You know, I’m not so sure that Rupert Murdoch and his band of flying howler monkeys over at FUX News aren’t about to bite off more than they can chew. Watching their prime time lineup these days is like watching a live feed from R/T.
And why not? After all, Traitor tot spent 5 years of slobbering all over Putin’s shoes, taking his fatuous denials over his own intelligence assessments. And now you’ve got the likes of Fucker Carlson and Moscow Rose Ingraham trashing Biden, and not only rooting for Putin to invade Ukraine, but justifying it for him. And that could come back to kill them.
In order for my main argument to make sense, I must now briefly digress. I’m old enough to remember The Nam, and plenty old enough to remember the news coverage. Vietnam was an anomaly because it had pretty much unfettered news coverage on the ground. As a result, it became a nightly news feature to see dead civilians, explosions and gunfire, wounded Marines being carried to helicopters on stretchers, and body bags being lugged out of the jungle. This graphic portrayal of war led to massive demonstrations against the war that almost tore the country apart.
The US government learned that lesson, and so did the military. In every future conflict the US was involved in, news media access, especially television was strictly controlled by the military press corps. All trips to the front were basically tourist junkets run by the military, with reporters seeing only what they were allowed to see. Shit, Bush Lite even banned news media coverage of the dignified transfer of remains ceremony at Dover AFB when the US losses started climbing.
Here’s why this is so important. In a matter of days, if not hours, Putin is going to give the signal, and a widespread invasion of Ukraine will take place. And it will be brutal. The Ukraine army will fight back. See, here’s the thing, bombs, tank shells, and missiles don’t discriminate. They can be aimed at specific targets, but then they land, they explode, sending shrapnel and chunks of whatever they blew up all over the place. And Putin isn’t going to give a shit about civilians, hell terror is part of the point!
And for the first time since Vietnam, Americans are going to see real war on their television sets, only now with 24/7 cable news. Because the US government has already made it crystal clear that there will be no US boots on the ground in Ukraine. Which means that they can’t control where the news media crews go in Ukraine, nor what they film. And of course they can’t censor what the news networks show on their programs either.
And when those images start hitting the global airwaves, Putin will immediate become the most worldwide reviled man since Idi Amin Dada. The longer it goes on, the worse the condemnation will get, and the worse it gets, the farther the sanctions will spread for countries and entities that support Putin and Russia.
And for the last 5 years, who has been Putin’s biggest glee club in the US? FUX News of course, along with Glorious Bleater, and their kittle cadre of kamerades. Maybe FUX will be able to shield their own oh so sensitive viewers from too much of the reality on the ground, but that won’t matter. Because everybody else will be seeing it, more than they want. And the legitimate news media, sick of being lumped together with that motley crew, will gleefully play segments of Carlson and Ingraham extolling the virtues of Putin.
And that’s when the consumer boycotts of FUX advertisers will start en masse. The carnage we saw in Iraq, and Afghanistan, and even Syria was easy for most conservatives to explain away. Those were in far flung places and involved mostly Muslims. These are going to be white, mostly Christian victims in mostly modern western style cities having their own buildings collapse on top of them. And don’t forget the Americans who have chosen to stay that will die.
Americans are going to want to do something, and a consumer boycott against a pro Putin propaganda network is something anybody can do. And properly managed, a consumer boycott can be devastatingly effective. And don’t just take my word for it, ask Rush, once you get to the seance.
Rush Limbaugh was the undisputed king of conservative radio, and untouchable. His advertising rates were the gold standard for radio revenue flow. His flagship network had him signed up with the top major market radio stations in the country. And then Limbaugh called a college law student, Sandra Flook a slut for testifying that she needed birth control for an underlying medical condition, and his world imploded.
The Flush Rush movement sprang up and thrived. Volunteers nationwide suffered the sins of the damned listening to Limbaugh’s filth, to catalog his sponsors and post them on the website. And then the deluge of letters, phone calls, texts, e-mails, and tweets started coming in to sponsors. Four years later, his own flagship network debated dumping him because so many prime market stations had dumped him. A 3 minute commercial break consisted of 1.5 minutes end-of-days rations and gold scams, and 1.5 minutes of dead air. Public service announcements wouldn’t even let Limbaugh air them. His final contract was 1/3 lower than his previous one.
- Now, maybe I’m full of shit, and none of this will happen, but I don’t think so. You have to be old enough to remember Vietnam to know what’s coming soon to a tv screen near you. And when it does, people are going to be repulsed and want a scapegoat. And who better than FUX, Putins voluntary US subsidiary? Don’t touch that dial.
Not all weapons are designed, at least directly to kill and the same is true of military aid. On a battlefield in a firefight, especially against superior numbers the most important weapon is often a radio and hopefully someone who knows their shit as a FAC – Forward Air Controller. In the Corps, whenever possible a Marine who is also a Naval Aviator is assigned to units as a FAC. For those who don’t know after graduation from OCS all Marines regardless of their eventual M.O.S. (job) go through The Basic School. Six months of hard-core trade school in how to lead/command an infantry platoon and yes, calling in air support is part of that which good officers make sure they teach to the Marines in their platoons. Butt that part about an actual Naval Aviator being down there living and fighting with the grunts means, as the saying goes that he’ll know better than any other aviator in the world “what it means to be a grunt who could use a little air support.”
I said all that to establish how important communications from a battlefield are. But communications is more than calling in air strikes. It’s also about keeping those up the chain up-to-date on the local picture so they can understand the overall situation. Modern communications includes capabilities that we could only dream of back in my day. Devices tough enough to handle being banged around on a battlefield that can link up with a satelite aren’t standard issue at the platoon level (I think) but they are out there and in addition to sound they also now can transmit VIDEO!
I hope, and if I was a religious person would pray that part of the military assistance has included providing satphones with video capability to Ukrainian troops. And also commercial versions to select civilians. Russia has taken so much time telegraphing its punch that there’s been time to get formal resistance units set up – with supplies and equipment. To the point of your article Putin will surely have special ops people try to seize news outlets and communications facilities to control what comes out of Ukraine. What he can’t do is stop satellite transmissions from units no bigger than a briefcase, or in some cases even smaller. Once that signal bounces off a satellite there’s not a damned thing Putin can do to stop the images from being seen around the world. Intellectually he knows that but he’s not thinking clearly and has deluded himself into believing that most Ukrainians will actually welcome a return to Russian control of their country. Also that those “few” (in his mind) that don’t will be cowed into submission. The reality is that by a large margin Ukrainians hate Putin and hate Russia.
So again I hope that once Putin’s goons shut down the internet in Ukraine that we have prepared and have a network of field capable satellite transmitters distributed far and wide so that the very images you talked about wind up being seen worldwide.
Muh as I hope and wish that your future vision will turn out to be true, and notwithstanding I have no doubt there will be MANY Russan troop William–Calley moments, my skepticism is two-fold:
1) Walter Cronkite. We don’t have one, so “alternative” facts can just keep coming out.
2) The Trupoids have proven themselves either or both INFINITELY stupid or INFINITELY gullible.
I fear that no matter WHAT they see on the internet or TV, Herr Carlson can ALWAYS spin it such that Putin is good, and Ukraine had it coming. Fux is really good at lying, and it’s watchers are REALLY good at buying everything FUX will tell them.
I wish Tom Lehrer were right cuz I WOULD look for you when the war is over, an hour and a half from now.
This one is going to be a LOT longer!