The Role of Media on Middle Eastern Conflicts
'By now, all of us realize that there is a high powered media campaign aimed at promoting the war on Iraq and shaping the views of the American people, relying on media-savvy political strategy to sell the administration's priorities and policies'
'Systematic sources of bias in TV coverage of international affairs not only distort information, but can also restrict citizens' awareness and options, and thereby produce more social control. The focus here is on the way TV news formats can limit, constrain, and distort information about terrorism.'
The relationships between countries in the Middle East and with the West have never been ones of peace or tranquility, and in recent years these relationships seem to be headed in a downward spiral. Currently, there has been an increasingly intense clash between the citizens of all societies that is largely a reaction against what is perceived through the news media about the other society. While the general public goes about watching their favorite nightly news broadcasts, they are unaware that the very knowledge they hope will educate them about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the War in Iraq, is actually one of the primary factors leading to the strain between our two differing societies. This is largely the result of the way news coverage is produced and presented in the United States, the Middle East, and around the world. In the United States, there are many facets that determine how news about the Middle East is produced and presented. Ultimately, these news reports determine how the American people view Middle East societies and unfortunately, how they view people of Middle Eastern ethnicity within the United States. The media?s causal effects, however, on the conflicts in the Middle East as a result of the portrayal of both sides and the influences it has on people?s perceptions about the situation, cannot be solely blamed on the media itself, but can be attributed to the underlying factors that influence media companies. Among these underlying factors responsible for media?s societal influence is the relationship within the United States between our government and the companies that control our media. Relationships between governments and media companies around the world, created in the best interests of both parties, severely hinder people?s ability to receive objective information on which to base their opinions about their government?s policies and actions. This leads to an egregious misunderstanding and misrepresentation of world politics and issues, which receive substantial amounts of media airtime. Despite the despairingly negative influence that our large media conglomerates are having on shaping our political environment, it is important to investigate the role of non-profit media organizations in the distribution of information about the conflicts in the Middle East to further determine causality of our current societal...