CF Communicators: Take Note…

…of this MUST READ about how the UK appears to be running its media operations in Helmand province (with a h/t to Mark at The Torch).

ESPECIALLY sad, if recounted as it occured, was disparaging remarks attributed to a senior British officer about a soldier running with his rucksack in the heat as P.T:

“The Major and I were driving in Camp Bastion around midday when it was very hot.  A British soldier ran by wearing a rucksack. He was drenched in sweat under the blazing, dusty desert.  I smiled because it’s great to see so many soldiers who work and train hard. Yet the Major cut fun at the soldier, saying he was dumb to be running in that heat. “

Another interesting observation from Yon:

“There is the maxim that a customer can judge the cleanliness of a restaurant’s kitchen by the restroom.  After much experience in Iraq and Afghanistan, I have discovered another: Soldiers always treat correspondents they way they treat the local people.  When soldiers treat correspondents badly, they treat local people even worse and are creating enemies.  Those troops who brag about how they mistreat or detest correspondents are abusing and resentful of the local population, and they cannot win this sort of war.”

Again, a MUST READ if you’re in the communications business in ANY branch of government or the private sector.

UPDATE:  A good best practice – Major Paul Smyth of the Helmand Media Ops blog (as well as the Media Ops Twitter Feed) checks in here, saying he was NOT the Major mentioned in Micheal Yon’s blog entry.

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