With recent Iran events in the news lately, I think it’s good to remind ourselves how to spot war propaganda. This article has lots of good points on what to look for in the news, why it’s propaganda, and how to respond. I recommend the full article, but some of the takeaways are:
- Don’t just take government official at their word. Any claim needs evidence that that’s 100% correct, not “mostly correct” or “just trust me.”
- Don’t let bullying mischaracterizations silence you. People can twist any criticism of America’s actions into “oh you must love the terrorists” to shut you up.
- Don’t let others change the focus. Others will focus on how “strategic” or “hypocritical” a decision is instead of how “wrong” it is.
- Imagine the same news from the other side about us. This helps remove the distorting nationalism from our views.
- Watch the language being used. People will say “neutralization” instead of “assassination” since it sounds better, even if it conceals facts and is less accurate.
- Remember what they used to say. People starting a war now may have said their first strike a week ago was about “stopping a war.”
- Listen to the dissidents. Watch for the same tricks from them, but still, find other sources. They help you fight the misinformation and break out of the bubble others want you in.