BUT originally published in the online IRISH DEMOCRAT in September 2005 under the pseudonym “Pangloss”
“ISN’T THIS A FORTUNATE GENERATION?
No longer need we live in ignorance of how our fellow men, women and children live, or die.
Twenty-four hour radio, television and internet. Billions of mobile phones, Newspaper chains and multimedia empires dedicated to giving us news with impartiality and empowering us to form opinions and to act rationally and morally on them.
Why,even NATO forces and Israeli forces have journalists “embedded” with them for forays beyond their borders.
Only a cynic might remember that marauding armies always had whores embedded with them, and suggest that embedded journalists make no qualitative difference.
The British Army is particularly generous in this respect. A Lieutenant Bury, an Irish citizen from County Wicklow, has reported on his unit’s activity in Afghanistan and Dublin’s IRISH TIMES jumped into bed with it.
So it comes as something of a shock to learn that Lt.Col. Owen McNally of the British army’s Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers was arrested in Kabul by Britain’s Royal Military Police and flown under custody to the UK. It seems he is to be charged with a breach of the Official Secrets Act.
His alleged offence? Giving an estimate of civilian casualties killed and wounded during NATO operations in Afghanistan.
Operations undertaken “to bring peace and prosperity to the Afghan people.”