Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Propaganda wars


What has been happening on the media scene these past days defies imagination. There are two completely different groups of media outlets, and each group's news is not only different in their packaging but in the news content itself. If you try to listen to the two sides, you get two totally different images of this war, completely unrelated, as if each side is living in their own universe…


For example, two days ago, on one side there was this news items announcing that eight Israeli soldiers were killed and two more abducted. For three or four hours, this was the main headline. Then suddenly this piece of news disappeared, without any retraction. There is also the strange incident of the warplane that was supposedly shot down in Jamhour, then it turned out to be a surveillance balloon, while other speculated that it was a large missile being transported and was hit by an Israeli air raid…

Meanwhile, on the other side, the Israeli estimate of Hezbollah's death toil was 200 or so fighters. Then the numbers went down to 25 and then up, again no retraction or admitting any mistakes. Also, the news items from a week ago announcing that the Israeli army has occupied Beint Jbili, while the other side denied it saying that IDF have not even reached it, and so on…

Another example, yesterday's Israeli warship that was supposedly hit, one side was adamant, the other vehemently denied. And each day we are greeted with a supposed number of Israeli tanks destroyed, meanwhile Israel announces the death of several high ranking Hezbollah commanders every couple of days… again one side announces the news the other totally denies it.

What is even more worrisome is that each side totally believes their own source of information, never doubting or even trying to substantiate their information. On the contrary, they take for granted all their sides information and brand the other side's as total lies. Meanwhile, anyone who is still interested in some objective news and trying to understand what is really happening is left totally bewildered and clueless.

But like in everything in this wretched life, there is always a good side even to the worst situations. And it is my understanding that someone needs to win in order for this war to end, so if both parties feel that they are winning, if one hears their propaganda machines, then all the better and this will end sooner. Yet somehow, this propaganda war seems to only affecting us, the public opinion, and not both parties commands, for it seems that they know perfectly well what is happening and prefer to keep us all in the dark…
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