Imagine Britain had been invaded and occupied by armed forces from another region of the world with China,
for example, as a significant ‘partner’ in the ‘coalition’.
Imagine tens of thousands of Britons had been killed, and millions had fled as refugees.
This is how the Chinese state broadcaster might report the invasion ten years hence:
‘It’s ten years this week since Chinese forces first became involved in Britain,
and more than five years since they assumed responsibility for south-east England.
So what’s been achieved in that time?’
These were the actual words that presenter Fiona Bruce used on the flagship BBC News at Ten:
‘It’s ten years this week since British forces first became involved in Afghanistan,
and more than five years since they assumed responsibility for Helmand province.
So what’s been achieved in that time?’ (BBC One, October 4, 2011, italics added)
This is BBC ‘impartiality’ in action.
These words were a prelude to a piece by Paul Wood, the BBC’s Afghanistan correspondent,
that was a model of Pravda-style propaganda which we will examine further in Part 2.
Meanwhile, in a shameful editorial,
the Guardian burnished its credentials as a hand-wringing liberal supporter of the war.
Readers were told that the war that had been
and that ‘we’ had then stayed in the country
‘through all the twists and turns imposed by events’,
struggling with ‘the incoherence of our own changing policies,
for reasons which have become less and less understandable.’
The paper sighed that ‘an anniversary of this kind has a sobering effect’
in that ‘we hugely overestimated the capacity of our military, diplomatic and intelligence establishments to change other societies.’
This ‘hubris was most evident in the United States, but it was not absent in Britain.’
‘The trouble’, claimed the editorial, ‘was that, once in that obscure corner, whether Iraq or Afghanistan’,
coalition forces ‘were confronted by shrewd and ruthless opponents.’
invaders do tend to be resisted by those ‘shrewd and ruthless’ people in ‘obscure corners’
whose land is being occupied, and whose lives, livelihoods and resources are at risk.