It is also stated that the government somehow leaked information to the press and the leak made public through The New York Times, and the Vice President confirmed the leak, to add fuel to the fire and continue to substantiate that Iraq was itself trying to buy nuclear weapons and was a danger to the United States. During this time it even became un-American to speak out against the Republican Government. Regardless of whether you were a part of the Democratic government, press or any other lay person, you were chastised either publicly or privately.
Scott Ritter who was a United Nations weapons inspector during the President Clinton era up until 1998 when he resigned was very upfront and factual as to why he did so. Speaking out Scott Ritter was telling the media that even though Iraq was not complying with the United States during the weapons inspection process, the United States was not complying either, they were interfering as well. The United States was seemingly not willing to be forceful in their attempt of such agreement and stand behind their inspectors and tell the Iraq government to comply with the fullest. If the United States did confront the Iraq government it should only be about disarmament of weapons and nothing else.
In October 2002, Warren P. Strobel of the Knight Ridder Newspapers stated that while there is support from high ranking officials towards the government going to war with Iraq, there are a number of people in his government that have reservations and are questioning whether they should go to war with Iraq or not. These people are saying that they have evidence to support the fact that government documents have been embellished show that Saddam Hussein is a threat and is linked to Al-Qaida. Embellished documents also show that the repercussions of war in the Middle East are minimal at best and that immediate military action is needed. Many people are coming forward in opposing views as to what the government is saying with the necessary hard evidence but because of the growing government stance and constant media play showing otherwise, these people are finding it very difficult to change the people of the United States minds.
In opposing views the Government is coming forward stating that they have hard evidence to support the fact that Saddam Hussein is in fact a danger the United States, that Iraq has allowed refuge to the Taliban leader and Osama bin Laden. Some officials are clearly staying quiet in the wake of this information due to retribution, they do agree that at some point in time Saddam Hussein will need to be dealt with yet they do not agree and have no knowledge that the information that has been stated by the Government to be correct.
In the end it is difficult to ascertain as to what the truth is and what is fiction. The media outpouring from the government shows that Saddam Hussein was a threat to the United States, and he was building weapons of mass destruction that would someday be used against us. Yet, in opposing views, yes there was a lot information that was factual but there was also a lot of information that was embellished and maybe even false information that was written in a way to make the situation worse than it actually was.

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