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Media Coverage of Iraq

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Pentagon Propaganda Program Orders Soldiers to Promote Iraq War While Home on Leave (December 29, 2005)

Over the holiday season, the Pentagon ordered military personnel returning to the US from Iraq to actively seek out media interviews. By giving soldiers talking points and interview guidelines, the Pentagon's propaganda campaign aimed to positively manipulate domestic public opinion of the US occupation of Iraq. To maintain complicity, the US military has fined or demoted soldiers who speak out against the occupation. (Capitol Hill Blue)

Planted PR Stories Not News to Military (December 18, 2005)

The US military hired the Lincoln Group, a Washington-based public relations firm, to manipulate Iraqi public opinion in favor of the US. The Lincoln Group's covert program, worth millions of dollars, included various media activities designed to appear as independent journalism rather than US propaganda. According to former Lincoln Group employees, however, US military officials were well aware that the Lincoln Group paid Iraqi newspapers to print pro-US articles and editorials, negating any possibility of "plausible deniability." (Los Angeles Times)

Did Bush Really Want to Bomb Al Jazeera? (November 30, 2005)

The UK refuses to release more information on whether US President George Bush and UK Prime Minister Tony Blair actually discussed bombing the Arab TV network Al Jazeera in April 2004, as claimed by two British officials and reported in the British press. Nonetheless, there is cause for concern, given earlier US bombings of Al Jazeera offices and the Bush administration's disdain for Al Jazeera's unfettered coverage of the US occupation of Iraq. The day before Bush and Blair's 2004 meeting, US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld publicly condemned Al Jazeera as "vicious, inaccurate and inexcusable." (The Nation)

US Military Covertly Pays to Run Stories in Iraqi Press (November 30, 2005)

As part of an "information offensive," the US military secretly pays Iraqi newspapers to print stories written by US troops. The articles, which promote the US image and objectives, mask any connection to the US military and are presented as though written by independent journalists. The military's dissemination of propaganda and misleading information, some officials protest, severely contradicts Washington's stated goal of promoting democracy in Iraq and undermines transparency and accuracy within Iraqi journalism. (Los Angeles Times)

Paper Says Bush Talked of Bombing Arab TV Network (November 23, 2005)

Leaked British intelligence documents reveal that US President George Bush and UK Prime Minister Tony Blair discussed the possibility of bombing the headquarters of Arab satellite news network Al-Jazeera. Though US officials have called the assertion "outlandish," the arrest of two British officials for making a "damaging disclosure" gives credence to the possibility that the discussion took place. If so, previous US attacks on Al-Jazeera offices in Afghanistan and Iraq, which were explained as mistakes, would come into question. (Washington Post)

The Media Are Minimising US and British War Crimes in Iraq (November 8, 2005)

The mainstream media's reporting of Iraqi civilian casualties has been both inaccurate and underreported. While the US and UK only announce the death of "terrorists" and "insurgents," groups such as the Lancet and Iraq Body Count keep detailed records of the total Iraqi death toll. Most journalists have chosen not to follow these reports, opting to stick with the official US and UK line instead. (Guardian)

Robert Fisk: War Is the "Total Failure of the Human Spirit" (October 20, 2005)

Journalist Robert Fisk discusses the current situation in Iraq in this powerful interview with Amy Goodman of Democracy Now!. Fisk addresses the implications of an ideological war based on foreign occupation, the false reality of "embedded" journalists, and the lack of accurate reporting available to the public.

Reuters Says US Troops Obstruct Reporting of Iraq (September 28, 2005)

The US military has had a chilling effect on media reporting in Iraq, preventing more accurate and complete coverage from reaching the public. While US forces have admitted to killing three Reuters journalists, many more journalists have been killed or detained without charges. In response to a situation he said was "spiraling out of control," ReutersGlobal Managing Editor David Schlesinger has openly requested that US officials establish better guidelines for protecting journalists.

Reuters Calls for Release of Iraqi Cameraman (August 24, 2005)

The US military has detained a Reuters cameraman in Iraq since August 8, 2005, but officials refuse to say why they have arrested him or where they are holding him. The article notes that "Reuters and other media organizations in Iraq have been wrongly accused in the past by US forces of having prior information of insurgent attacks." In addition, it mentions that US troops have previously killed two Reuters cameramen. Troops may also have shot a third cameraman, but the military refused to inquire into the matter. (Reuters)

CNN Makes News with WMD Special, but Press Deserves Blame, Too (August 19, 2005)

This article discusses a CNN documentary about the US government's falsely claimed that Iraq was building weapons of mass destruction. The article accuses the US media of assisting in the government's deception: it "acted like a jury that is ready, willing and (in this case) able to deliver a verdict— after the prosecution has spoken and before anyone else is heard or the evidence studied." The article examines the uncritical press response to Colin Powell's 2003 speech to the United Nations, where he charged that Iraq was hiding a nuclear weapons program. (Editor & Publisher)

Why Few Graphic Images from Iraq Make it to US Papers (July 18, 2005)

This Editor and Publisherarticle discusses why so few US newspapers print photographs of the Iraq War's dead and wounded. According to photojournalists, military officials often ask embedded photographers not to publish, or to delay publishing, pictures of the violence. Others say that news editors are reluctant to upset their readers. Yet another thinks editors display a double standard: "There's less chance of publishing a mortally wounded American on the cover than that of an Afghani or Iraqi."

To Live and Die in Iraq (July 11, 2005)

James Wolcott charges that the US media "would be much happier if Iraq would resolve itself or, better yet, go away." He notes in particular that pictures of Iraqi suffering almost never appear in US newspapers or on television. The press's timidity in showing the daily carnage from Iraq, he argues, leads to ignorance and apathy among US citizens. (Vanity Fair)

The Ghost at Gleneagles (July 11, 2005)

In the media frenzy surrounding the Group of Eight (G8) summit, something has been overlooked: the two men at the heart of it are the ones responsible for Fallujah and Abu Ghraib. This article from the New Statesmanexamines the "mass distraction by the media," which has not reported the World Tribunal on Iraq hearings in Istanbul, but has devoured every photo opportunity and promise of poverty relief surrounding the G8 summit.

War? What War? (June 29, 2005)

The 9/11 terror attacks in the US led to "near-total repression" in terms of media coverage of the Iraq war, says this Salonarticle. The author focuses on blaming Fox News for its shoddy coverage of the war, warning that the situation "calls for seriousness, analysis and reflection – in a word, for respect" that should manifest itself through increased media action and balanced reporting.

Journalists Call for Greater Freedom (June 16, 2005)

According to the independent Iraqi National Communication and Media Commission (INCMC), 29 journalists have been killed since the 2003 invasion and 56 others have been kidnapped. In addition, even though press freedom in Iraq has improved since Saddam Hussein's regime, the president of the Organization for the Defense of Journalists Rights (ODJR) says "dozens of journalists have been censored, especially those that show the reality and bad action taken by security forces in the country." (Integrated Regional Information Networks)

News Media Give Overlooked Memo on Iraq Second Glance (June 16, 2005)

Why did the US media take so long to notice the Downing Street Memo? This Washington Postpiece takes a look at the decisions made by US news outlets to not report it, citing reasons such as "the memo was old, that the US mobilization for war was widely reported at the time, that there was an initial distrust of a British press report." But other organizations, such as the Associate Press and National Public Radio, have admitted mistakes in how they covered the memo. AP's international editor said in a statement: "There is no question AP dropped the ball in not picking up on the Downing Street memo sooner."

Iraq News Is Bleak, Even for Pentagon's "Early Bird" (June 13, 2005)

This Inter Press Servicepiece looks at the resurgence of negative Iraq-related stories in the Pentagon's internal "Early Bird" news file. Iraq news, which "had faded to the inside pages after the Jan. 30 elections and well into the spring," is making a comeback, reflecting a growing recognition of the rapidly deteriorating situation in the country.

British Memo Reopens War Claim (May 17, 2005)

The Chicago Tribuneexamines the lack of attention the "Downing Street Memo" has gotten in the US. The memo, which reveals that the US "fixed" intelligence to fits its intention of invading Iraq, has gone widely unreported in the US mainstream media. The authors note that "there appears to be little appetite for reopening the question of why the US went to war." The White House, meanwhile, categorically denies the memo's claims.

CPJ Calls on US, Iraqi Authorities to Explain Journalist Detentions (May 12, 2005)

The Committee to Protect Journalistsexpresses "deep concern" about the detention of at least eight Iraqi journalists by US and Iraqi forces. The US has not provided any justification for detaining the journalists other than saying they pose a "security risk to the Iraqi people and coalition forces." US military officials have repeatedly voiced concerns that Iraqi journalists collaborate with insurgents, but have produced no evidence to support these claims.

Smoking Gun Memo? (May 10, 2005)

The US media has virtually ignored an incriminating memo revealed by the London Times, which shows that US President George W. Bush "had made up his mind to take military action" against Iraq in July of 2002, and that "facts were being fixed around the policy" in Washington. The lack of news coverage leads one US columnist to wonder: "Are Americans so jaded about the deceptions perpetrated by our own government to lead us into war [...] that we are no longer interested in fresh and damning evidence of those lies?" (Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting)

The War in Iraq: The Most Deadly One for the Media Since Vietnam (May 3, 2005)

This Reporters Without Bordersbriefing describes the dire circumstances journalists face in Iraq, where 56 reporters and media assistants have been killed since the the US invasion in 2003. In comparison, the Vietnam war claimed the lives of 63 journalists over a period of 20 years. Of the journalists killed in Iraq, 71 percent died in shootings, and 93 percent were not embedded in US or British military units.

They Shoot Journalists, Don't They? (April 28, 2005)

An investigation into the shooting that injured an Italian journalist and killed the intelligence agent accompanying her near Baghdad has cleared US soldiers of any wrongdoing, according to a leaked report. Journalist Giuliana Sgrena was traveling in a car after intelligence agent Nicola Calipari had negotiated her release from militant custody when US troops opened fire without warning. (Asia Times)

On the Job from All Sides (March/April 2005)

Arab journalists face many pressures when trying to report from Iraq. US troops have shot at and sometimes killed them, insurgents have threatened them, and the US-installed government of Ayad Allawi occasionally detained and threatened them. The Allawi government also banned al-Jazeera from working within Iraq for allegedly inciting violence. Arab journalists have retreated from this threatening environment, and coverage of Iraq suffers as a result. (Columbia Journalism Review)

Dead Messengers: How the US Military Threatens Journalists (March 8, 2005)

While other journalists and commentators have speculated about the degree to which US forces target journalists, BBC's Nik Gowing has spent over two years gathering specific evidence. He concludes that because the military does not want journalists in war zones, they will make it very uncomfortable for independent media to work, if not intentionally attack them. For example, US forces do not discriminate between media satellite uplinks and "enemy" communications, placing all non-embedded journalists using such technology in the category of "legitimate targets." (truthout)

Independent Press Was a Target in Iraq (February 28, 2005)

The US has threatened, misinformed, and even targeted independent journalists working in Iraq. Although the Pentagon vehemently denies any such allegations, former CNN and ABC producer Danny Schechter says that these actions represented a broad "strategy to keep the media in line." Backing up his claims, the author cites several examples of US forces targeting clearly-identified members of the press. (Television Week)

Media Held Guilty of Deception (February 14, 2005)

The World Tribunal on Iraq (WTI), an "international peoples initiative seeking the truth about the war and occupation," accused western corporate media of selectively suppressing information as well as "marginalising and endangering independent journalists." Witnesses testified about media disinformation during the siege of Fallujah and condemned "the active complicity of media in crimes that [...] are being committed on a daily basis against the people in Iraq." (Inter Press Service)


The War on Fog (December 20, 2004)

Despite its lack of media experience, California-based Science Applications International Corporation received a no-bid contract to run the Iraqi Media Network in March 2003. In response to critics' complaints that the network was biased and aired propaganda, Washington re-awarded the contract to Republican donor Harris Corporation, which intends to "quell unrest, win the minds of people and combat anti-American propaganda from other sources." (AlertNet)

Radio Station to Help Iraqis Decide (December 16, 2004)

The German government is funding a special radio program called Election Radio, which a number of independent Iraqi radio stations will broadcast. Twenty Iraqi journalists have received training from Western journalists in Amman. The program aims to "help Iraqis participate fully in the election." (BBC)

Balance in the Service of Falsehood (December 15, 2004)

Publications like the Guardian and the Independent, which otherwise "set the boundaries of permissible dissent," have received harsh criticism for helping to "create a disaster" in Iraq. David Edwards and David Cromwell argue that liberal publications did not fail to assume their responsibility, but rather corporate-dominated media are incompatible with "balanced professional journalism." (Guardian)

Kurdish Media after the War (December 2004)

Despite increasing opportunities for nonpartisan journalism in Iraqi Kurdistan, party politics still dominate media outlets in the region. Kurdistan's main political parties finance local broadcasting and printed news, and hesitate to criticize neighboring countries such as Turkey and Iran or publish anything potentially harmful to Kurdish-US relations. Kurdish independent media veer toward sensationalism and do not provide an alternative to the "red carpet style" journalism prevalent in Kurdistan's main publications. (Arab Reform Bulletin)

A Voluntary Tic in Media Coverage of Iraq (November 24, 2004)

US media outlets routinely deceive their audience by only labeling those in favor of the US occupation "Iraqi forces," sending out a message that Iraqi combatants opposed to the Iraq war are not "actual Iraqis worthy of the name." Such rhetoric conceals the fact that the US is at war with a people it claims to be liberating. (truthout)

New York Times Rewrites Fallujah History (November 16, 2004)

Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting(FAIR) charges the New York Times with maintaining a double standard in its accounts of civilian deaths in the US attack on Fallujah. The paper repeatedly dismissed reports of "large civilian casualties" as "unconfirmed," but in the run-up to the offensive the Times informed its readers that "70 percent to 90 percent of civilians had fled." In its estimates of civilian deaths, FAIR says, "the Times has signed up on the side of the Pentagon."

The Unthinkable Becomes Normal (November 15, 2004)

Mainstream media trivialize atrocities such as the slaughter in Fallujah by describing attacks on houses, mosques and innocent civilians as "successful operations against insurgents." John Pilger warns that we must not let the media "normalize the unthinkable," and that we should question the hidden agendas of "democratic governments." (New Statesman)

Keep Government Line on Falluja, Iraq Media Body Says (November 11, 2004)

Iraq's Media High Commission, set up by the Coalition Provisional Authority to "deter state meddling after decades of strict control under Saddam Hussein," has warned news agencies that coverage of the attack on Fallujah should concur with the Iraqi Interim Government's position. If media bodies do not comply, the Commission will take "legal measures to guarantee higher national interests." (Reuters)

From Florida to Fallujah: What the News Coverage Covers Up (November 9, 2004)

The US administration has a tight hold on the media and its coverage of the fight for Fallujah. The US-controlled broadcasters' narrative deceives its audience and focuses solely on "our boys." With the help of one-sided coverage as well as a lack of analysis, Washington has generated wide support for its imperialist agenda. (

Bloggers Cut Through Fog of War (October 31, 2004)

Soldiers and civilians in Iraq have exposed international audiences to alternative views on the war with the help of personal weblogs or blogs. Weblogs provide first-hand accounts, can "amplify points made by mainstream reporters" and could be considered "the new open-source method of fact-checking." (YaleGlobal)

Media in Iraq See Through a Shrinking Window (October 27, 2004)

Iraq has become the deadliest country in the world for Western as well as Iraqi journalists. Since the fall of Saddam Hussein, the country has witnessed a huge increase in media outlets. But journalists and photographers complain that the US and terrorist forces prevent them from doing their job and conclude that the media face the same repressive measures as they did under Saddam. (Christian Science Monitor)

Reimposing Controls on the Iraqi Press (October 9, 2004)

Iraqi Interim Prime Minister Iyad Allawi has set up the Higher Media Council, an agency that will control and restrict media activity in the country. The agency bears a worrying resemblance to Saddam Hussein's Ministry of Information and will certainly not contribute to free and democratic elections in January 2005. (International Herald Tribune)

The Story That Didn't Run (September 22, 2004)

US television network CBS chose not to broadcast a story on forged US government documents, which served as justification to go to war in Iraq, but rather to air a piece on President Bush's National Guard service record. Not only did the decision cause controversy over the reliability of the National Guard story, it also wasted the opportunity to inform the public about forged US government documents purporting to show Iraqi efforts to purchase uranium. (Newsweek)

Your Media Is Killing You (September 21, 2004)

To serve the interest of corporate ownership, mainstream television news media have grossly misinformed and misled US citizens. The Pentagon's hold on the media has transformed news organizations into a vehicle for propaganda. (truthout)

Unfettered Media Denies Being Biased (September 17, 2004)

Since the fall of Saddam Hussein in May 2003 the Iraqi media business has grown exponentially. But political parties and groups own many of the publications, prompting US and Iraqi officials to criticize Iraqi media for its biased views, which, they allege, have provoked violence. (Inter Press Service)

Blair's World of 'Lies and Bullying' (August 29, 2004)

In his autobiography, Inside Story, former Director General of the BBC Greg Dyke describes how British Prime Minister Tony Blair and Downing Street officials exerted tremendous pressure on former BBC Chairman Gavyn Davies and himself, trying to force the network to "change its tone" on its Iraq War coverage. Dyke also accuses Blair of allowing officials "to produce 'mountains of untruth' in two dossiers published by the government to justify going to war." (Observer)

War? What War? (August 12, 2004)

On May 26, 2004, the New York Times made a "mea culpa" about its reporting on the Iraq war and occupation, with other media outlets following suit. The admission of "questionable" reporting reflected not only on the New York Times, but more-so on other mainstream news outlets throughout the US. With no end to the occupation of Iraq in sight, has the media changed its reporting approach towards the war? (

Al-Jazeera Vows to Defy Iraq Ban (August 7, 2004)

Iraq's Interim Government closed the Iraqi offices of Arab television station Al-Jazeera for one month, accusing it of inciting violence. Al-Jazeera rebuffed the claims, arguing that the censure was "contrary to pledges made by the Interim Iraqi Government to start a new era of free speech and openness." (al-Jazeera)

Why the Press Failed (July 16, 2004)

The author argues that the main-stream media failed at its primary responsibility to act as the independent "watchdog" over the US government and government institutions. The media never seriously investigated the Bush administration's rationales for war, and never took into account the myriad of voices in the on-line, alternative, and world press that sought to do so. (Tom Dispatch)

The Baghdad Follies (June 16, 2004)

Journalists find Iraq very difficult to cover. Constant violence confines reporters, especially those from the US, to the relative safety of heavily guarded hotels and compounds. Without access to ordinary Iraqis, journalists confine themselves to working their cell phones, scanning news wires, and interviewing officials in Baghdad's heavily-fortified "Green Zone." In the words of one AP reporter, "we live in a bubble." (Rolling Stone)

The Times and Iraq (May 26, 2004)

In a sensational letter from the editors, the New York Timesmakes a mea culpa about its reporting on the Iraq war and occupation. The paper acknowledged that its journalists should have been more aggressive in questioning the information that was "controversial then, and seems questionable now, was insufficiently qualified or allowed to stand unchallenged."

Independent Journalism Under Occupation in Iraq (April 3, 2004)

Dahr Jamail, a freelance journalist in Iraq, criticizes the Western media's lack of objectivity and that numerous disparities exist between stories of "what is really occurring on the ground and what the corporate media chooses to report." (ZNet)

Why the Media Owe You an Apology on Iraq (March 28, 2004)

Is the media guilty of towing the White House line on the threat Iraq posed before the US-led invasion in March 2003? This article contends that media reports lacked impartiality, arguing that "too little critical examination of the way officials framed the events, issues, threats, and policy options" swayed public opinion in favor of war. (Free Lance-Star)

Gaffes and Gullibility: NY Times Gets it Wrong (February 28, 2004)

A 1920 statement by US press critics and foreign policy analysts Lippman and Merz, characterized media reporting of the "imminent end" of the Bolshevik Revolution saying journalists "were performing the supreme duty in a democracy of supplying the information on which public opinion feeds." With prewar and postwar assertions of Iraq's WMDs capabilities appearing unfounded, can the same be said today? (Inter Press Service)

Information Warfare or Yesterday's News? (January 6, 2004)

Two months before the Iraq war, the Pentagon hired a California-based multinational company to plan a new Iraqi media outlet for the period after Saddam Hussein. Yet this "independent" station's only funding comes from the US military. Unsurprisingly, critics claim that the radio and TV station has become an "irrelevant mouthpiece for CPA propaganda and managed news." (CorpWatch)


No Freedom without Free Press (December 2, 2003)

The US attributes the lack of democracy and "freedom" in the Arabic world to the absence of free media. Still, Washington has used an array of means to prevent the TV-networks Al Jazeera and Al Arabiya from operating. (Toronto Star)

Study Finds Widespread Misperceptions on Iraq Highly Related to Support for War; Misperceptions Vary Widely Depending on News Source (October 2, 2003)

What is the difference between individuals who watch Fox news and those who watch Public Broadcasting Service (PBS)? According to this study, Fox viewers are more apt to believe that Al Qaeda had links to the Hussein regime, despite the lack of evidence to support this claim. (Program on International Policy Attitudes)

US Occupation Forces Attack Iraqi Journalists (August 8, 2003)

US occupation authorities shut down an Iraqi newspaper and detained several journalists for reporting on the ongoing resistance. This article contends that these actions, along with many other repressive measures, indicate the true character of the "democracy" and "freedom" the US occupiers bring to the Iraqi people. (World Socialist Website)

The Unreported Cost of War (August 4, 2003)

The US media have minimized military casualties in their reports, documenting less than half of the extraordinarily high number of the actual accidents, suicides and other non-combat deaths in the ranks. (Guardian)

US Media Misleading Public on Iraq Casualties (July 23, 2003)

US media outlets spin the information on US casualties in the post-war Iraq era with euphemisms like "hostile fire," "friendly fire," "combat deaths" and "non-combat deaths" that obfuscate what's really going on in Iraq. (YellowTimes)

US Curtails Iraq's Newfound Media Freedoms (June 27, 2003)

The number of newspapers in Iraq exploded from five to 150 after the fall of Saddam Hussein's regime. However, the US-led administration has begun to curb this enthusiasm by threatening to close down anti-American or pro-Baath publications. (Village Voice)

Poll Shows Errors in Beliefs on Iraq, 9/11 (June 14, 2003)

A poll reports that a third of US citizens believe that Occupying Forces already found weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, even though no discoveries were made. In addition, 22% mistakenly assume Iraq used chemical or biological weapons against US forces during the war. (Charlotte NC Observer)

Hawks Turned Media into Parrots (June 12, 2003)

The Bush administration and the Pentagon did an excellent job of using the US media as tool of propaganda for the war against Iraq. A recent study shows that Pentagon and US administration officials along with other proponents of war dominated the US media, marginalizing any dissident voices. (Toronto Star)

All the News That's Fudged to Print (June 6, 2003)

Harper's magazine publisher John R. MacArthur accuses the New York Times of publishing scare stories on Iraq to promote Washington's war. He especially condemns writer Judith Miller for her "falsified" stories around the time of the US Congress sessions authorizing the war. (Globe and Mail)

Now Dissent Is 'Immoral' (June 2, 2003)

This article deals with the media's continual self-censorship over the war on Iraq and after. Dissident voices in the American press do exist, though they are increasingly becoming marginalized and ostracized. (Guardian)

Reality Clouded by Fog of War (June 1, 2003)

The credibility of media reporting during and after the war in Iraq raises serious questions. The dubious reports range from the fabrication of Private Lynch story to the search for weapons of mass destruction, and have so far yielded scant evidence and comical findings such as a cache of vacuum cleaners. (New Zealand Herald)

Body Counts (May 28, 2003)

The few times Western media reported on deaths in Iraq, they focused mainly on civilians. The bias stems from previous conflicts in the Balkans and Africa where civilians were at greater risk. But evidence in Iraq suggests that the military death toll exceeded the civilian. (Guardian)

''The Dead Who Don't Matter'' (May 28, 2003)

This interesting piece critically analyzes the lack of US media coverage given to the loss of Iraqi lives during the war. "To wonder how many dead Iraqi children there are now lying unburied in the desert is to be a ‘bleeding-heart liberal,' or an ‘enemy sympathizer,' or, in the words of the hysterical and ignorant, a ‘commie.'"(Yellowtimes)

BBC Defies MoD Over Iraq Documentary (May 28, 2003)

In a controversial documentary on the Iraq War, the BBC is refusing to cut footage of the dead bodies of two British soldiers as requested by the Ministry of Defense and the families of the two men. The BBC will broadcast the show despite an extraordinary intervention from Prime Minister Tony Blair.(Guardian)

Hush, Hush on Coalition Deaths (May 18, 2003)

There have been very few reports by the media on US fatalities in post-war Iraq. Very often the military authorities silence reporters and announce that deaths were either an accident or that an investigation is pending. (Yellow Times)

Saving Private Lynch Story Flawed (May 15, 2003)

According to a BBCdocumentary the rescue of US POW Jessica Lynch was stage-managed by the US military, including the use of blank rounds to dramatize the event. The rescue received a lot of attention from the US media and Lynch became an instant hero.

US General May Censor Iraqi TV Station's Programs (May 9, 2003)

Censorship of the Iraqi media will remain despite the fall of Saddam Hussein's regime. The television channel in Mosul is not going to be allowed to transmit whatever it wants. The US is considering putting an army officer and a translator in the station to monitor what goes on the air. (Washington Post)

TV Not Concerned by Cluster Bombs, DU (May 6, 2003)

The US media have been quick to declare the war against Iraq a success. But they do not provide reports on the consequences of cluster bombs or the dangers of depleted uranium. (Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting)

No News Is Good News (May 1, 2003)

The press has been "remarkably tame in going after George W. Bush" since September 11, 2001, and especially since the beginning of the current US war against Iraq, according to Mary Lynn F. Jones of the American Prospect.

Matters of Emphasis (April 29, 2003)

The threat of Saddam Hussein might have been exaggerated by US officials. Saddam Hussein was the perfect means to galvanize support for war. (New York Times)

About Those Iraqi Intelligence Documents: Were They Planted? (April 29, 2003)

Reporters, especially from conservative papers, are invited to walk freely in the rubble of Iraq's Mukhabarat intelligence building in search for information. At the same time there is tight security by US forces around the Iraqi Oil Ministry that may contain documents showing the links between Saddam Hussein and Vice President Dick Cheney's old firm Halliburton. (Counterpunch)

MSNBC's Banfield Slams War Coverage (April 29, 2003)

This is a transcript of NBC news correspondent Ashleigh Banfield's speech on the US media's biased coverage of the war in Iraq. (Alter Net)

Banfield Lashes Out at Own Network (April 28, 2003)

NBC's news correspondent Ashleigh Banfield lashes out at US television networks for glorifying the war coverage without considering the consequences. "A puff of smoke is not what a mortar looks like when it explodes," she said. (Reuters)

Media Nix - From Blix To Kucinich To Dixie Chicks (April 24, 2003)

Chief weapons inspector Hans Blix and the country band the Dixie Chicks have both come in the line of fire from big media outlets for challenging George W. Bush's war agenda. (ZNet)

Tank Captain Admits Firing on Media Hotel (April 21, 2003)

A US army captain admitted an Abram tank fired on the Palestine hotel but stated he was unaware that the international press were staying there. (Guardian)

Is US Casualty Reporting Suffering from Double Standards? (April 15, 2003)

Major US media outlets appear more like tools of Washington than an objective source of reports and analysis of the world situation. (Foreign Policy In Focus)

The US Vs. The UK (April 11, 2003)

There is a difference between US and UK media reporting of the war. For example, Fox News presents an exciting story with a narrow focus and the BBC informs the viewer and offers an opportunity to ask tough questions. (Nation)

Foxa Americana (April 9, 2003)

Rogel Alper of the Israeli newspaper Ha'aretzstates that Fox News is playing a direct role in US propaganda efforts and affecting the perceptions of foreign viewers through its worldwide reach. "Its war coverage is as governmental as that of Iraqi TV," Alper argues. "This is American TV."

Does the US Military Want To Kill Journalists (April 8, 2003)

Robert Fisk, reporting for Independentin Baghdad, critics the latest killing of journalists stating there is the feeling the military wants to take out journalists based in Iraq.

War Takes Toll on Journalists (April 8, 2003)

The conflict in Iraq is causing many civilian casualties but also about a dozen journalists have died in accidents including "friendly" fire from US forces. (BBC)

Casualties Could Test Resolve of US Public (April 1, 2003)

How long the war campaign will last and the amount of casualties the US public will accept is difficult to predict. Public opinion is influenced by 24-hour media coverage. (Christian Science Monitor)

Making Up News (March, 2003)

This article in Le Monde Diplomatiqueprovides examples of US media bias in conflicts and how coverage has become one-sided and strongly patriotic in recent years.

False Claims Litter Iraq Conflict (March 31, 2003)

Scrambling for positive news to justify the war, the US and UK had to take back false claims, ranging from the Iraqi uprising to the premature fall of Basra. (Reuters)

NBC Fires Arnett After Iraq TV Interview (March 31, 2003)

The celebrated journalist Peter Arnett was fired from NBC because he gave an interview on Iraqi television stating that the American-led coalition's first war plan had failed because of Iraq's resistance. (Associated Press)

Why al-Jazeera Was Right to Show Those Terrible Pictures (March 29, 2003)

John Peacock states that both sides of the war use disinformation to justify their cause to the public. Therefore reports must be critically analyzed and war footage is important because it shows realities of war. (Independent)

Arab World Is Seeing War Far Differently (March 28, 2003)

This article suggests there is a biased view among both sides regarding the war, and each reports from their perspective. As a result, people in the west and in the Arab world interpret what they see on television in a vastly different way. (Washington Post)

US Press Criticizes US Strategy in Iraqi War (March 28, 2003)

Several media outlets in the US write that miscalculations of war strategy and the failure to gather overwhelming force has put the coalition into trouble. (Middle East Online)

Hackers Attack Al-Jazeera Website (March 28, 2003)

The website of the satellite TV network al-Jazeera, based in Qatar, was attacked by computer hackers shortly after it launched an English-language news site. Both the Arabic and English sites were affected, as the hackers replaced the website with a logo containing the US flag. (Reuters)

Fog of Coverage Paved the Way for War (March 27, 2003)

Even some members of the mainstream US media are beginning to suggest that they were used by the Pentagon in the lead-up to a war against Iraq to promote the argument that the war would be, in the words of one US official, "a cakewalk." (Toronto Star)

US News Networks, Are They Biased? (March 27, 2003)

According to analysts, the US television networks are supposed to stick to journalistic principles of fair and balanced reporting, but these objectives seem to have been lost in favor of US patriotism. (Middle East Online)

NGO to Monitor Media Treatment in US Military Unit in Iraq (March 26, 2003)

Journalists from Reporters Without Borders will accompany two US battalions operating in Iraq. Their intention is to find out if journalists can actually do their work and how reporters who are not from coalition countries are treated. (Japan Today)

Mood Changes as America Finds War Is Not a Video Game (March 25, 2003)

The conflict in Iraq is not exactly going as planned. The question remains how much the public can tolerate reports of casualties and guerilla style ambushes. (Independent)

Casualties of War (March 25, 2003)

The mass media are going along with Washington's demands by not challenging US military actions in Iraq. (Working for Change)

"It's More Than Exciting, Christiane" (March 24, 2003)

Most TV correspondents reporting from Iraq are attached to combat units and adopt the military viewpoint. Orna Coussin of the Israeli newspaper Ha'aretzasks whether there are any journalists capable of giving us the other side of the war.

Propaganda One of the Biggest Weapons For Both Sides in Iraq War (March 24, 2003)

The war on Iraq is also a propaganda battle between the US-British coalition and Baghdad. Officials on both sides seek to exploit the situation and turn it to their advantage. (Agence France Presse)

Free Press and the Face of War (March 24, 2003)

The true face of war was shown when Al-Jazeera transmitted images of civilians struck by Tomahawk cruise missile and pictures of US POW's in Iraq. (Asia Times)

Pentagon Press Briefing: Farce, Charade and Deception (March 21, 2003)

The press briefings from the White House and the Pentagon are frequently brief and lack any useful or new information on the situation in Iraq. (Yellow Times)

The War of Misinformation Has Begun (March 16, 2003)

According to Robert Fisk of Independent, when the war starts the western media in Iraq will not report the reality and they will use words such as "allegedly" for carnage caused by US forces.

Do Media Know That War Kills? (March 14, 2003)

The mainstream media in the US avoids reporting that people are killed in a war and the civilian infrastructure will be destroyed along with consequences for public health for a long time after the war is over. (Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting)

The Impact of Bush Linking 9/11 and Iraq (March 14, 2003)

There is no evidence that Saddam Hussein played a role in the September 11 attacks. In an effort to maintain American support for a possible war against Iraq, US officials have given the public the impression that Iraq played a direct role in the attacks. (Christian Science Monitor)

American Media Dodging UN Surveillance Story (March 7, 2003)

While the revelation of US plans for an aggressive surveillance operation against members of the UN Security Council delegations has been a major news story throughout the world, it has been almost totally ignored by newspapers in the US. (ZNet)

How the News Will Be Censored in This War (February 25, 2003)

CNN has developed a system of approval that requires all reports to be submitted to anonymous officials in Atlanta to ensure the script is "suitably sanitized." (Independent)

News Media Harden Anti-US Stance (February 19, 2003)

According to research by Medien Tenor, a German agency monitoring media coverage, since the beginning of this year media in the UK and Germany has increasingly turned against the US administration. (Guardian)

Behind the Great Divide (February 18, 2003)

There was a great difference in television coverage of the anti war protests on February 15. US cable news media seemed to be "reporting about a different planet than the one covered by foreign media." The US media are acting as if the US government has already decided to invade Iraq. ( New York Times)

Reporting the Gulf War (February 14, 2003)

Patrick J. Sloyan, who won a Pulitzer Prize for his reporting on the aftermath of the first Gulf War, discusses what reporters were not allowed to print during that war and the development of plans for muzzling the press in the coming months. (Guardian)

Playing the "Terrorism" Card (February 13, 2003)

The White House continues their propaganda game by utilizing the terrorism scare as a way to "frighten the public and keep competing politicians at bay." (ZNet)

Misleading the Public (February 12, 2003)

In another attempt to persuade the public of a terrorist link, the Bush administration claims that the recent Bin Laden tape is "evidence" of a partnership between al Qaida and Iraq. (Yellow Times)

Stifling the Voice of Reason (February 10, 2003)

The campaign to suppress media questioning of US policies on Iraq has reached new levels. Some websites hosting alternative views contradicting Washington's foreign policy have come "under hacker attack and political pressures to ‘relocate'." (Scoop)

A Failure of Skepticism in Powell Coverage (February 10, 2003)

According to Norman Solomon, major news agencies and television anchors immediately believed Secretary of State Colin Powell's "evidence" on Iraq's threat without bothering to question the information. (Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting)

Powell Without Picasso (February 5, 2003)

At the entrance of the UN Security Council, Picasso's antiwar masterpiece "Guernica" was recently covered with a blue blanket. The "Guernica" depicts mutilated humans and would be "inappropriate" when Secretary of State Colin Powell makes his case for a war with Iraq. (New York Times)

Iraq's Hidden Weapons: From Allegation to Fact (February 4, 2003)

Fairness & Accuracy In Reportingquestions US media coverage of the UN inspections, especially the way journalists no longer present allegations as such, but as a statement of fact. Is it due to "an excess zeal or simple carelessness," wonders the newspaper?

Ordinary Americans Think Bin Laden and Saddam Are the Same Man (February 2, 2003)

Since 9/11 Washington has tried to prove that a link exists between Iraq and Al Qeada. The rest of the world is unconvinced, although the US government has been rather successful in convincing the domestic population. (Independent)

American Television Channels on a War Footing (January 31, 2003)

The US military are not the only ones preparing for a war. Major US television networks ranging from Fox to CNN are devoting great amounts of resources in an attempt to establish themselves as the main source of information during a war with Iraq. (Le Monde)

Europe and America Must Stand United (January 30, 2003)

In an attempt to rally support for a possible war, eight European leaders have signed a letter affirming their solidarity with the United States Iraq policy. The letter was published in Times and Wall Street Journal, Europe. (Times, London)

Counterspin: Pro-War Mythology (January 28, 2003)

Scott Burchill refutes the claims media reports ranging from the threat of Saddam Hussein to weapons of mass destruction and Iraq's link with terrorism. The government utilizes "spin doctors and PR consultant firms" to convince the public that a war on Iraq is necessary. Burchill also answers questions regarding oil and the legal aspects of a pre-emptive strike. ( Sydney Morning Herald)

Few Nations Marching to Bush's War Drums (January 27, 2003)

The level of opposition to a war against Iraq is greater in Europe than in the US because "links between the oil and weapons industries and key members of the Bush administration are widely covered in European media." To fill this gap, the Chicago Tribuneuncovers the links between the Bush administration and various oil companies in Iraq.

How the Press Downplayed the Protests (January 24, 2003)

Wayne Madsen discusses the media's deliberate failure to accurately report the number of participants during the anti-war protests in Washington DC on January 18. The voices of the people opposing war were not heard because the Bush administration (and others) have attempted to "marginalize the protestors." (Counter Punch)

Apparatus of Lies

In an attempt to build a case against Iraq, the White House is posting a document regarding Baghdad's "brutal record of deceit" in an attempt to justify a US intervention. Not surprisingly the document does not consider US propaganda or disinformation, an aspect that the White House could take into account for future postings.

War Journalists Should Not Be Cosying Up to the Military (January 21, 2003)

In an upcoming war against Iraq, Robert Fisk of the Independentwarns of possible biased reporting by journalists, especially reporters with close ties to the US military. Fisk also provides a list of factors for viewers to be aware of, such as using "collateral damage" to mean "dead civilians."

Muzzling the Media in Wartime (January 17, 2003)

A recent poll suggests that many Americans believe that news organizations are more obliged to support the government in wartime than to provide coverage that could question the military's handling of the war. In the case of a US war against Iraq, this could lead to serious threats to the First Amendment rights of the press. (Washington Post)

Bushwhacked (January 13, 2003)

Matthew Engel of the Guardianissues a stinging indictment of the US media, with clear implications for mainstream coverage of the Iraq crisis. The Bush administration doles out tidbits of favorably-spun information and rewards the takers, Engel argues, controlling major newspapers' agenda more than any previous administration.

Ex-Bush Speechwriter: I Was to Provide a Justification for War (January 8, 2003)

In his new book, former speechwriter and right-wing columnist David Blum boasts how he assumed the task of devising a convincing justification for a war on Iraq: the so-called Axis of Evil. Blum's book reveals how the Bush administration acted swiftly to use the 9/11 attacks to its political advantage. (What's Left)

Just the Facts (January 6, 2003)

Claiming that "regime change" in Iraq would be a quick, painless process ignores the tens of thousands of Iraqis who perished in the Gulf War, as well as the large percentage of veterans who came home suffering from debilitating diseases. This truthoutarticle argues that the Bush administration employs many such lies to justify its violent quest for oil in Iraq.

The Lies We Are Told About Iraq (January 5, 2003)

When the first Bush administration waged war against Iraq, many US citizens believed reports that Saddam Hussein had Hitler-like ambitions and an enormous army, and that "smart" bombs caused minimal collateral damage. These claims have since been proven false, and "to date, nothing suggests that a second Gulf War would prove any less costly to truth or humans." (Los Angeles Times)


Pentagon Debates Propaganda Push in Allied Nations (December 16, 2002)

The US Defense Department plans a military mission to influence public opinion and policy makers in allied or neutral countries, which has led to conflicts within the Pentagon. Officials debate what some call "information operations against adversaries," which could involve paying journalists or hiring outside contractors to rally support for US policies. (New York Times)

The Papers that Cried Wolf (December 16, 2002)

Brian Whitaker looks at how articles in the US media are giving currency to false or questionable claims made by US intelligence officials and others. He argues that this is part of an effort to "soften up public attitudes to war with Iraq." (Guardian)

Common Myths in Iraq Coverage (November 27, 2002)

Several factual errors circulate with alarming frequency in the mainstream media's coverage of the Iraq crisis. Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting(FAIR) presents the most common myths and sets the record straight.

A Reckless Rush to War (October 21, 2002)

The American Prospectargues that the Bush Administration turns to Iraq to divert attention away from a sharp decline in its domestic political prospects, corporate scandals, and the fall of the stock market.

Who's to Blame If There's War In Iraq? (October 7, 2002)

This satirical article blames the media for seeking better ratings in sensational war topics and keeping US collective minds off their real country's domestic problems such as unemployment. (

Human Rights in the Balance (September 25, 2002)

Amnesty International accuses western governments of manipulating information on human rights abuses in Iraq to build its case for war and criticizes the lack of interest in reported human rights violations in Iraq before the Gulf war.

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