Thursday, March 18, 2010

If things were going well in Afghanistan...

This wouldn't be happening. (Emphasis mine)

This refusal to allow reporting of certain combat actions is one of the odd experiences of being at war with the Canadian military and I have complained about it for years, as have others. But the gag order on embedded reporters in Kandahar continues.

The excuse the Canadian Forces gives is that Taliban guerrillas might learn from immediate media accounts whether their warheads had hit a target or not, which would allow them to recalibrate.

That's a legitimate concern even though most Taliban firing isn't that sophisticated. Rockets are simply hurriedly stuck in the ground at a rough angle and fired off, usually to no effect.

However, I accept the need for caution and so I am not offering up the exact time or location of these incidents. But there should clearly be limits to all this secrecy.

What really concerns me here is that a tally of rocket attacks on Canadians never does get out. Not even days or weeks later, after a safe passage of time.

It's simply as if they never happened, and such censorship distorts our own sense of the war and its changing tempo.

Something most of our closest allies are aware of and realize that, if such stringent censorship was ever exposed, it would come back to bite them.

This is interesting because Canadian officers have become extremely skilled in recent years in appearing open towards the media, which they are compared to most Harper government departments.

Still, neither of our principal allies, the U.S. and British, imposes the same OPSEC restrictions that Canada does. They are more open.

So, if they're hiding the obvious ineffective rocket attacks from the Canadian public... what else are they hiding?

And who ordered them to hide it?

More from M@ and POGGE.

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