"IS TRUTH STILL THE FIRST CASUALTY OF MODERN WARFARE?""In war, truth is the first casualty." Aeschylus, Greek tragic dramatist  (525 BC - 456 BC). This quote is more than 2000 years old. Is it...


"In war, truth is the first casualty." Aeschylus, Greek tragic dramatist  (525 BC - 456 BC). This quote is more than 2000 years old. Is it still true for the War on Terror?

I really do not know where to start with this homework assignment. Please can you give me a few 'starters' that I can build into a 2,500 word essay.

Expert Answers
litteacher8 eNotes educator| Certified Educator
War is about secrets. Every country lies to its people and to the people of the other countries. Propaganda and misinformation are routinely used. However, war is also about the search for truth. Intelligence is the key to winning a war, and both sides desperately need it to win.
epollock | Student

I would start with the idea of how participants in a war view the original beginnings, and then relate how parties in conflict want their positions reflected better. You could find a few where the original causes are in dispute, and then find some conflicts where the governments do not want official media reporting because it might look badly on one side or the other. It even reminds me of the Sheperdsons and Grangerfords of Twain's "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn."

krishna-agrawala | Student

Countries at war must of necessity hide some information from their enemies, and to do this effectively they must also hide such information from there own people. There might also be need to actually misinform people to achieve absolutely acceptable objective of preventing panic and keeping up the morale of their own people. Similarly, it is considered quite ethical to engage in false propaganda to lower the morale of enemy.

Unfortunately, in addition to these justified uses of lies in war, some unscrupulous leaders also use false propaganda to initiate and continue wars that are not really in the interest of the people.

frizzyperm | Student

Every conflict is full of lies, including The War on Terror. America is not immune from propaganda. There are big lies and small lies. Here are some by our government in The War on Terror.

1) Big Lie; "Saddam Hussein was partly responsible for 9/11." To hoodwink the American people, the Bush Administration repeatedly claimed Saddam was involved in 9/11. In March 2003, 65% of Americans believed he was involved and approved the war. It was a deliberate lie. Six months after the invasion, Rumsfeld admitted there was no link afterall. 

2) Big Lie; "Saddam has Weapons of Mass Destruction." Again, before the invasion, the Bush administration claimed Saddam had chemical and biological weapons. They said they couldn't show proof for security reasons, but asked for the peoples' trust. Saddam had no WMD. It was a lie to gain support for their war.

3) Big Lie; "The War in Iraq is part of The War on Terror" This is also a lie. There has been no evidence to link Iraq to a terrorist threat for America. The War in Iraq was a military adventure to secure the un-named goals of the Bush Administration.

4) Big Lie, "Our troops always fight for freedom". The belief that the US military represents the ideals of America and is used exclusively for the promotion of Freedom and Democracy is perhaps the most succesful propaganda in America.

5) Small Lies; follow this link for an example of lying in modern conflict. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jessica_Lynch