The Empire’s Dog Feces: A Dolphin Tale

Posted in Culture of Lickspittle at 10:19 am by George Smith

The Atlantic’s blogs are IQ tests for people who believe themselves smart but lacking observable evidence to back up such confidence. They’re intelligence exams, very simple, and they work like this: If you read or take them seriously, you flunk.

When the media gets focused on war it cranks out crap on all the allegedly wonderful things the US military will bring to bear. The professional bootlicking takes the form of reporting on the many and fine capabilities the armed forces will use to cover any contingency.

Back at the beginning of the Iraq disaster I came up with a column at the Village Voice called Weapon of the Week which worked off this. The idea was to unleash a counter-balancing superciliousness.

And it was well-conceived, perfect for what would unfold. Shock and Awe. Bugsplat — the bombing software that would save lives. The Thermobaric Bomb.

All bullshit, all glorified in the mainstream media as miraculous things.

And there was even Zak the Sea Lion, part of the Navy’s mammalian warriors program.

Zak and various dolphins were going to smite Saddam Hussein’s frogmen — did he even have any (?) — and help sweep mines and stuff.

Today at the Atlantic, some miscellaneous sack of fancy shit premium journalist informs:

If Iran closes the Strait of Hormuz, the U.S. Navy has a backup plan to save one-fifth of the world’s daily oil trade: send in the dolphins …

Iran could block the strait with any assortment of mines, armed speed boats or anti-ship cruise missiles but according to Michael Connell at the Center for Naval Analysis, “The immediate issue [for the U.S. military] is to get the mines.??? To solve that problem, the Navy has a solution that isn’t heavily-advertised but has a time-tested success rate: mine-detecting dolphins …

The invasion of Iraq was the last time the minesweeping capability of dolphins were widely-touted. “Dolphins – – which possess sonar so keen they can discern a quarter from a dime when blindfolded and spot a 3-inch metal sphere from 370 feet away — are invaluable minesweepers,” reported The San Francisco Chronicle. In 2010, the Seattle Times reported that the Navy has 80 bottlenose dolphins in the San Diego Bay alone …

And when was the last time you heard of a mine sinking a navy vessel in San Diego harbor, USA? Never! So those dolphins musta been doin’ a heckuva job, Brownie!

From NPR, more of the same stenography:

The surveillance includes sophisticated drone aircraft — and a sophisticated mammal.

“We’ve got dolphins. … They are astounding in their ability to detect underwater objects,” he says.

The U.S. Navy sent dolphins to the Persian Gulf as part of the American invasion force in Iraq. Keating confirms they were “present in the theater,” but he declines to talk about whether the animals were used or not.

Keywords, DD blog: See The Green Pantywaists

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