Modern psychological operations, or PSYOP,... is not unlike the public advertising that we are all exposed to wherever we go, every day, through all kinds of mass media. (US Airborne, Psychological Operations/Warfare )
The Pentagon has released yet another mysterious video allegedly discovered in April by US forces in a hideout in the Al-Yusufiyah neighborhood of southern Baghdad. The video portrays "Terror Mastermind" Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi acting in a "foolish" and "incompetent" fashion. He appears "confused" on how to handle a US M-249 squad automatic weapon (SAW), which every US serviceman learns from day one.
Without further examination, the US media concurs in chorus: the video is authentic and the enemy is "incompetent". Echoing the official Pentagon statement, the video, which portrays Zarqawi in US-style sneakers, mishandling a US produced machine gun, is casually categorized as "Al Qaeda propaganda", apparently intended to boost Zarqawi's image among his numerous followers. According to CBS Charles Osgood: "Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the most wanted terrorist in Iraq, obviously wanted to show his followers and the world what a fierce and fearsome warrior he is. So on one of his recent propaganda videotapes, he's seen in the desert firing long bursts from a machine gun." (CBS, 5 May 2006, emphasis added)