CBS' Pizzey and NBC's Engel both covered the first day of the 82nd Airborne Division's patrols in the Sadr City zone of Baghdad yesterday. Now ABC's Terry McCarthy (subscription required) played catch up. He saw "commerce is making a comeback; markets are more crowded; some stores that closed are reopened; and death squad killings are down." For US troops, Sadr City "has been a pleasant surprise" as the militias have melted away.
Back at the desert camp, NBC's Williams contrasted soldiers' soundbites evincing enthusiasm for their mission with an obvious yearning to be home. American corporate logos are plastered all over the facilities at Camp Victory as if it were a NASCAR racer: Popeyes, Burger King, Cinnabon, Seattle's Best, Subway, Pizza Hut--"emphasis on hut." When one sergeant finished telling Williams how committed she was to saying the course in Iraq, she could not hide her glee that she had only three more days in Baghdad before she was homeward bound.
War Sponsors is the title and then they list fast food brands as if they are pumping dollars into the war fund in exchange for banners at the bases. What an awful, misrepresentation. Bottom line is that these fast food places are onbase so that they soldiers can get a taste of home while in the middle of the desert. In true capitalism form, the franchisees who run these restaurants are looking for profit. But the logo's are not up because the fast food joints are 'sponsoring' the war, the logos are pure advertising as each branding is trying to get the solider's lunch dollar.
By the way, this is not new and isn't war related. These same restaurants have been on American bases in peaceful locations like Germany and Italy for years.
For the record, NBC's anchor Brian Williams never stated that this war is brought to us by corporate sponsors. My observation was inspired by the visual incongruity in his report--a bleak tent-filled camouflage-colored desert where the only bright colors were in the proliferation of corporate logos. Knowing that Williams is a NASCAR fan I made that connection.
By the way, "BKer" could not refer to your personal taste for Burger King could it?
Actually, I love that chicken from Popeyes! Thanks for the clarification Andrew.
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