Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Why Is the Media Still Calling It A Surge?

Opening paragraphs of article in Washington Post:

The Pentagon announced yesterday that 35,000 soldiers in 10 Army combat brigades will begin deploying to Iraq in August as replacements, making it possible to sustain the increase of U.S. troops there until at least the end of this year.

U.S. commanders in Iraq are increasingly convinced that heightened troop levels, announced by President Bush in January, will need to last into the spring of 2008. The military has said it would assess in September how well its counterinsurgency strategy, intended to pacify Baghdad and other parts of Iraq, is working.

Definition of surge from online version of Merriam-Webster dictionary:

Inflected Form(s):
surged; surg·ing
1 : to rise and fall actively : toss 2 : to rise and move in waves or billows : swell 3 : to slip around a windlass, capstan, or bitts — used especially of a rope 4 : to rise suddenly to an excessive or abnormal value 5 : to move with a surge or in surges transitive verb : to let go or slacken gradually (as a rope)

Something that takes months to accomplish and is going to last for months is not a "surge" in the most accepted definition of the word. What is really happening is that the Bush Administration is escalating the number of troops in Iraq in hopes of holding things together until the next president is sworn in. Then, Bush can go down to Crawford, play at being a cowboy, and write his memoirs.

We know why the Bushies want to call it a surge. To call it an escalation, when the American public is increasingly soured on Bubble-Boy's foreign adventure, would be political suicide, but why is the media using the same term? Just because the Bush Administration wants to call this troop increase something that it's not doesn't mean that the media has to play along with it.

You can read the whole Post article by clicking on the link in this entry's title.

No comments: