As this poster from WWII communicates, one should not blithley give away information about military units or their precise movements. This is sheer common sense. Information is power in war. If you know where the enemy is, his routes of travel, and his strength at any particular location, then you can successfully attack and kill them. Such information in wartime is always classified and always closely guarded. It is a matter of life and death. This is all the more true when you are moving on the offensive - as the U.S. military is now doing. The U.S. military is in the opening stage of a massive Corps size offensive going on throughout Iraq, including in Diyala Province.
The BBC ran a story on the U.S. and Iraqi offensive in Diyala Province the other day. At the conclusion of the article, they appended the following request for information:
"Are you in Iraq? Have you seen any troop movements? If you have any information you would like to share with the BBC, you can do so using the form below."See here. There is an excellent discussion of this at the website Biased BBC. And the Telegraph provides some additional information on this incident:
A spokesman was unable to offer a detailed explanation of why anyone at the BBC should be seeking such information or whether any details on troop movements had been received.Read the entire article here. here. There is no legitimate reason whatsoever for the BBC to be seeking this information just as American soldiers are launching a major offensive. Information on troop movements during an offensive has no news value. Its only value is to the enemy. Even setting aside for the moment the virulently anti-American bent of the BBC, as well as their pro-Arab bent, it is quite reasonable that our government should be demanding a thorough investigation of who put up this request for information, who received information per the request, and whether it was retransmitted to anyone.
He refused to identify who put the message up but said that "the journalist" responsible had been reminded that "this is not a form of words we would use".
However, in a statement, the BBC added: "BBC Online regularly asks visitors to its websites to supply information they may have relating to a specific story through a response form posted at the end of a news item.
"This particular page should not have been published. The BBC never broadcasts or publishes information which may put British troops at increased risk."
The BBC has completely stepped over the line on this one.