I was watching Captain America the other night and it occurred to me that wars are won with propaganda. Every government knows it.
By the skillful and sustained use of propaganda, one can make a people see even heaven as hell or an extremely wretched life as paradise”
Adolf Hitler quotes (German Chancellor, leader of the Nazi party, 1889-1945)
“One cannot wage war under present conditions without the support of public opinion, which is tremendously molded by the press and other forms of propaganda.”
Douglas MacArthur quotes (American General who commanded the Southwest Pacific Theatre in World War II, 1880-1964)
Propaganda has played a huge roll in wars since time began. Even the book series the Hunger Games was a study in propaganda war. Propaganda can bring people together behind a cause. Every poster or commercial you see is a type of propaganda. This can be extremely effective when used properly.
For example: World War II.
War propaganda during World War I and II was very encouraging.
It was always about getting behind our troops to stop the enemy. It was about doing your part to win the war. It was about using all resources and letting nothing go to waste.
It was everyone’s duty to help even to the point of keeping information secret to help the war effort. Both sides had this kind of propaganda. Because of propaganda, the solidarity that was part and parcel of the World Wars is something that we will likely never see again. The lines were clearly drawn and it was easier to know whose side you were on back then versus now. There were clear goals in those wars. The wars were long and costly in lives and in resources but they did finally end.
Propaganda was used correctly and effectively until now…
“The goal of modern propaganda is no longer to transform opinion but to arouse an active and mythical belief”
“(Propaganda) proceeds by psychological manipulations, character modifications, by creation of stereotypes useful when the time comes – The two great routes that this sub-propaganda takes are the conditioned reflex and the myth”
This most recent war has been dragging on for years. War on Terror. Using such a vague title was the first de-evolutionary step of modern propaganda. No one really knows for sure who the enemy is or even who we are fighting most of the time. War has evolved into a paranoia fest. Any person you meet could be friend or foe.
No one knows who or what we are afraid of. We make fun of danger and create our own form of terror by undermining faith in our own media and government. I’m not saying that our media should be believed. I’m one of the biggest skeptics and cynics you’ll ever meet, but the psychological factors can’t be denied.
Everyone Tweets, Facebooks, Instagrams, and who knows what else about their opinions about the war, the government, and the media. There is no right or wrong answer because no one really knows what is going on. Are we fighting for freedom? Oh, really? Whose? Is it for oil? Is it for revenge? Do we even need to be interfering with other country’s governments to begin with?
“Propaganda is a soft weapon; hold it in your hands too long, and it will move about like a snake, and strike the other way.”
—Jean Anouilh, L’Alouette, 1952
These wars will never end. There will always be excuses and insults that need redressing. They will go on forever because there is no common goal. The governments have failed to use propaganda to bring their movements to solidarity. The widespread use of opinion and image stereotyping has bred contempt and disintegration of our belief systems.
If people in the media cannot decide whether they are in the business of reporting news or manufacturing propaganda, it is all the more important that the public understand that difference, and choose their news sources accordingly.
No one who to believe or where to look now. It’s every man for himself now. I don’t condone use of propaganda to herd the masses into obedience or false belief but psychologically humans can’t help themselves. They need to be in groups and because of the de-evolution of leadership these groups won’t maintain their structure long enough to put and end to wars. The world as a whole has suffered because of the de-evolution of propoganda and war and if wars are won with propaganda then there will never be a winner again.