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imperialism & war

Putting The Arab Media On Trial

The fall of Saddam Hussein's regime should be an opportunity to review the case of the Arab media, official and private, which not only ignored the atrocities of the Iraqi regime, but also created an unrealistic image, practiced more oppression and killed all the people by propagating political promotion.
Ada'af Al Imaan (Putting The Arab Media On Trial)
Dawood Al Shirian, Dar Al-Hayat, 2003/04/19

CNN came under fire when its CEO admitted that the network had withheld information about crimes committed by the Saddam Hussein's regime, so as to protect its sources.

All the television networks that were present in Iraq during the time of Saddam practiced a blackout, and they deserve to be treated just like CNN. While CNN and other companies can defend their positions by arguing that they feared for the lives of their staff in Iraq, which is a legitimate defense, the censorship imposed in Middle Eastern countries is only part of the problem. Moreover, journalism, just like politics, is the art of the possible. Thus accepting half the truth or a quarter of it is not a sin in journalism, if the price of the entire truth is death or torture. But the most important side of the issue is not just concealing the truth, but promoting lies and forging the facts, as well as defending oppression in a most frightful way, which is what the Arab media does.

It is the Arab media that deserves the campaign waged against CNN. The fall of Saddam Hussein's regime should be an opportunity to review the case of the Arab media, official and private, which not only ignored the atrocities of the Iraqi regime, but also created an unrealistic image, practiced more oppression and killed all the people by propagating political promotion. Regrettably, it pursues such practices with other regimes in the region and the world. Thus, it is important to expand the perception of war crimes to include all those who have played a role in such a serious matter. The Arab media bears part of the responsibility for seeing Iraq reach such a situation today, because it conspired with Saddam and made a national hero out of him. Consequently, it must fall with him, before it implicates us with one country after another.

homepage: homepage: http://english.daralhayat.com/column/19-04-2003/Article-20030419-a55f0c22-c0a8-01fc-003b-040622db420f/story.html

Riiiight 19.Apr.2003 18:35

cw

And then let's look into the american media, which has consistently ignored US backed atrocities committed against palestinians for decades. Not only that, but let's look at how the American media shamelessly ignored the death and destruction among the Iraqi people, even as they pumped the fantastic "smart bombs" and other weapons used against Iraq. You know, the ones that are so accurate they actually "save" lives? Turns out, those weapons weren't so accurate after all. No, they actually bludgeoned, maimed, and murdered hundreds of thousands of Iraqis in the past two wars.

Hmmmm. Why, then, did the US media ignore this? Well, aside from the fact that they are pushing the US government agenda, it turns out that the US media is owned by the largest weapons contractors in the world. So while NBC, for example, was gushing about the sophistication and accuracy of the weapons used in Iraq, they were not exactly objective. All those glowing words were, in fact, a commercial for themelves. NBC is owned by GE, the very manufacturer of those weapons.

Go back a ways. Let's talk about the way the US media manipulated the American public during the Iran Contra scandal. Remember that? Remember how the US media lied along with the government about who the good guys were and who the bad guy were? If you don't remember, I suggest you do some reading.

Oh, there are SO many examples of US media lies, examples of the US media ignoring human rights violations perpetrated by its own country -- indeed, even its own products! We don't need to go far to find them. How about the way that everyone who was there on the streets of Portland the day the bombs began to fall on Iraq knows that the protesters were peaceful, and the police were violent, attacking aggressors. Yet the local media turned the story completely around. Fortunately, most people saw through this pathetic ploy. But not everyone.

Similarly, protests just like ours were going on all over the country. But did we hear much about that?

I don't think we need to go as far as the Arab world to find gross violations of ethics among media elites. I think it's ridiculous to assert that the media a world away needs to be investigated while ignoring the abuses and violations in our own airwaves and paperboxes.