Wednesday, August 16, 2006


T.F. Boggs
Saturday, January 07, 2006

I remember right before I was deployed in 2003
watching the news about six soldiers who were
lost in the desert during the initial push
through Iraq. This was two days before I left
the states for Iraq myself.

When I first arrived my unit went to a base
in Kuwait, where, the first morning at breakfast,
I sat across from a few tired looking soldiers.
Somehow small talk ensued and I came to find out
these were the very soldiers that had just been
lost alone in the desert for six days and were
the center of the news back home. As I told the
soldiers that I had just come from the states
where I watched their saga unfold on the nightly
news they were astounded. They looked at me with
wide eyes and laughed.

When I returned home at the end of my first
deployment I remember being disgusted at how the
war was portrayed in the media. Over time I began
to question myself and my own experiences in Iraq.
Had things really happened the way I thought they
did, or did they happen the way the media portrayed
them on the nightly news and in the papers? I began
to feel kind of scared about the possibility of
having to go back for another tour in Iraq.

Now that I am working and “out and about” I realize
that all my fears and apprehensions were mostly
unfounded. News “reality” is a far cry from actual
reality. On the news there is blood and guts, fire
and destruction, and crying and anger. In Iraq there
is normal life with sporadic bombings and unrest.

I can kind of compare it to the attention that is
paid to Israel and the Palestinians by the MSM.
Israel is about a third the size of Ohio yet there
are more reports coming out of there every day to
fill an entire newscast. The same is true with Iraq.
If the MSM weren’t able to report the body count
everyday I don’t know what they would cover. The two
things you can count on being in the news everyday is
the weather and the most recent body count of dead soldiers.

Maybe it is just the light that soldiers tend to make
of war time events but the things that are covered on
the news, (IED’s, car bombs, small arms fire and the
likes) are common occurrences here and are paid no more
attention to then what movie we want to watch when get
back to base. It is funny to go through an event that
makes headlines back home but barely warrants a second
thought here. Maybe if newscasters and journalists actually
had some type of experience with what they report on then
they wouldn’t be so quick to blow out of proportion common
everyday occurrences.


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