Category Archives: Virtual War Lords

Prine vs. Burden for the Military Information Championship of the World

In this corner,

Matt Burden,

blogging as BlackFive .

In this corner, Carl Prine,

commenting as

Action Hero Sock Puppet.


Action Hero Sock Puppet has been a troll at Blackfive going on two and a half years, tolerated because he served and in my humble opinion is thus afforded courtesy he would not otherwise receive. 

one of the Trib’s investigative reporters, was embedded with the 1st Marine Division. Prine, 36, joined the Trib’s special-projects team in July 2000. His reporting on local heroin abuse has won state and local journalism awards. His 2002 special report on security lapses at chemical and nuclear-power plants was a finalist for the prestigious Oakes Awards and has been recognized by two journalism organizations — Investigative Reporters and Editors and the Society of Environmental Journalists. He is a U.S. Marine veteran of the 1991 Persian Gulf War and previously worked as a combat correspondent in Sierra Leone for the Christian Science Monitor.

An investigative journalist for a second-tier Main Stream Media outlet with significant military experience.  Embedded with  1st MAR DIV, went to Baghdad with them.  A cursory peek at what he reported five years ago looks fairly decent to me.  I first heard of him the other night when he came on PBS.  It was an old rerun, but it was new to me.  He enlisted in the Pennsylvania Army National Guard and went back to Iraq as a shooter.   Whatever douchebaggery he may or may not be guilty of, he has cred.  Cred which he is attempting to trade on in bolstering the reputation of the Main Stream Media as purveyors of Strategic Communications pertaining to the United States Armed Forces and running down the effectiveness of New Media as purveyors of same.

Milblogs exist because millions of serving and former American military personnel and their family members and friends and supporters lost confidence in the objectivity of the MSM.  The anti-war, anti-Bush, anti-military BIAS of the American MSM, the objectively pro-insurgent tone of most of the reporting, and an intolerable predisposition on the part of the press to believe the worst about those fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan created a demand for

real experiences flying unfiltered to anyone with an Internet connection and an interest.*

The unfiltered part was the basis of milblog credibility. 

In a nation with decreasing numbers of citizens who have any personal connection to the military, blogs serve to educate those who are interested about the values, beliefs, and humanity of those in uniform. To augment the efforts of Army journalists, blogs offer readers a soldier’s-eye report that seems more credible – straight from the trenches, complete with interesting anecdotes and colorful descriptions – a perspective that is clearly unsanitized by Army leadership.17  According to one retired officer, “The best blogs offer a taste of reality of Iraq or Afghanistan that the news media rarely capture. And they’re often a grand, irreverent hoot.”18

MAJ Robbins understood the value of hundreds of unofficial  part-time PSYOPers contributing to the effort to engage the domestic target audience’s attention, interest and support for the mission and the people carrying it out.  But those days are gone.  PA, IA, and OPSEC triumphed over PO.  Active duty bloggers face ever more restrictions.  Blogs are being blocked from government computers.  Milbloggers, potential milbloggers, and commenters are being herded into pass-word protected, IA-approved Army Knowledge Online cyber ghettoes inaccessible to the unsponsored.

The people who thought milblogs were a good thing are on the way out.

Whoever gets in will be even less appreciative. 

Regime change in Washington is going to reverberate throughout the blogosphere for as long as it lasts, which may not be long. 

Interpreting milspeak to the general public, encouraging support for the troops and their missions, cheerleading, disseminating good news, bolstering the people’s will to endeavor to persevere, pushing back against those who would blow up recruiting stations, vandalize memorials, desecrate funerals, and spit on soldiers is a campaign in the War of Ideas that will continue after the election, but it will have to be fought by the only force left that is free to speak, while they still are free to speak.

MSM War Correspondent vs. Virtual Warlord.  Credibility is in the eye of the beholder. 


*Matthew Currier Burden, The Blog of War, Simon & Schuster Paperbacks, New York, 2006, p. 4


Filed under Electronic Counter Media, Old Media, PSYOP Auxiliaries, Virtual War Lords


The War Lord of Argghhh! was on a panel about milblogging which I just watched.   Sure wish I could have found the transcript!  I can read faster than those guys can talk.  I’ll never get that 1:18:52 back, but there were some nuggets in there, like when and where the next MilBlog Conference will be.  If you want to understand milblogging you ought to watch it. 

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Filed under About, Virtual War Lords

C-in-C Meets IO Warlords

Somebody in the White House must have read Blogospheric Resistance

If you have ever commented on one of the blogs listed below, somebody in the White House has probably read what you said, too.  The President, War Czar LTG Doug Lute, Tony Snow, Dana Perino, Stephen Hadley, and others could be in your audience.

I’m excited.


First Impressions of meeting with the President.   — John of Argghhh!

So What Did YOU Do Today? — Mrs. Greyhawk

ThreatsWatch at the White House — Steve Schippert

Mrs. G lists


John of Argghhh!
A Soldier’s Perspective
Steve Shippert
NZ Bear
Mohammed of Iraq the Model
Bill Ardolino
Bill Roggio

as the IO War Lords who participated in this loya jirga. 

Push back from the port side of the blogosphere will be entertaining.

DefenseTech Meets With President Bush

President Bush Meets with N.Z., Milbloggers





Filed under Virtual War Lords