Despite the best efforts of the Lincoln Group, hired by the administration to portray America and American democracy in a positive light, the real propaganda war in Iraq centers around Islam and appeals to Islamic duty and solidarity as shown here: “Softened tone of jihad propaganda conveys the same bitter message,” from the Telegraph:
The voice of Fallujah’s insurgency lives on. Once the loudest and most terrifying in Iraq, it now speaks through posters and flyers plastered on mosques and street corners. Yet, while the blood-curdling diktats baying for jihad have largely disappeared, there is nothing to say that the more subtle approach of the new messages is any less effective.
Documents translated by the US military and seen by the Sunday Telegraph reveal a patient, pleading tone, politely advising locals about their duties as jihadists, in the same manner as a local mayor might chide people about non-payment of council tax.
“To the residents of our respectful family,” reads one flyer. “Where is your support for the Mujahideen? God has spoken to his believers and told them to fight. It is your legal duty to do so.”
Another adopts the style of a frustrated headmistress rebuking recalcitrant pupils. “Today we will talk about the children,” it says. “We have asked many times for them not to be close to the coalition forces, but at the same time we have seen them accumulate around their vehicles. This has caused us to abort many of our operations.”
It goes on to accuse the Americans of enticing children with toys and sweets to create a human shield around them. “They just want to make your children as armour for themselves.”
Insurgent attacks that have killed civilians are blamed on the coalition forces, the Iraqi army – referred to as the “soldiers without God” – or Iranian agents.
“The Americans and the Iranian guards are working together to recruit mercenaries to damage the name of jihad and make ugly pictures of the Mujahideen,” reads one flyer…