- We study how words are used as instruments of conflict and weapons of warfare.
- We look at how the meanings of words differ among languages and cultures, and often within the same language and culture.
- We examine how the nation’s adversaries and enemies have used our own understandings of words against us, and how we accepted those hostile definitions as our own.
- Finally, we discuss how we can take the language back from the enemy and make it work for the wartime and long-term interests of civilized society.
The human mind is the battlespace of the war of ideas. Words and images create, define and elaborate ideas, and are used to popularize or destroy their appeal. They require relentless repetition. Words are not static objects. The written and spoken word, as George Orwell said, can be used “as an instrument which we shape for our own purposes.”
To fit in with the change of events, words, too, had to change their usual meanings. What used to be described as a thoughtless