Information Warfare: March 1, 2003


While the guns and bombs are not hitting Iraq yet, American Information War efforts have been going on for several months. Already, over eight million leaflets have been dropped on southern Iraq. These carry various messages, including warnings to anti-aircraft crews that they will be bombed if they fire on American warplanes, and to ground troops that they can escape death in the coming war by promptly surrendering. Meanwhile, U.S. Air Force Commando Solo aircraft, which carry radio and TV broadcasting equipment, have been sending out programs that sound like the official Iraqi government ones, but with a better selection of Arabic music and a subtly anti-Saddam message in their news programming. If a war commences, the official radio broadcasting equipment will be bombed into silence and Commando Solo will take over the frequencies used by those government stations. The programming for these radio broadcasts is much improved over what was used in 1991. Iraqi exiles, especially those with media experience, are now used to prepare programming. The Information War experience in Afghanistan also showed how important it was to make the broadcasts entertaining, otherwise no one will bother to listen to any other message you are trying to get across. The Iraqi broadcasts play on the general dissatisfaction with Saddam. 


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