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The Responsible American Media and Iran

If anyone doubts that the the Bush Administration doesn’t intend to go to war in Iraq, a viewing of MSNBC’s Scarborough Country might change your mind. On this evening’s program, Joe and his cast of neo-conservatives laid out the case for going to war with Iran–entitely relying on specious claims that Iran would make a nuclear attack on the United States. Did they rely on rational argument and analysis? No–the same media that let the Bush Administration scare the United States into war with Iraq, made its case by repeatedly showing a model of a hypothetical nuclear attack on New York City, complete with a map showing the blast radius of a hypothetical attack. To make sure that the idea scared as many viewers as possible, the video often cut to totally unnecessary shots of other American cities, including LA, Seattle and Chicago.
A repeated viewing of a blast radius of a nuclear attack! Monica Crowley, a political analyst whose claim to fame is an absurd biography of Richard Nixon and a series of failed MSNBC shows, also suggested that Iran could have nuclear weapons today. That seems fair and responsible, other than being flatly untrue:

the most recent U.S. National Intelligence Estimate predicated that if Iran did try to develop nuclear weapons, it couldn’t do so for at least 10 years.

Where can the public turn for thoughtful analysis when hyperbole is easier? Why, just as before the Gulf War, are critics of the Bush Iran policy, not getting attention by the media? Can we really be scared into war again?

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Don Pogreba

Don Pogreba is an eighteen-year teacher of English, former debate coach, and loyal, if often sad, fan of the San Diego Padres and Portland Timbers. He spends far too many hours of his life working at school and on his small business, Big Sky Debate.
His work has appeared in Politico and Rewire.
In the past few years, travel has become a priority, whether it's a road trip to some little town in Montana or a museum of culture in Ísafjörður, Iceland.

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