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Monday, August 23, 2010 

The egregious Dr Fox and the K factor.

Liam Fox's call for the new Medal of Honour game to be banned as you can play as the Taliban is hardly the first time he's said something incredibly stupid involving media coverage of the war in Afghanistan. Back in 2006 he was outraged when the BBC dared to conduct an interview with a Taliban spokesman, issuing a remarkably similar diatribe about the corporation's treachery:

"We have become used to a non-stop anti-war agenda from the BBC but broadcasting propaganda on behalf of this country's enemies - at a time when our armed forces are being killed and maimed - marks a new low. The whole thing is obscene."

As Justin and Ben have both noted, one of Fox's heroes is Henry Kissinger, having presented him with the Margaret Thatcher Medal of Freedom in November of last year when Mr K visited our fair nation, sadly one of the few it seems where he isn't liable to be arrested for war crimes. He commented at the dinner:

There is a big debate right now about Afghanistan. We need to understand that this is not an issue about troop levels. The troop levels need to reflect a conclusion about what is at stake, not a maneuvering for relative domestic positions.

When we are engaged in something we do for others, we still need to have a conviction that, in an ultimate sense, we are doing it for ourselves, because we do not want to see Pakistan as a failed state. We do not want to have this crisis shift to the borders of India. Yet we do need some co-operation in how to think about this and what is the most effective common policy.

The idea that we aren't in Afghanistan for ourselves is absurd, yet that is endlessly the position which politicians and others who continue to defend the war present the status quo ante as being. We shouldn't then be surprised when, whether it's the BBC or of all things, a video game which show the war in a distinctly uncomfortable light that the likes of Dr Fox immediately jerk their knees.

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