The media’s coverage of the war in Iraq has reached a new dimension: Not only are broadcast media conveying images of Baghdad around the clock, reporters are riding along with soldiers on the front lines, placing their lives at high risk for the sake of gathering information faster than a competing news agency.
The public needs to see all sides of war in order to have a holistic conception of it. It is the media’s job to expose the damage of war, however gruesome or disturbing it may be, because it is the truth. It is the media’s job to make sure the public knows as much as can be known, not to shelter them from details.
Sadly, the coverage of the war in Iraq, especially in the broadcast media thus far, has been especially biased and devoid of credibility. It has become a joke.
The original motive behind the war with Iraq was to disarm Saddam Hussein. But since the war began, the Bush administration has kept its mouth shut about Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction, twisting the war’s goals to include the “liberation” of the Iraqi people, and not just disarmament. Instead of naming the war “Operation Disarm Iraq,” Bush coined the more pleasant, highly patriotic “Operation Iraqi Freedom” phrase instead. Ever since, the media has followed Bush like a poodle on a leash, serving as his mouthpiece.
Instead of saying they are covering the “war in Iraq” or the “conflict in Iraq,” many reporters have stared into the cameras, saying they are covering “Iraq’s liberation.” It’s one thing for the media to get information from the Bush administration and U.S. military personnel, but it’s called bias when the media use Bush’s words verbatim to “objectively” cover the war.
The media must be critical and question the Bush administration just as willingly as they echo their rhetoric, not because the media are anti-Bush, but because the media are the only tool the public has to access information from its leadership.
University Wire — U. California – Los Angeles