Note: this section is incomplete – more to come soon.

In this section:
• Media coverage of war >
• Body counts & mortality estimates > (coming soon)
• Semantics of war > (coming soon)
• "Peaceful" nations > (coming soon)
• War/media resources > (coming soon)
• War fallacies > (coming soon)
• War-related horseshit > (coming soon)
• War-related toxic slime > (coming soon)
• War & fear hype > (coming soon)
• Antiwar campaigns > (coming soon)

Some "war hell" examples from our database:
• Iraq war disinformation >
• Early Iraqi death counts >
• Iraq "liberated" propaganda >
• War logic >
• Illegal war >
• Jack Straw's pre-war verdict on Iraq >
• Iraq memory hole >
• Media misrepresentation of Hans Blix >
• BBC admits mistakes in Iraq coverage >
• War criminals & lawsuits >
• Slanted Iraq war coverage >
More soon...

Media coverage of war


"Do you think the Iraq war can be won?"
(Gavin Esler, Newsnight, BBC2, 8/11/06)

Esler (a BBC news presenter) asked this question in a Newsnight studio debate, following Republican losses in mid-term US elections. It illustrates how the BBC often frames the invasion of Iraq. The framing implies that the "success" (or failure) of the Iraq war remains to be decided.

An alternative question (eg "can the killing be stopped?") would frame the issue in a way that implies the Iraq invasion is already known to be a catastrophe.

Esler provided another good example of framing in August 2004, when UK politician Adam Price launched a campaign to impeach Tony Blair for misleading the country over Iraq ( In a BBC Newsnight interview with Price, presenter Esler seemed determined to dismiss the evidence against Blair as "political differences":

"...You're trying to criminalise political differences – we've gone over this endlessly on the programme... we know the political differences." [Esler on Newsnight, 25/8/04]

The evidence against Blair remains to be judged by a genuinely independent inquiry (not one conducted by sympathetic establishment figures appointed by Blair). Esler's framing of this evidence as "political differences" excludes the possibility that Blair may be found guilty based on evidence.


BBC1's coverage of Donald Rumsfeld's resignation (BBC1 10 O'Clock news) stated that Rumsfeld was:

"Hailed as a visionary"

It didn't say by whom. This is an example of a type of semantic distortion known as "simple deletion". The identity of the person/group expressing the viewpoint is deleted/excluded. We're left with the default impression that the opinion is somehow a consensual, official or authoritative judgement, when it might just be an opinion expressed by one of Rumsfeld's friends (or, more likely, from a press release put out by Rumsfeld's PR team). For more on simple deletions, see: Types of semantic propaganda.

Note: this section is incomplete – more to come soon.