Monday, March 24, 2008

Anti-Resolve Statements Embolden Enemy

Proof positive is here. Harvard researchers say "publicly voiced doubts about the U.S. occupation of Iraq have a measurable "emboldenment effect" on insurgents there.

"Periods of intense news media coverage in the United States of criticism about the war, or of polling about public opinion on the conflict, are followed by a small but quantifiable increases in the number of attacks on civilians and U.S. forces in Iraq."

The Emboldenment Effect, the measurable increase in attacks, is more evident in Iraq where access to the internet is greatest. "We find that in periods immediately after a spike in anti-resolve statements, the level of insurgent attacks increases."

Radha Iyengar, the researcher and smart person, tracked insurgent attack data, U.S. media reporting of U.S. politician's "anti-resolve statements," and American public opinion polls about the war up to November 2007. In socially and economically comparable Iraqi provinces, there was an increase of attacks of 7% - 10% immediately after "high-mention weeks." The two weeks leading up to the Nov 2006 elections was one such period.

Peer review suggests this is a strong study that could be made more robust by including "pro-resolve" statements. Anti-resolve statements could encourage the bad guys to step up the attacks in the belief that greater violence hastens the departure of Coalition Forces while pro-resolve statement conceivably could make the enemy angry, frustrated, and likely to strike out more violently .

Judith Apter Klinghoffer, an affiliate professor at Haifa University, and writer of the History News Network blog, Deja Vu, reminds that this study should not be seen in isolation. What applies in Iraq also applies in Israel, Sri Lanka, and Britain. It's not just the U.S. media, but media everywhere "have terror victims blood on its hands. Denial is no longer possible."

She further writes, "Moreover, the same can be said about presidential candidates. Note the rise in attacks before the November 2006 elections as well as the recent pre-election rise. Obama and Clinton should not be permitted to ignore the fact that careless comments will cost the lives of American soldiers."

Washington Times
History News Network

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.


Mike H. said...

Umm, Duh?

Backstabbing your gov't has no effect on the enemy at all!

Now we need to get to work here, my catalogue of bridges is dwindling fast. Hurry while I've still got some to sell.

Tom said...

Why is it we need a study to prove what common sense should already tell us? Oh yeah...I forgot...we've thrown all that away in favor of political correctness.

Indigo Red said...

Of course, we all knew this some time ago. Without evidence, however, it's just anecdote and easily dissmissed by the "anti" forces. Now there is something to which we can point and say, "The blood is on your hands because you said X and here is the evidence."

Such research makes the position of Code Pink, that they are saving the lives of US service members, very much less secure in their self-righteousness.

Common sense, said Voltaire, is the least common thing in the world.

Mike H. said...

Yeah, but Indigo, evidence is obtained by opening their eyes, a simple operation for most people.

Indigo Red said...

I understand the futility of addressing any question to liberal deadheads. The fact remains, if I have only a vague feeling and no facts, that makes me as pinheaded as they are.

With this study, which was easily done at low cost, I can be certain in my own mind that I am right and the universe agrees. And the liberals still have a vague feeling and no evidence.