Information Warfare: Damned Video



March 25, 2012: Video is not only changing the way wars are fought but the way they are reported. For example, U.S. and Afghan troops recently tracked down and arrested a corrupt government official who had stolen a lot of cash and goods. The guy disappeared into the hills when he became aware that he was being investigated. The culprit was arrested but as soon as he got within earshot of journalists he began claiming that the American and Afghan troops had stolen gold from him and roughed up the women of his household. But the American Special Forces troops had worn small cameras on their helmets during the operation and gladly showed the videos to the journalists.

The hunted man (Nangyalai) had been the number two man in the Alingar district of Laghman Province. Alingar has a population of 85,000 and gets a share of foreign aid and money for running the district government. Nangyalai shut up once the camera videos were revealed, but in similar situations without videos, journalists would report this as yet another atrocity against Afghans.

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