TCS Daily

Could You Comment...?

By Arnold Kling - March 31, 2003 12:00 AM

People listening to our military spokespersons as they are grilled by reporters from the BBC, CBS News, The New Yorker, etc., may be getting discouraged. But just imagine what the reporters would be asking the Iraqi military if they were holding a press conference.

A List of Possible Questions

Sir, could you comment on the situation in the skies? Why aren't any Iraqi planes flying? Why is the anti-aircraft fire getting weaker?

In the first Gulf War, Iraq shot down over twenty coalition aircraft. What has gone wrong this time?

Why are Iraqi generals sending troops in ordinary buses and trucks to attack heavily-armed tanks?

I'd like to follow up on the last question. What do you have to say to the relatives of the Iraqi servicemen who die in these suicidal attacks?

Your strategy of showing American prisoners and dead on TV, in order to destroy their will to fight does not seem to be working. Can you comment on reports suggesting that this has only made the American people angrier?

The government's best hope for surviving this war is pressure from world opinion to stop the fighting. Can you explain how shooting civilians trying to flee Basra helps to mobilize world public opinion on our behalf?

You have suggested that just as America eventually gave up in Vietnam, they will give up here. But Vietnam was supported and reinforced by China and the Soviet Union. Where will you get reinforcements to replace your losses in men and munitions?

There is a lot of second-guessing going on with people saying that the Iraqi government does not have any strategy, other than to cause chaos and suffering among the people. Do you have any sort of plan at all that would offer hope that the government will remain in power?

You say that you will defeat the Americans in street fighting in Baghdad. But so far, they have not come into the city. What if they just stay where they are and keep pounding your forces from long range using bombs and artillery? How will you defeat them in that case?

How would you describe morale among the troops? We keep hearing of officers having to threaten soldiers and their families in order to get them to fight. Can you comment on that?

The press is doing a good job of asking tough questions to America's civilian and military leaders. Even though there is no comparable public questioning taking place in Iraq, staging an imaginary press conference with the Iraqi military might prove enlightening.

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