by James F. Tracy
September 01, 2014
In the wake of World War I, erstwhile propagandist and political scientist
Harold Lasswell famously defined propaganda as,
"the management of collective attitudes" and
the "control over opinion" through "the manipulation of significant
The extent to which this tradition is
enthusiastically upheld in the West and the United States in particular is
The American public is consistently propagandized by its government and
corporate news media on the most vital of contemporary issues and events.
Deception on such a scale would be of little consequence if the US were not
the most powerful economic and military force on earth.
[Image Credit: Vice News]
A case in point is the hysteria Western news media are attempting to create
concerning the threat posed by the mercenary-terrorist army now being
promoted as the
Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria, or "ISIS."
As was the case with the US intelligence asset and bogey publicized as "Al
Qaeda," and Al Qaeda's Syrian adjunct, "Al Nusra," such entities are -
apparently by design - inadequately investigated and defined by major news
Absent meaningful historical context they
usefully serve as another raison d'ểtre for America's terminal "War on
A seemingly obvious feature of such terrorist forces left unexamined by
corporate media is that they are observably comprised of the same or
comparable personnel unleashed elsewhere
throughout the Middle East as part
of a strategy proposed during the
George W. Bush administration in 2007.
With the above observations in mind, ISIS is well-financed, militarily
proficient, and equipped with modern vehicles and weaponry.
It also exhibits an uncanny degree of media
savvy in terms of propagating its message in professional-looking videos and
on platforms such as YouTube and Twitter.
"Western intelligence services," the New
York Times reports, claim to be "worried about their extraordinary
command of seemingly less lethal weapons: state-of-the-art videos,
ground images shot from drones, and multilingual Twitter messages."
Along these lines, ISIS even received a largely
sympathetic portrayal in a five-part series produced and aired by the
Rupert Murdoch-backed Vice News.
Indeed, Vice News' "The Spread of the Caliphate"
is reminiscent of the public relations-style reportage produced via the
"embedding" of corporate news media personnel with US and allied forces
during the 2003 conquest of Iraq.
The overt support of ISIS, combined with the fact that it is battling the
same Syrian government
the Obama administration overtly sought to wage war
against just one year ago, strongly suggest the organization's sponsorship
by Western intelligence and military interests.
ISIS's curious features are readily apparent to non-Western news outlets and
For example, Iran's PressTV recently asked its
"Why does the ISIL have such easy access to
Twitter, Youtube and other social media to propagate its ideologies?"
The answer choices are,
"1) Because the ISIL has very capable
technicians who can best use social media, or 2) Because the US and
Britain have provided the ISIL with unrestricted social media platform[s]."
Note that the first choice is the overarching
assumption of Western media outlets.
Yet perhaps unsurprisingly, 90 percent
of PressTV readers selected choice two. No such queries are so much as alluded to by major corporate media, all of
which are united in the notion that ISIS is an essentially indigenous
Yet as coverage of
the events of September 11,
2001 and subsequent state-sponsored terrorism indicates, such media are
essentially a component of the national security state, their reports and
broadcast scripts all but overtly written by intelligence and military
In the wake of 9/11 US news media seldom asked about the origins of Al Qaeda
- particularly how it was a product of US intelligence agencies.
With the history of Al Qaeda omitted, the Bush
administration was permitted to wage war on Afghanistan almost immediately
following those staged attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon.
Yet as is much the case with today's manufactured ISIS phenomenon, that
history was readily available, and its careful public examination might have
implicated the United States intelligence community in the 9/11 attacks.
"During the Cold War, but also in its
aftermath," Michel Chossudovsky observes, the CIA - using Pakistan's military
intelligence apparatus as a "go between" - played a key role in training
the Mujhadeen. In turn, the CIA-sponsored guerrilla training was
integrated with the teachings of Islam.
Both the Clinton and Bush administrations
have consistently supported the "Militant Islamic Base", including Osama
bin Laden's Al Qaeda, as part of their foreign policy agenda.
The links between Osama bin Laden and the
Clinton administration in Bosnia and Kosovo are well documented by
As the United States and world approach the
thirteenth anniversary of the most momentous false flag in modern history,
the American public would be well-served to remind itself that ISIS is the
new Al Qaeda - in other words, the new pretext that will in all likelihood
be used by to take
police state measures at home and
military aggression abroad to new, perhaps unprecedented, levels.
With the above in mind, it is telling that one of the US government's
greatest fears isn't ISIS at all.
"The FBI's most recent threat assessment for
domestic terrorism makes no reference to Islamist terror threats," the
Washington Free Beacon reports, "despite last year's Boston Marathon
bombing and the 2009 Fort Hood shooting - both carried out by radical
Instead, the nation's foremost law enforcement
agency is preoccupied with what it deems "domestic extremism" exhibited by
its own subjects.
A primary manifestation of such "extremism" is
possessing the curiosity to discern and seek out truths and information
amidst the barrage of manipulated symbols the government and
corporate-controlled media use to undermine a potentially informed public.
 Harold Lasswell, Propaganda Technique in
the World War, Cambridge MA: MIT Press, 1927/1971.
 Seymour Hersh, "The
Redirection: Is the Administration’s New Policy Benefitting Our Enemies
in the War on Terrorism?" New Yorker, March 5, 2007; Tony Cartalucci,
Ravaging Syria Created by US in 2007," Land Destroyer Report, May
 Scott Shane and Ben Hubbard, "ISIS
Displaying a Deft Command of Varied Media," New York Times, August
 Joe Bercovici, "Thanks
to Rupert Murdoch, Vice is Worth $1.4 Billion. Could it be in Play Soon?"
Forbes, August 19, 2014; Medyan Dairieh, "The
Spread of the Caliphate: The Islamic State," Vice News, August 13,
 PressTV Poll,
http://presstv.ir, retrieved on August 30, 2014.
 Michel Chossudovsky, America’s "War on
Terrorism" Second Edition, Montreal CA: Global Research, 2005, 4.
 Bill Gertz, "FBI
National Domestic Threat Assessment Omits Islamist Terrorism,"
Washington Free Beacon, August 29, 2014.