On her show Saturday, MSNBC host Joy Reid reminded those of us who cover the White House and other political news that we need to recall the lessons of the past.
Showing footage from the 1991 Desert Storm invasion of Iraq, Reid noted:
“For 43 days in early 1991, the United States’ first war in the Persian Gulf was the original reality TV. Day after day, millions tuned in for the Operation Desert Storm show on TV as U.S. military bombardments and Iraq scud missile attacks were brought live into our living rooms thanks to CNN, the only 24 hours game in.”
Some of us are indeed old enough to recall watching Bernard Shaw and the other CNN hosts as they showed harrowing footage from the battlefields of Iraq. War in real-time was still very new to us, and we were riveted by what we saw.
Reid then offered us a lesson we should have learned from the second Gulf War, which continues to haunt us 14 years later:
“Years later when the U.S. once again waded into a conflict in the Middle East, the Iraq war became the shiny toy the news media just could not resist, thanks to improved broadcast technology and unprecedented access.
“That war that cost more than $2 trillion and hundreds and thousands of lives was based on a weapons of mass destruction claim that was completely and utterly false. It’s a lesson that the media would be wise to remember this week as we turn our focus from the very real scandal of Donald Trump’s Russia ties to the shiny object of Trump’s assault.”
How very true. The attack on Syria is now in the past. We need to move on and focus on what truly matters: How Donald Trump was elected in the first place and to whom he owes his deepest loyalties. If that turns out to be Vladimir Putin, we must remove Trump from office and not stop until we have flushed out every last traitor who rode in on his coattails.
This article was originally published by the same author at LiberalAmerica.org