Pentagon is preparing a PR war

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Pentagon is preparing a PR war

Postby jingofever » Tue Oct 31, 2006 5:26 am

<!--EZCODE AUTOLINK START--><a href="http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/front/4297464.html">www.chron.com/disp/story....97464.html</a><!--EZCODE AUTOLINK END--><br><br>"""<br> By LOLITA C. BALDOR<br>Associated Press<br><br>WASHINGTON — The Pentagon is buttressing its public relations staff and starting an operation akin to a political campaign war room as Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld faces intensifying criticism over the Iraq war.<br><br>In a memo obtained by the Associated Press, Dorrance Smith, assistant secretary of defense for public affairs, said new teams of people will "develop messages" for the 24-hour news cycle and "correct the record."<br><br>The memo describes an operation modeled after a political campaign — such as that made famous by Bill Clinton's successful 1992 presidential race — calling for a "Rapid Response" section for quickly answering opponents' assertions.<br><br>Another branch would coordinate "surrogates." In political campaigns, surrogates are usually high-level politicians or key interest groups who speak or travel on behalf of a candidate or an issue.<br><br>The plan would focus more resources on so-called new media, such as the Internet and Weblogs. It would also include new workers to book civilian and military guests on television and radio shows.<br><br>Pentagon press secretary Eric Ruff did not provide the exact number of people to be hired, or the costs.<br><br>Rumsfeld has complained bitterly that the press focuses too much attention on bad news coming out of Iraq, and not enough on progress being made there. As an example, during a trip to Nevada earlier this year, he said he was deeply troubled by the success of terrorist groups in "manipulating the media" to influence Westerners.<br><br>"That's the thing that keeps me up at night," he said during a question-and-answer session at a naval base.<br><br>The Pentagon changes, in the works for months, come as voters prepare to go to the polls next week with the war in Iraq as a key issue. Polls suggest that the Republicans could lose their majority in the House, and perhaps the Senate, too.<br><br>The new public relations plan began to take concrete shape on Friday as new construction began in the E-Ring, the Pentagon's outermost corridor, to accommodate new hires.<br><br>Ruff said today that the reorganization, spearheaded by Smith, will help the department "set the record straight" and provide accurate, timely information.<br><br>He denied that the effort was set up to respond to the eroding public support for the war, or that it was aimed at helping in next week's elections. He also said he would not call it an "information operations" program, which generally refers to a propaganda-type campaign.<br><br>Ruff said the effort grew out of Rumsfeld's criticism of the department's communications capabilities, which the secretary compared unfavorably to how quickly and effectively terrorists can get their message out.<br><br>"If I were grading I would say we probably deserve a 'D' or a 'D-plus' as a country as to how well we're doing in the battle of ideas that's taking place in the world today," Rumsfeld said during a visit to the Army War College in March. "I'm not going to suggest that it's easy, but we have not found the formula as a country" for countering the extremists' message.<br><br>"We're trying to do better than a D-plus," said Ruff.<br>""" <p></p><i></i>
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Re: Pentagon is preparing a PR war

Postby Hugh Manatee Wins » Tue Oct 31, 2006 5:33 am

Nauseating. Just sickening.<br><br>I'm looking at a 1966 photo book by Felix Greene of US soldiers torturing Vietnamese villagers and children with skin napalmed off.<br><br>It's the same damn war with a new name and...PR.<br><br> <p></p><i></i>
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Re: Pentagon is preparing a PR war

Postby professorpan » Tue Oct 31, 2006 1:00 pm

<!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>It's the same damn war with a new name and...PR.<hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--><br><br>Yep. My mind keeps returning to P.K. Dick's idea that we're stuck in an illusory time loop, doomed to repeat the rise and fall of the Roman Empire. <p></p><i></i>
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Re: Pentagon is preparing a PR war

Postby Byrne » Tue Oct 31, 2006 1:06 pm

<!--EZCODE BOLD START--><strong>Pentagon Reveals "News Correction Unit"...the unit would monitor media such as weblogs</strong><!--EZCODE BOLD END--><br><br>Link: <!--EZCODE AUTOLINK START--><a href="http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/6100906.stm">news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/6100906.stm</a><!--EZCODE AUTOLINK END--><br><br>The US defence department has set up a new unit to better promote its message across 24-hour rolling news outlets, and particularly on the internet. <br>The Pentagon said the move would boost its ability to counter "inaccurate" news stories and exploit new media. Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said earlier this year the US was losing the propaganda war to its enemies. On Monday, Vice-President Dick Cheney said insurgents had increased attacks in Iraq to sway the US mid-term polls. <br>The Bush administration does not believe the true picture of events in Iraq has been made public, the BBC's Justin Webb in Washington says. The administration is particularly concerned that insurgents in areas such as Iraq have been able to use the web to disseminate their message and give the impression they are more powerful than the US, our correspondent says.<br> <br>'Correcting messages' <br>The newly-established unit would use "new media" channels to push its message and "set the record straight", Pentagon press secretary Eric Ruff said. <br><br>"We're looking at being quicker to respond to breaking news," he said. "Being quicker to respond, frankly, to inaccurate statements." A Pentagon memo seen by the Associated Press news agency said the new unit would "develop messages" for the 24-hour news cycle and aim to "correct the record". The unit would reportedly monitor media such as weblogs and would also employ "surrogates", or top politicians or lobbyists who could be interviewed on TV and radio shows. <br>Mr Russ said the move to set up the unit had not been prompted either by the eroding public support in the US for the Iraq war or the US mid-term elections next week. <br>'War of ideas' Mr Rumsfeld said earlier this year that he was concerned by the success of US enemies in "manipulating the media". "That's the thing that keeps me up at night," Mr Rumsfeld said. On Monday, US Vice President Dick Cheney also made reference to the use of media, suggesting insurgents had increased their attacks and were checking the internet to keep track of American public opinion. <br>"It's my belief that they're very sensitive of the fact that we've got an election scheduled and they can get on the websites like anybody else," Mr Cheney told Fox News. <br>"There isn't anything that's on the internet that's not accessible to them. They're on it all the time. They're very sophisticated users of it." <br><br>Mr Cheney's comments came as American forces suffered one of the highest death tolls in October - more than 100 troops killed - since the war began in 2003. President Bush has said recently that terror groups were trying to influence public opinion in the US, describing their efforts as the "war of ideas". <br><!--EZCODE HR START--><hr /><!--EZCODE HR END--><br><!--EZCODE QUOTE START--><blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>suggesting insurgents had increased their attacks and were checking the internet to keep track of American public opinion<hr></blockquote><!--EZCODE QUOTE END--><br><br>I don't believe that the majority of people resisting the US military in Iraq & Afghanistan are ardent internet/web-blog users '<!--EZCODE ITALIC START--><em>checking up on American public opinion'</em><!--EZCODE ITALIC END-->. The resistors are people fighting against the invavders in their homeland.<br><br>Now it appears that anyone expressing dissent on-line as to US government policies is now an insurgent.<br><br>We know that the Pentagon (or their sub-contractors - Rendon etc.) have been monitoring media/webspace/blogs etc. before, but the policy now seems to have been 'turned up' a bit, with this announcement.<br><br> <p></p><i></i>
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