The News: International “Objective” Informant

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The News: International “Objective” Informant

War is rarely an event looked forward to by many people. It involves death, abandonment, guilt, money, deceit, and an ultimate loss of too many elements to list them all. However there is rarely a time when there is not a war going on in some part of the country. For wars to happen there has to be people willing to fight in them. With so much at stake and so mush to lose it is often a wonder how governments, which are seldom trusted anyway, convince their citizens to support their various war efforts. With closer speculation it becomes quite clear how this is accomplished: the media. Whether print, radio, or television the media gives the public a sense of getting the real story. With this in mind it is much easier to persuade citizens that wars are necessary. Medias role in the politics of war is an often debated topic by those who believe the role is minimal and those who believe that media plays the utmost importance. Although there is no universal opinion, looking at different theories proposed and the wars of the past it is difficult to question how influential media is when dealing with any type of governmental action especially war.

Although under constant scrutiny, the media plays a very significant role in the politics of warfare. Many believe that “governments seek cooperation, if not outright support, from the media to legitimize military action” (Thussu and Freedman 128). Media of Conflict argues that the media serves several purposes in the continuance of conflict. First it claims, “national media coverage has had the effect of exacerbating conflict as a result of conscious political strategies by political activists”(Allen 3). This has often been the case when politicians have the support of journalists, and they work in conjunction to present a certain image full of sensationalism and less insight. The second claim is that “wars are what the media makes of them”(Allen 3). This does apply to the shaping of military strategies but more importantly deals with representation of violence. The media has the ability to make certain forms of killing acceptable while making others appear inhumane and unnecessary. Media of Conflict’s most important point about the purpose of media is found in the declaration that “how wars are made, how participants strategize their interests, how and if
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