TwitterFacebook

Harvard: How the Media Partnered With Hezbollah

• Views: 2,776

During Israel’s war against Hizballah, at LGF we were continually outraged by the media’s uncritical promulgation of terrorist propaganda, and their overwhelming bias against Israel. The barrage of staged and manipulated disinformation culminated in the infamous Adnan Hajj fauxtography incident; and it can be argued that the culture of tacit cooperation with terrorists was at least partly responsible for that stunning case of phony news.

How could Reuters’ experienced editors miss a fake picture that was so bleeding obvious, at every step of the way toward publication? Answer: because they just didn’t care.

It’s interesting that in an age of obsessive media focus on scandals, no wire service or newspaper has ever followed up on that story in any real way. Adnan Hajj seemed to simply vanish off the face of the earth; no interviews, no photos of him, no investigations, just one statement—reported by Reuters—in which he claimed his fakery was to “remove dust,” then poof! Adnan who?

For blowing the whistle on Hizballah’s manipulation of Reuters, LGF was smeared by numerous leftists; the diversionary tactics ranged from personal attacks to attempts to minimize the importance of the faked photos.

Now the Harvard Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy, hardly a bastion of neocon wingnut thinking, has issued a paper that absolutely skewers the media for their outrageously biased and terrorist-enabling behavior. Maybe this will be a little harder for them to ignore: How the Media Partnered With Hezbollah: Harvard’s Cautionary Report.

While the war between Israel and Hezbollah raged in Lebanon and Israel last summer, it became clear that media coverage had itself started to play an important role in determining the ultimate outcome of that war. It seemed clear that news coverage would affect the course of the conflict. And it quickly transpired that Hezbollah would become the beneficiary of the media’s manipulation.

A close examination of the media’s role during the 2006 Israel-Hezbollah war in Lebanon comes now from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government, in an analysis of the war published in a paper whose subtitle should give pause to journalists covering international conflict: “The Israeli-Hezbollah War of 2006: The Media as a Weapon in Asymmetrical Conflict.” Bernard Kalb [note: actually, it’s Marvin Kalb. —ed.], of Harvard’s Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy, methodically traces the transformation of the media “from objective observer to fiery advocate.” Kalb painstakingly details how Hezbollah exercised absolute control over how journalists portrayed its side of the conflict, while Israel became “victimized by its own openness.”

The lessons from the Harvard paper go well beyond historic analysis. Kalb’s thoroughly and persuasively documented case points to the challenges to journalists in future “asymmetrical” conflicts in which a radical militia provides access only to journalists agreeing to the strictest of rules.

Journalists did Hezbollah’s work, offering little resistance to the Islamic militia’s effort to portray itself as an idealistic and heroic army of the people, facing an aggressive and ruthless enemy. With Hezbollah’s unchallenged control of journalists’ access within its territory, it managed to almost completely eliminate from the narrative crucial facts, such as the fact that it deliberately fired its weapons from deep within civilian population centers, counting on Israeli forces to have no choice but defend themselves by targeting rocket launchers where they stood. Hezbollah’s strong support from Syria and Iran — including the provision of deadly weapons — faded in the coverage, as the conflict increasingly became portrayed as pitting one powerful army against a band of heroic defenders of a civilian population.

Gradually lost in the coverage was the fact that the war began when Hezbollah infiltrated Israel, kidnapping two of its soldiers (still held to this day) and killing eight Israelis. Despite the undisputed fact that Hezbollah triggered the war, Israel was painted as the aggressor, as images of the war overtook the context.

UPDATE at 4/25/07 10:20:33 am:

Here’s the full report, in PDF form.

^ back to top ^

TwitterFacebook

Turn off all ads for a full year by subscribing!
For about 33 cents a day (per month) or 22 cents a day (per year), our subscription option turns off all advertisements at LGF!
Read more...

► LGF Headlines

  • Loading...

► Tweeted Articles

  • Loading...

► Tweeted Pages

  • Loading...

► Top 10 Comments

  • Loading...

► Bottom Comments

  • Loading...

► Recent Comments

  • Loading...

► Tools/Info

► Tag Cloud

► Contact

You must have Javascript enabled to use the contact form.
Your email:

Subject:

Message:


Messages may be published unless you request otherwise.
Tech Note:
Using the Contact Form
LGF Pages

This button leads to the main index of LGF Pages, our user-submitted articles. You can post your own LGF Pages simply by registering a free account with us.

Create a Page

This is the LGF Pages posting bookmarklet. To use it, drag this button to your browser's bookmark bar, and title it 'LGF Pages' (or whatever you like). Then browse to a site you want to post, select some text on the page to use for a quote, click the bookmarklet, and the Pages posting window will appear with the title, text, and any embedded video or audio files already filled in, ready to go.

Or... you can just click this button to open the Pages posting window right away.

Last updated: 2014-03-07 2:19 pm PST

LGF User's Guide
Recent Pages
Rightwingconspirator
Human Caused Extinctions Far Worse Than Thought
if we don't respect our environment it will turn on us. The gravity of the world's current extinction rate becomes clearer upon knowing what it was before people came along. A new estimate finds that species die off as much ...

41 minutes ago
Views: 34 • Comments: 0
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 0
Randall Gross
Future of Film: Special Report
Also worthy of note among Film's problems: the mass migration of serious adult drama to Television. The movie industry is facing a crisis: Seduced by mobile phones and video games, younger audiences are drifting away. This year, domestic box office, ...

52 minutes ago
Views: 50 • Comments: 0
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 0
Hyped Up On Ganja
Lindsay Lohan reveals she’s voting for Mitt Romney because ‘employment is really important’
Asked to expound on her comment, Miss Lohan giggled, and replied "Wingnut Mormons are so $$#@#$ hawt and junk" / But this was not the first time the fledgling political pundit has jumped into the presidential twitter fray. In early ...

22 hours, 19 minutes ago
Views: 193 • Comments: 0
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 0
Souliren
Natalie MacMaster
1 day, 20 hours ago
Views: 123 • Comments: 1
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 1
The War TARDIS
Doctor Who “Into the Dalek” Open Thread
This episode will echo old Dalek episodes, both with a bit of a twist. Also, Clara will be finding someone, as she seems to be moving from her feelings of the 11th. But, this for talking.

2 days, 21 hours ago
Views: 294 • Comments: 41
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 5
FemNaziBitch
Roger Goodell: ‘I Didn’t Get It Right.’ -NFL TAKES A NEW STANCE DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell admits he was wrong on the Ray Rice decision, and Goodell took an important step Thursday towards showing the league is serious about cracking down on domestic violence as well as sexual assault. In a ...

4 days, 3 hours ago
Views: 234 • Comments: 1
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 3
sagehen
Doctor Who Spoiler Thread
For those who want to post immediately... live... without having to hide spoilers behind the button.

1 week, 2 days ago
Views: 708 • Comments: 99
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 6
EiMitch
Escapist: Maniac Cop
escapistmagazine.com Link broken? The gist is that this is an impressively sarcastic review of an old slasher flick based on the "unrealistic" premise of a cop abusing his power to murder people.

1 week, 3 days ago
Views: 531 • Comments: 1
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 1
CriticalDragon1177
Io9 - Everything You Need To Know About Lemuria, The Lost Continent Of Lemurs
Esther Inglis-Arkell talks about the weirdest lost continent myth, I've ever heard. Its the only one I know of that ever included giant telepathic lemurs. No seriously! In 1858 a young zoologist, playing around with an idea, came up with ...

1 week, 4 days ago
Views: 739 • Comments: 4
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 7
 Frank says:

The bassoon is one of my favorite instruments. It has the medieval aroma -- like the days when everything used to sound like that. Some people crave baseball -- I find this unfathomable -- but I can easily understand why a person could get excited about playing a bassoon.