Western public perception is driven by the media, and the media can be influenced by repeating a proposition often enough so that it acquires momentum. Especially if that proposition is passed along as the ‘alternative’ explanation that journalists want to contrast versus the ‘official’ one. This passes a huge power to those who seek to own the alternative narrative. Which is what probably motivates all opinion makers especially those who are indeed repetitive. Lenin said “A lie told often enough becomes the truth.” Things don’t necessarily need to be lies in order for repetition to work its magic. It just has to be plausible and apparently widely held for it to become the alternative narrative.
Mistrust of western objectives reinforced by the debacle in Iraq have lead to what looks like sensible Russian and Chinese foreign policies, policies that now provide cover for ‘the most brutal civil war of them all’ according to the economist. ( http://www.economist.com/blogs/pomegranate/2013/04/syria%E2%80%99s-civil-war )
According to the article there are 70,000 dead and a quarter of the population is displaced with the number of Syrians requiring humanitarian aid projected to exceed 10m by the end of the year. It is an explosion in slow motion in one of the most volatile regions of the planet. And it is continuing because the west lost control of the narrative in the media and no longer can rally a global coalition.
The US invasion of Iraq is geopolitically much more significant than Vietnam because it exposed the hubris in the Bush administration’s agenda. It is a chink in the US armor that no amount of Obama doctrine can truly heal. It is a weak spot that is far too valuable for too many to exploit.