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U.S. television networks have given the public a sanitized, largely bloodless view of the war in Iraq, an academic authority on communications writes.
“The contrast between what Americans saw on the news and what European and pan-Arab audiences saw is striking. Foreign news bureaus showed far more blood and gore than American stations showed. The foreign media were delivering audiences the true face of the war,” Michelle Pulaski, an assistant professor at Pace University, New York.
Loss of objectivity could also be seen in the wave of patriotism that swept through media coverage, Pulaski wrote, including reporters with flags on their lapels and stars and stripes waving in the background. MSNBC, she noted, displayed a wall of heroes entitled “America’s Bravest” which contained photos of loved ones overseas sent by viewers. “This wave of patriotism, apparent after the September 11th attacks, led to a sanitized and biased version of the war coverage.”