Hitchens: Stop Caring So Much About Slain Soldiers

Are you concerned about American troops dying in Iraq? In columnist Christopher Hitchens’ eyes, you are part of the problem:

But the truly sobering reflection is that crimes and blunders of this kind are committed, in effect, by popular demand. It is emphasized every day that Americans do not want to read about dead soldiers. So it is arranged that, as far as possible, they will read (or perhaps not bother to read) about dead civilians instead. This is the price that a “body-bag” mentality exacts.

Also, newspapers shouldn’t report on military fatalities. That empowers insurgencies:

Incidentally, when is the New York Times going to start running a “Names of the Dead” regular feature from Afghanistan? And how long will it be, as the Taliban forces try for a comeback, before we hear demands for a deadline for withdrawal from Kabul as well? If “quagmirism” has its logic one way, then it has it the other way, too (unless you don’t believe that retreat also has its quagmires).


It’s amazing how far some will go to blame people other than the Bush administration for the problems in Iraq.