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Truth Alert!!!

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  • Truth Alert!!!

    Great article. Great point.


    Coverage of Military Tsunami Response Betrays Media Bias
    By Scott Hogenson Executive Editor
    January 07, 2005

    A funny thing happened in Hong Kong while UN Undersecretary for Human Services Jan Egeland was musing on wealthier nations being "stingy" in their initial response to the Indian Ocean tidal wave that washed over gigantic chunks of Southern and Southeast Asia.

    While this UN bureaucrat was busy berating the more developed and affluent nations of the world, thousands of citizens from one such nation were interrupting their long-made plans to provide what would become the world's first response to the cataclysm.

    That response came from the American aircraft carrier U.S.S. Abraham Lincoln and elements of the battle group sailing with her. They were enjoying a bit of well-earned Christmas liberty in Hong Kong when the 9.0 earthquake and ensuing tsunami struck on December 26.

    Within 48 hours of the disaster, the Lincoln and other U.S. warships had received their orders, called back their crews from shore leave, taken on whatever supplies they could and weighed anchor for the hardest hit areas to begin the relief effort. Around the same time, other ships and aircraft were being dispatched from the American naval facility on Diego Garcia in the heart of the Indian Ocean.

    All this military power - most notably the efforts of 13,000 sailors, soldiers, marines and airmen - isn't cheap, and the Pentagon Thursday noted that the American military role in the humanitarian effort adds up to about $6 million a day. Over the course of the past week, that represents a greater relief effort than what's been pledged by any number of sovereign nations including Saudi Arabia.

    To the credit of the media, this humanitarian response by our military has not gone un-noticed. The men and women who are carrying out this work represent the very best of the United States to the entire world and it is right the news media take note of this.

    So why is it the media have been much less interested in the equally important humanitarian work carried out every day by our troops in Iraq for the past year and a half?

    Since the spring of 2003, American forces have been laboring under the most dangerous circumstances imaginable to help rebuild Iraq. Even as fighting was taking place mere kilometers away from them, American and allied troops were working to restore electrical power, rebuild schools and hospitals, deliver potable water and medicine, and perform any number of other vitally important jobs.

    American humanitarian efforts in Iraq have been Herculean, yet have been barely touched on by the establishment media, which prefers instead to focus on rare foibles by individual soldiers, death tolls and perceived policy failures.

    This disparity of news coverage suggests the political agenda of the liberal media in America. The humanitarian aspects of our military in response to a random geological disaster are favorably noted, but similar efforts over a far longer period of time in conjunction with a war against tyranny and terror are virtually ignored.

    What the media are trying to do, in essence, is define for us what is and is not an appropriate use of American military force. When we see images of our troops doing good in the world, Americans largely support that effort, which is likely one element driving the positive news coverage regarding the tsunami relief effort.

    It's just as likely an element driving the virtual absence of reporting on the good works of our troops in Iraq. The media are reluctant to report on these efforts knowing that doing so would likely increase support for the ongoing war there.

    The bottom line is the media flexing its muscle as a means of political manipulation. While the media's target of such manipulation is President Bush, his policies on Iraq and the war on terror, the casualties come not from the White House but the men and women in arms and their families.

    These are the people bearing the burden of risk and labor and separation involved in rebuilding Iraq, yet they receive scant credit in the news media, which essentially translates into even less credit by the American people at large. In their attempt to undermine U.S. foreign policy, the establishment media succeed in disparaging the work and sacrifice of our troops in Iraq.

    Talk about stingy.

    Scott Hogenson is executive editor of Cybercast News Service.

  • #2
    Re: Truth Alert!!!

    Very nice. Our military is great, and so are its personnel. The same can be said for our country.

    Let's just hope we don't see photographs surface in the middle of 2007 showing pyramids of emaciated tsunami victims with US military personnel showing "thumbs up" in the background. Victims on leashes would be bad press, too.

    Perhaps this will prove a yang to the yin of bad press we've gotten lately.
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    • #3
      Re: Truth Alert!!!

      Because permission was saught to send western military to Asia, but our military in Iraq is unwelcomed by a large (majority/minority?) of the Iraqi population.

      The British government was embarassed last week when Blair declaired that we were sending some Gurkhas to Indonesia and Indonesia said "thanks but no thanks" although they accepted the offer of some helicopters and crew.

      Here's the point: They said no so we are not sending the Gurkhas. It's not media bias.

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      • #4
        Re: Truth Alert!!!

        The article is about how the media chooses to cover or not to cover the humanitarian work our troops do. It has little or nothing to do with the local population's appreciation of that work. But you make a good point: if the locals start killing our troops in Indonesia, I suspect that the humanitarian coverage will slide.




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