Leaked, UK Military researches opposition

20 02 2009

Care of wikileaks, it appears the UK military, or at least their media and PR guys recruited and trained to make us think of droppings bombs as more of pass-time than murder, has “domestic opinion leaders” according to the following report.

Exposed: UK military “Media Operations” are designed to manipulate UK population and opinion leaders

JULIAN ASSANGE (Investigative Editor)
October 10, 2008, updated October 18, 2008.

UK military “Media Operations” have as their “principal target” the entire UK population, especially those who “hold disproportionate influence on the direction of government”, including “politicians… newspaper columnists… and journalists”.

The revelations come from a central UK policy document written late last year, which states that it is not to be circulated outside the UK Ministry of Defence, The document, Joint Doctrine Publication 3-45.1: Media Operations, was promulgated by the Chiefs of Staff in September 2007 and describes itself as “the key document” for military media operations. It was accidentally exposed on the MoD website and subsequently released by Wikileaks.

The policy states that while the entire UK population is usually considered the “principal target”, among the “overlapping sub-sets across the spectrum of UK society”, the “most influential target” is “the limited group of people who hold disproportionate influence on the direction of government and public thinking and policy development”. This group includes “politicians and statesmen, members of ‘think-tanks’ and professional bodies, special political advisers, newspaper columnists, academics, analysts and journalists (who are increasingly voicing opinions on current affairs issues)”.

The policy dissects the UK fourth estate with cynical realism, declaring that tabloids are for

“People [who] will buy a newspaper that will make them feel safe in their own opinions”

while “the more ‘intellectual’ papers, [the broadsheets], merely”

“inform readers who had already established their own opinion on matters”.

The report shows that the UK government has learned little from earlier scandals such as Operation Mass Appeal, where MI6 planted stories prior to the invasion of Iraq to boost support for the war[1]. In the United States such domestic propaganda operations are illegal and while there have been a number of violations, there has also been a number of subsequent investigations into those violations.

This piece is interesting because it highlights two things.  While it is a clear ‘no-brainer’ in regards to the strategic importance of positions that shape public opinion, the UK military has gone done the hard work for the rest of us and established where our attention should lie.  A sort of battlefield with regard to spreading the anti-state message, (you know, that one where we all get screwed while members of the state and their friends are better off because of the state’s ability to coerce… well… us).  Although we would do well to ignore the mentioning of politicians and statesmen, as they are parasites.

Secondly, it becomes a little disconcerting when it is stated in black and white that the military is trying its utmost to convince people, particularly those who are supposed to have an independent take by definition, that their bloody business is righteous and pure.

So, hats off to those like Shawn Wilbur and Christopher Lempa who are working to put out Anarchist publications.  Even if they aren’t widely distributed as we would like.  But you gotta start somewhere.




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