Monday, November 30, 2009

More embedded goodness

"Canada's Operation Hydra winning Afghan villagers over." This entire report is based on one military perspective, a tale of two villages secured during the aforementioned Operation Hydra which occurred on November 15th. News of it reaches the media today. Here's a taste, from its incredible conclusion:
The ANA, through its actions, is succeeding at winning over the confidence of the people.

“They haven't seen that (security) before, which is why they relied on and accepted the Taliban to come in and say, 'We will protect the village, nobody will steal your sheep and nobody will take your sons away. Nobody else is providing you the security, there's nobody else here, nobody cares about your future,’” says Walsh.

“Now there's an alternative.” (emphasis added)
Now don't get me wrong here, this is not to denigrate the efforts of the military or the hopes that people in Afghanistan can live conflict free...but the sole-sourcing here by the reporter to the military alone stands out, it has the impact of a report that's a little too much on the storybook ending side. The report is of an entirely successful exercise, two villages rid of the Taliban simply by the Canadians sweeping in, a battlefield summit seems to be all it takes to confirm it all.

It all reads like a press release, a little too much on the sunny side and leaves a critical reader a little suspect. Again, as the torture allegations and spin efforts occupy discussion in Ottawa, the contrast is jarring.