(originally posted on March 21, 2003)
Thanks to the wonders of satellite and cable one is able to compare the attitude and approach to the war in Iraq by American (CNN, Fox News), British (BBC) and Italian (RAI) tv and radio channels.
Very briefly and perhaps not surprisingly:
1) The Americans are very positive about the actions, and can’t wait to tell you their excitement in having been “embedded” in fighting units. Problems are unheard of, and likely to be inaudible anyway. Could we get some truth please.
2) The British are obsessed to find out what is going wrong, and what scandals can be uncovered. Problems are the only thing that matters. Furthermore, any idiot with a microphone and a tv press pass will jump to the opportunity to show himself or herself as the “XXI Century Bard”. Can’t you stick to the news please.
3) The Italians concentrate their reporting on two fronts. From the beginning, all rumors are considered true, and analysed viscerally by hordes of tv experts, before being invariably forgotten when demonstrated false. On the other hand, the news are full of sad, unlikely personal stories, from the journalist that couldn’t sleep in Baghdad during a night of bombing, up, up, up to the awful youth of some Saddam Hussein. Listeners are encouraged to weep along. May we talk about the real victims please…