Spamming for America


The New York Times reports that America's "growing arsenal of psychological weapons" includes spam and telemarketing.

American cyber-warfare experts recently waged an e-mail assault, directed at Iraq's political, military and economic leadership, urging them to break with Saddam Hussein's government. A wave of calls has gone out to the private cellphone numbers of specially selected officials inside Iraq, according to leaders at the Pentagon and in the regional Central Command.

Presumably the subject line on the e-mail solicitations promises the "Secret of Life Extension!!!" and the telemarketers ask to speak to "the henchman of the house." If such tactics provide the key to an easy victory, direct marketers may see their reputations improve. In this case, though, a response rate below 1 percent probably won't do the trick.