What the hell are we debating?

Wednesday's all day parliamentary debate on UK bombing in Syria, viewed in context of Tom Secker's refreshing analysis, is nothing more than procedural pantomime.

In an 18 minute DisInfoWars podcast, Secker proffers the question: "Who the hell are ISIS, anyway?" Surely a question any country calling itself democratic should be clarifying before lifting a finger, let alone bombing just hours after Hilary Benn's disingenuous, closing, Bullshit words. The SNP, Corbyn and others only tickled around the edges, warning of mission creep and questioning funding, oil revenues and arms supplies. But hours and hours of verbiage, whether for or against, was united around not mentioning the elephant in the room; Who the hell are ISIS, anyway?

Unlike the Parliamentarians, Secker begins by asking how ISIS, with an army of only 10 to 20 thousand, can apparently be "at war with Assad, with the coalition forces in Iraq, with the Iraqi government, with Al Qaeda in Syria and with Al Qaeda in general...and with NATO...and apparently now with Russia?"

He senses a huge amount of propaganda promoting the idea of ISIS one day being able to take over the Middle East. This elaborate Mythology is simply untrue; "10 thousand Jihadis in Syria with no air-force and little if any anti-air capacity are not a military challenge; if NATO really wanted to then they could wipe them off the map in a matter of weeks. The fact that they haven't done this speaks volumes."

Two major factors have helped us (and those in Wednesday's debate) to blindly accept the Elaborate Mythology; The development of the Al Qaeda myth and highly effective PR.

Associating the emergence of ISIS with 9/11 & Al Qaeda has helped build a powerful narrative. This, in spite of fighting between various terror groups and their inexplicable morphing into ISIS . The sudden emergence of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi as ISIS leader in 2010 has also been suitably mysterious. From his five years(?) internment in Iraq under the US military to his vague history.

Such inconsistencies though didn't stop observers picking up on similarities to 9/11, in presidential and media statements, made during the attacks on Paris a couple of weeks ago. Secker also notes how powerful the phrase "hallmarks of Al Qaeda" has become in offering an immediate media shorthand, which he describes as "classic double think, double speak".

It's the PR through the beheading videos which has proved most psychologically effective, particularly aimed at those sitting watching their TVs in the west. In true Hitchcock style Secker notes, it's what's left out that scares the crap out of the public; "nothing is scarier than your own imagination". The editing out of gore is cleverly done as it enables news programmes to show a good deal of the footage. While recommending strongly not to watch these highly disturbing films, Secker does add one other query, about the incongruous, professional, production quality, in particular the audio which doesn't sound like it's being "recorded by amateurs on a hillside in a breeze".

Finally it's the general dumbed down message that's being communicated to us all which should concern us. Secker powerfully describes this in a almost Ladybird Janet and John book, style: "Jihadi John is a member of ISIS. This is Jihadi John in the video. This is what ISIS are doing in Syria."

And this is how many of us encounter ISIS; as Secker puts it, "their power lies effectively in the media realm not in the real world. They are the first truly post modern terrorists in that respect... The Spectacle."

In answering the opening question he offers: "ISIS is a myth that isn't going to take over the world, that simply isn't going to happen. I know you all know this but I am re-emphasising it because it good both to state and to hear simple truths that keep us all grounded in reality."

Now where does that place Wednesday Parliamentary Parade?

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