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Tuesday, May 12, 2009


"Fragging" - AP attempts to rewrite history

Covering the tragic story of the American soldier who killed five of his fellow soldiers at a military counseling center in Iraq, AP writes (in the third paragraph no less, which is why I've heard exactly the same thing repeated on TV news broadcasts):
Attacks on fellow soldiers, known as fraggings, were not uncommon during the Vietnam war but are believed to be rare in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Is this plain ignorance on the part of a young reporter, or a willful rewriting of history? My money's on the latter, because a simple trip to Wikipedia will teach you that fragging had nothing to do with killing "fellow soldiers":
Fragging most often involved the murder of a commanding officer or a senior noncommissioned officer perceived as unpopular, harsh, inept, or overzealous. Many soldiers were not overly keen to go into harm's way, and preferred leaders with a similar sense of self-preservation.
Reminding today's readers that American soldiers do not like risking their lives for unpopular causes, and will even go as far as killing their own officers as a result? No, that wouldn't do.

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