We had a server outage, and we're rebuilding the site. Some of the site features won't work. Thank you for your patience.
imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
Features
latest news
best of news
syndication
commentary


KILLRADIO

VozMob

ABCF LA

A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List

LAAMN List




IMC Network:

Original Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

CNN Says Focus on Civilian Casualties Would Be "Perverse" (FAIR)

by Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting Friday, Nov. 02, 2001 at 9:59 PM

According to the Washington Post (10/31/01), CNN Chair Walter Isaacson "has ordered his staff to balance images of civilian devastation in Afghan cities with reminders that the Taliban harbors murderous terrorists, saying it 'seems perverse to focus too much on the casualties or hardship in Afghanistan.'"

                                 FAIR-L
                    Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting
               Media analysis, critiques and news reports
 
 
 
 
 
ACTION ALERT:
CNN Says Focus on Civilian Casualties Would Be "Perverse"
 
November 1, 2001
 
According to the Washington Post (10/31/01), CNN Chair Walter Isaacson "has
ordered his staff to balance images of civilian devastation in Afghan cities
with reminders that the Taliban harbors murderous terrorists, saying it
'seems perverse to focus too much on the casualties or hardship in
Afghanistan.'"
 
Post media reporter Howard Kurtz quotes a memo from Isaacson to CNN's
international correspondents: "As we get good reports from
Taliban-controlled Afghanistan, we must redouble our efforts to make sure we
do not seem to be simply reporting from their vantage or perspective. We
must talk about how the Taliban are using civilian shields and how the
Taliban have harbored the terrorists responsible for killing close to 5,000
innocent people."
 
The memo went on to admonish reporters covering civilian deaths not to
"forget it is that country's leaders who are responsible for the situation
Afghanistan is now in," suggesting that journalists should lay
responsibility for civilian casualties at the Taliban's door, not the U.S.
military's.
 
Kurtz also quotes a follow-up memo from Rick Davis, CNN's head of standards
and practices, that suggested sample language for news anchors:
 
" 'We must keep in mind, after seeing reports like this from
Taliban-controlled areas, that these U.S. military actions are in response
to a terrorist attack that killed close to 5,000 innocent people in the
U.S.' or, 'We must keep in mind, after seeing reports like this, that the
Taliban regime in Afghanistan continues to harbor terrorists who have
praised the September 11 attacks that killed close to 5,000 innocent people
in the U.S.,' or 'The Pentagon has repeatedly stressed that it is trying to
minimize civilian casualties in Afghanistan, even as the Taliban regime
continues to harbor terrorists who are connected to the September 11 attacks
that claimed thousands of innocent lives in the U.S.' "
 
Davis stated that "even though it may start sounding rote, it is important
that we make this point each time."
 
The New York Times reported (11/1/01) that these policies are already being
implemented at CNN, with other networks following a similar, though perhaps
not as formalized, strategy. "In the United States," the Times noted,
"television images of Afghan bombing victims are fleeting, cushioned between
anchors or American officials explaining that such sights are only one side
of the story." In other countries, however, "images of wounded Afghan
children curled in hospital beds or women rocking in despair over a baby's
corpse" are "more frequent and lingering."
 
When CNN correspondent Nic Robertson reported yesterday from the site of a
bombed medical facility in Kandahar, the Times reported, U.S. anchors "added
disclaimers aimed at reassuring American viewers that the network was not
siding with the enemy." CNN International, however, did not add any such
disclaimers.
 
During its U.S broadcasts, CNN "quickly switched to the rubble of the World
Trade Center" after showing images of the damage in Kandahar, and the anchor
"reminded viewers of the deaths of as many as 5,000 people whose 'biggest
crime was going to work and getting there on time.'"
 
If anything in this story is "perverse," it's that one of the world's most
powerful news outlets has instructed its journalists not to report Afghan
civilian casualties without attempting to justify those deaths. "I want to
make sure we're not used as a propaganda platform," Isaacson told the
Washington Post. But his memo essentially mandates that pro-U.S. propaganda
be included in the news.
 
ACTION: Please tell CNN to factually report the consequences of the U.S. war
in Afghanistan without editorializing. Including a justification for the
bombing with every mention of civilian casualties risks turning CNN from a
news outlet into a propaganda service.
 
CONTACT:
CNN, Walter Isaacson, Chairman and CEO
Phone: (404) 827-1500
Fax: (404) 827-1784
mailto:community@cnn.com
 
As always, please remember that your comments are taken more seriously if
you maintain a polite tone. Please cc fair@fair.org with your
correspondence.
 
For further details, see Howard Kurtz's full Washington Post story:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A14435-2001Oct30.html
 
                               ----------
 
Feel free to respond to FAIR ( fair@fair.org ). We can't reply to
everything, but we will look at each message. We especially appreciate
documented example of media bias or censorship. And please send copies of
your email correspondence with media outlets, including any responses, to us
at: fair@fair.org .
 
FAIR ON THE AIR: FAIR's founder Jeff Cohen is a regular panelist on the Fox
News Channel's "Fox News Watch," which airs which airs Saturdays at 6:30 pm
and Sundays at 11 pm (Eastern Standard Time). Check your local listings.
 
FAIR produces CounterSpin, a weekly radio show heard on over 130 stations in
the U.S. and Canada. To find the CounterSpin station nearest you, visit
http://www.fair.org/counterspin/stations.html .
 
Please support FAIR by subscribing to our bimonthly magazine, Extra!
For more information, go to:
http://www.fair.org/extra/subscribe.html . Or call 1-800-847-3993.
 
FAIR's INTERNSHIP PROGRAM: FAIR accepts internship applications for its New
York office on a rolling basis. For more information, see:
http://www.fair.org/internships.html
 
You can subscribe to FAIR-L at our web site: http://www.fair.org , or by
sending a "subscribe FAIR-L enter your full name" command to
LISTSERV@LISTSERV.AMERICAN.EDU . Our subscriber list is kept confidential.
 
You may leave the list at any time-- just send a message with "SIGNOFF
FAIR-L" in the body to: LISTSERV@LISTSERV.AMERICAN.EDU .
 
                                  FAIR
                             (212) 633-6700
                          http://www.fair.org/
                          E-mail: fair@fair.org
 
list administrators: FAIR-L-request@american.edu
 

 
Report this post as:

LATEST COMMENTS ABOUT THIS ARTICLE
Listed below are the 10 latest comments of 1 posted about this article.
These comments are anonymously submitted by the website visitors.
TITLE AUTHOR DATE
Face the truth, CNN already is propagand reason Saturday, Nov. 03, 2001 at 10:13 PM
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy