Wednesday, December 21, 2005

BS detector

When the current Iraq War was launched by Bush in early 2003, a site called Iraq Body Count was also launched. They used the cool image shown above, a B2 bomber dropping a whole bunch of bombs. My BS detector went off immediately. B2s, I reasoned, normally drop precision munitions, one or two at a time, not a whole stick like this. And furthermore, these looked like gravity bombs, or "dumb" bombs. What would be the point of using a B2 at high altitude to drop a bunch of bombs that would probably go astray? It's great way to conduct ordnance disposal in the Iraqi desert, but why use a B2 to do it? Even B-52s these days mostly employ precision munitions.

I suspected that the owners of the site had Photoshopped an image of a bunch of dumb bombs from Vietnam underneath a B2 in order to make things look more sinister.

I did my research, and determined what kind of bombs were likely shown in the image. They were dumb bombs.

Then I wrote an email to the site owners.

They replied that this was an actual photo of a B2 dropping bombs. They showed me the source, which I think was some aviation magazine or DoD site.

Fair enough, I thought, but no such mission was flown over Iraq in the current conflict. Intending to tell them this, and accuse them of being misleading, I did my research. It turned out that two, exactly two (2), missions had been flown in the current Iraq war, in which B2s dropped dozens of dumb bombs on Iraq.

Sometimes the facts get in the way of correcting other people.

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