color: SOME SOLDIER'S MOM: MSM Anti-war Bias - What Milbloggers Have Been Saying All Along!

Monday, October 17, 2005

MSM Anti-war Bias - What Milbloggers Have Been Saying All Along!

The Media Research Center says the coverage by ABC, NBC and CBS is biased against the war and the soldiers and doesn't tell the good news! I think I mighta heard that somewhere before...
From the MRC Executive Summary:
TV’s Bad News Brigade
ABC, CBS and NBC’s Defeatist Coverage of the War in Iraq
... are network reporters giving the public an inordinately gloomy portrait of the situation, as some critics charge? Are the positive accomplishments of U.S. soldiers and Iraq’s new democratic leaders being lost in a news agenda dominated by assassinations, car bombings and casualty reports?

The answer to both questions is: Yes.
This conclusion is based on a Media Research Center study of broadcast network news coverage of the Iraq war so far this year. MRC analysts reviewed all 1,388 Iraq stories broadcast on ABC’s World News Tonight, the CBS Evening News and NBC Nightly News from January 1 through September 30. (In 2006, the MRC will release a similar analysis of cable news coverage of Iraq.) Among the key findings:

■ Network coverage has been overwhelmingly pessimistic. More than half of all stories (848, or 61%) focused on negative topics or presented a pessimistic analysis of the situation, four times as many as featured U.S. or Iraqi achievements or offered an optimistic assessment (just 211 stories, or 15%).

■ News about the war has grown increasingly negative. In January and February, about a fifth of all network stories (21%) struck a hopeful note, while just over half presented a negative slant on the situation. By August and September, positive stories had fallen to a measly seven percent and the percentage of bad news stories swelled to 73 percent of all Iraq news, a ten-to-one disparity.

■ Terrorist attacks are the centerpiece of TV’s war news. Two out of every five network evening news stories (564) featured car bombings, assassinations, kidnappings or other attacks launched by the terrorists against the Iraqi people or coalition forces, more than any other topic.

■ Even coverage of the Iraqi political process has been negative. More stories (124) focused on shortcomings in Iraq’s political process — the danger of bloodshed during the January elections, political infighting among politicians, and fears that the new Iraqi constitution might spur more civil strife — than found optimism in the Iraqi people’s historic march to democracy (92 stories). One-third of those optimistic stories (32) appeared on just two nights — January 30 and 31, just after Iraq’s first successful elections.

■ Few stories focused on the heroism or generous actions of American soldiers. Just eight stories were devoted to recounting episodes of heroism or valor by U.S. troops, and another nine stories featured instances when soldiers reached out to help the Iraqi people. In contrast, 79 stories focused on allegations of combat mistakes or outright misconduct on the part of U.S. military personnel.
Here's the Full Text PDF Version of the report.
I can't wait to see the cable news study results -- those will be interesting (I'm betting the results will be about the same except for one cable network... )
(Hat tip to You Must Be Kidding)


At 10/17/2005 3:16 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

So basically you only want the media to print good news whatever the truth?

Two current examples: The media shouldn’t report the suspected fraud in the recent referendum. Nor the suspected deaths of women and children in the most recent air strikes?

At 10/17/2005 3:59 PM , Blogger Some Soldier's Mom said...

See, that's the problem with the liberal left... reading way more into it... No where in the post does it say anything about NOT reporting bad news... The point is to have FAIR AND NUETRAL reporting -- report it all not just what serves the anti-war bent. 61% negative and 15% positive? Hardly balanced. Hardly neutral.

As for the women and children killed, IF there actually were women and children killed, you must be naive or in denial: terrorists know no decency and quite regularly plant themselves where women and children are (have you so soon forgotten the car bombs that TARGETED the children... the teachers murdered in front of their students? They fire from ambulances, hospitals, schools and mosques. The death of INNOCENTS serves no one but the terrorists... and just a reminder that the claims are from terrorists ar Ramadi -- hardly a reliable source.

The book of terrorism tells them to exploit the media in the west and they seem to be doing just that -- and you are a prime example of it.

At 10/17/2005 4:14 PM , Blogger Call Me Grandma said...

You said that so well, SSM. I sure would not want to be on the other side of a debating table with you.
That is why I only watch Fox News.

At 10/17/2005 4:57 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...


A couple of points. Don’t assume that because someone doesn’t support this war they are either liberal or from the left. There are many current and ex military who are not onboard too. See, sometimes, when you have been on the inside you know how the game is played.

Do you read any history? Do a little research and name any insurgency that has been defeated by having guys drop 500 lb bombs from an F16 or equivalent.

And if there were women and children killed how does that put me in denial? You mean that you think it is ok to kill kids if they mixed in with the insurgents? Is that the way to win hearts and minds?

At 10/17/2005 5:11 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's always interesting to me how people with agendas change the subject when they don't have anything either intelligent or relevant to say. I don't believe that SSM's post was regarding whether the war was right or wrong, rather the unbalanced reporting going on in regards to the war. Whether you agree or disagree with the war, most of the media outlets are working their own agenda as opposed to reporting all the facts.

It's true that in war, mistakes are made, innocent people are killed. However, it is also true that our military is making great strides in Iraq every day. It can be seen in the faces of children who are having school supplies delivered from American troops. It can be seen in the faces of the men and women in Iraq at the voting polls, amazed that they actually might have a say so in their own government. It can be seen in the pictures of our soldiers delivering clothes, food, and shoes to families who were destitute under the old regime. I know, I see these pictures on a normal basis, taken from my husband's camera.

I don't think that anyone expects the media to stop reporting the negatives, only that they cover both sides of the coin evenly and show the positives that are happening every day as well. Whether, I agree or disagree with the war is irrelevant.

What is relevant is that the positives are under reported and ignored, while the negatives are shown over and over again on our TV screens. Whether anyone agrees with the war or not, the inequality in reporting is a mathematical fact, proven in numbers and percentages.

-A Very Proud 3BDE Wife

At 10/17/2005 5:59 PM , Blogger Melinda said...

Thanks for linking to the article, SSM. It will make a great point of discussion in my media class this semester.

Also, wonderful responses from you as well as a very proud 3BDE Wife (btw, we're proud of YOU) to Anonymous.

My mother always taught me that if your thoughts are genuine and your motives pure, you should be able to sign your name to anything. She also suggested considering the source when listening to any sort of criticism. Combine those two and I think you can tell how I would judge an argument made "anonymously" by anyone.

At 10/17/2005 7:50 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...


So you are saying that everyone who posts anonymously on the internet doesn’t have ‘pure’ thoughts or ‘genuine’ motives.

I am sure all the posters at LGF, Red State org and all the rest will agree with you.

At 10/18/2005 2:06 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous... SSM posted about the poor job the MSM is doing to convey a balanced reporting of the war in Iraq. They've failed. I don't see anything here about not reporting events.

It's not an insurgency. Insurgencies target government -- not the civilian populace. These are terrorists terrorizing the Iraqi people for the sole purpose of political coersion. They don't want a representative government (too late!) and they don't want a constitution that doesn't give them control (too late!) It's not about religion. It's about power.

We might not be able to get all of the terrorists with 500 pounders dropped from F/16's, but getting as many as we can that way works for me... Placating hearts and minds stops for me at the bloody door of a Bradley. I'm certain -- in both my heart and mind -- that any killing of women and children or any innocent Iraqi -- IF in fact they were killed by Coalition Forces -- was purely accidental. I'm also certain that it was not Coalition forces that would put them in harm's way. You see, sometimes, when you have been on the inside you know how the game is played.

-- SSG DEL, WIA, Baqubah, OIF3

At 10/18/2005 3:19 AM , Blogger Stacy said...

Great article SSM. Hope Noah is doing better.

At 10/18/2005 10:20 AM , Blogger Melinda said...

No, Anonymous...that's not what I meant at all. Funny how one can read so deeply in to some things & completely miss the points on others when it is convenient to him/her. And, I find it interesting that you're making the assumption that because I don't agree with you, I'm somehow a red-stater...neat how that works.

What I meant was that in my experience, those who flit around the internet posting anonymously do not have the balls to sign their names to things. Sometimes they can't because of their positions in certain organizations, etc., and I recognize that, but by and large, anyone who has ever posted anonymously does so because they like to insulate themselves from whatever fallout they think their comments will produce.


At 10/19/2005 6:51 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

So you are saying that everyone who posts anonymously on the internet doesn’t have ‘pure’ thoughts or ‘genuine’ motives.

Ah, the attempt to divert criticism against your own antics by trying to drag "everyone" into it. Gosh, never seen anonymous trolls try THAT tactic before. Oh wait, it's one of the classics. Oops.

Careful with those strawmen, nonny. The UN Human Rights Commission might write you a stern warning letter about genocide in Strawmania.

Melissa: You are being clearer, though I suspect your dance partner will deliberately not acknowledge it.


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