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The Media Portrayal Of Islam Essay

995 words - 4 pages

The Media Portrayal of Islam

Islam is portrayed and is commonly accepted as the most violent and largest direct threat to the West. This is a generalization made by most of the West, but it is not particularly the West or the Islamic people’s fault. There is constant turmoil in Islamic countries in the Middle East and these conflicts are what make the news in the West. The only representation in the media that the Islamic nation gets is that of war. Though most Islamic people are not violent, the select few that do participate in terrorist groups give the rest of the Islam nation a bad image.

The news today has to do with what people want to hear, not particularly what is worth while or even accurate. In the Daily Telegraph’s (English newspaper) foreign news page there is a story of an outbreak of violence by political protests in the Middle East. Patrick Bishop, the senior editor on Middle Eastern affairs, writes: "Western leaders are becoming increasingly concerned by the threat to democracy posed by the growth of Islamic fundamentalists extremism." Other headlines from random British newspapers convey the same message: "Italy on security alert after Islam terror warning; Clinton to lead summit against Islamic terror; France fears protracted Islam terror campaign; Islamic fanatics gun down Briton in terror campaign" (Edward Mortimer). This is the message that the media is sending to all its readers and watchers about Islam. These headlines may have happened but if people continue to read these sort of messages day in and day out it makes them think that Islam is full of terrorists and murders out to end Western civilization. The press has presented Islam within a certain emotional frame, and it has made the violence in the Middle East seem like the main interaction between the West and Middle East.

Ever since the bombing of the World Trade Center on February 1993 the United States of America has stepped up its commitment to stopping terrorism. The general public after the bombing also took a new view on Islam, a negative one. The February 7 arrest of Ramzi Yousef made the world open its eyes to Islamic terrorists. The FBI is even involved in terrorist investigations and it does not help the image of the Islamic people that most wanted man by the United States of America is Usama Bin Laden, a Saudi Arabian. He is the leader of the terrorist organization known as Al-Qaeda, which is one of the most active terrorist groups. His central issue is the United States presence in the Arabian Peninsula and the military presence in his former homeland Saudi Arabia. Bin Laden made a declaration in February 1999 in the name of his "International Islamic Front for Jihad against Jews and Crusaders." He stated that "to kill Americans and their allies, both civil and military, is an individual duty of every...

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