Sunday, June 13, 2010

Weapons of Mass Deception

We always debate about freedom of speech in general & freedom of press in particular. A staunch supporter of this freedom myself, I think that we have seen that this blind faith in the media has not always given us the desired results.

A media that needs to be an independent source of information & criticism has unfortunately been converted into yet another business unit which has resulted in lack of objectivity in a profession which needs to have objectivity as its core value. But can this medium be trusted now?

Personally, I no more trust it, especially after being cheated on several occasions. With time as the number of channels increase the quality of the information has decreased, like some inversely related math equation. It has become a sort of rat race for them to pour in news or is data a better term? From the standpoint of Pakistan we are well accustomed to seeing through the news (not that it somehow helped our situation in any manner). Our political rollercoaster which has somehow been able to affect every other sphere of life & made it equally unstable has made our nerves a bit too hard. We like any other viewer around the globe take in the preset information but our opinion poll is not based on it. This point won’t correspond to any poll results that are shown to represent us because most of the time they are ghost polls & we are too busy now to even challenge them.

By this time, you might be thinking what prompted me to write this post. Well as far as the prompting point is concerned I recently watched Control Room( Weapons of Mass Deception( , back to back. And the main point that I want to make here is that what is the result of all this debate?  Pros & Cons. Real Journalism v/s Not so real journalism (corporatocracy backed journalism). Both these documentaries that I just mentioned had the “Iraq war” as their core subject. All the lies that were sold & we bought them hungrily. WMD, Operation Iraq Liberation (abbreviated as OIL ironically), the behind the scenes ugly side of corporate culture etc etc. In all this the effects somehow become just a footnote. They are not given the attention or the space they deserve. They are referred as part of the long list of consequences not as a major fallout.

Ok, finally the truth has been unveiled; there was no greater good for which people were fighting, the whole dam world supporting the champions of freedom & similar theories. So what did this discovery do for those footnotes? What changed for them? How were they compensated? Any answers? I fail to find one.

Nothing in this world can compensate for the physical & emotional loss these people suffered; the loss of their loved ones, homes, cultures, identities; nothing can bring them back to normalcy. This damage is irreversible, but the worse part of it is that no one seems to be interested in learning some lessons & to make sure that this is not repeated. All we tend to do is bring out more analysis for further fruitless debates. All that won’t make even the tiniest of the difference.

The world is hell bent on ending extremism. Pray tell me how the hell is that going to happen when we are ourselves responsible for creating them, & further breeding them by simply defying basic human rights. Everyone states that the extremist are in a minority. I agree sure they are; the planners surely are in a minority but the people they use are recruited by playing on these basic deprivation that has been created. Another irony the design theorist behind d these folks of extremist so resemble the politicians. Their common bond; their talent of lying.  

Is the stress on ethical & moral values in every sector just a cover up to pretend that we do care about these things while in reality we don’t. In yester years when the pressing topic was not the protection of ethical & moral values people used to practice them by default anyways. So is the process of advancement & information age heading us to deterioration or progress?

In all this darkness the light can be seen through the fact that people in general have started to filter out & scrutinize the information that they are force fed. But then that is it. This change in attitudes is not reaching out to the areas where it is most required. People are still being killed in the name of the greater good & despite the fact that apparently maximum resources are poured in to fight terrorism no sold results have been reached. And until & unless the root cause is not hit we better not just hold to our empty optimism but be prepared for a further slip in the dark slide.


  1. Fatima,

    We cannot conceive right and wrong simply by watching the telly, or reading the news. It would be naive to expect these mediums to give us the truth, because they by their very nature work on their own agenda and in their own interest, not in the world's common interest, hence they give us an embellished and engineered version... right and wrong is bestowed purely on from high, objectively, and is free from human adulteration. Once one posseses that absolute, it is then and only then that he/she obtains the light to with which decipher the meanings of life.

    You are a good writer.

    Kashif Shahzada

  2. Agreed, but this is not the observation that the majority of the people make or more specifically used to make. This very tool was used to manipulate situations which resulted in what we are facing now.