Supplemental Point to My Latest Column

April 12, 2005

I just received an interesting (and informative) e-mail from Merv at, telling me that while the media’s slanted reporting on Iraq may well be biased, it’s also in part due to its ignorance of war and insurgency movements, etc. Here’s Merv’s e-mail:

There are very few reporters who understand the concept of a militarily significant attack. To be militarily significant, the attack must effect the opponents ability to function as a military unit. By that definition, the enemy in Iraq has never had a militarily significant attack. The recent attack at Abu Ghraib and one reported in my blog this evening of a Marine base, were both failed attacks by any reasonable measure. Yet in both cases, the Washington Post reported the stories as if the attack itself was significant. In fact the only significance to either attack was that the enemy further attrited his own forces while failing to achieve his objectives, but you will not find this analysis in the stories. It may be bias, but it is also ignorance. They just do not comprehend warfare in general and insurgent warfare in particular. You can see my comments on the latest Post story at

Please check out Merv’s post on this subject here.