Propaganda Analysis: Apparatus of Lies – Saddam’s Disinformation and Propaganda (1990-2003)

Is the report “Apparatus of Lies: Saddam’s Disinformation and Propaganda 1900-2003”, itself a form of propaganda? Use course material to explain why you think the report itself is persuasion rather than propaganda or why you think the report is propaganda.

It comes across as a great irony that the American state machinery should produce a report on purported propaganda carried out by Saddam Hussein. The United States is the birthplace for commercial advertising and the Public Relations industry. Today, even Presidential elections are reduced to marketing campaigns, masterminded by the same firms that advertise toothpaste and detergent. In this context, any report emanating from American agencies, despite their claim to objectivity, will have to be viewed with skepticism.

There is a stronger case to be made for Coalition propaganda in the lead up to the Gulf war, as well as in its wake. The very fact that the word ‘oil’ is left out of most Western coverage of the event, shows the depth of indoctrination on the part of media. It is an open secret now that the main American motive for the invasion of Iraq, both in 1990 and again in 2003, is the rich oil reserves that the country is blessed with. There is scant reference in mainstream American media and government releases about this commercial interest. What is presented is a false façade of high moral ground, which weakens their outcry over Iraqi propaganda.

Even granting that Saddam Hussein indulged in all forms of overt, covert, and unethical propaganda, there is no justification for America and its allies to better Saddam. All the citations in the bibliography are taken from Western media sources, which suggest bias. The exclusion of respected Arab media houses as Al Jazeera, further undermines the report’s neutrality. Seen in this milieu, the Apparatus of Lies report should itself be treated as propaganda, unless otherwise proved.

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