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The Political Economy of Global Communication - Essay Example

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Among host of lessons, the catastrophic tragedy of September 11 has taught the citizens of the worlds that communication plays an enormous role in security on international and national scales. From there, the media has emerged as a key player in safety and security issues involving conflict and war…
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The Political Economy of Global Communication
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Download file to see previous pages It has become a catch-22. As Peter Wilkin (2001) states, the "means of communication is a dangerous weapon to be placed in the hands of private institutions driven by profit interests as much as it is when placed in the hands of monopoly state power." The news media is this profit-driven organization, and its threat is real. The arena now is Iraq, now in the third year of a war sprung from the fear of a threat. Today, the relationship between the state and the media in terms of supporting each others interests.
The available body of literature indicates that security issues have changed since World War II. The perceptions of people in the East differ greatly from those in the West due, in part, to media and communication as a whole. Prevention is often overlooked as an integral part of security. The case study will evaluate the role of the media in global security. Oftentimes ownership of media, whether public or private, plays a role in the kind of communication people may receive. In addition, wealthy investors, owners, and sponsors can skew the presentation of communications messages both locally and globally. The media is a powerful and influential player in high stakes political games but is also a tool in which a civil society gets information about global issues which now may affect them. Finally, this paper will examine how the Iraq crisis of 2002/2003, when the possible manufacture and stockpiling of weapons of mass destruction came to a peak, was both created and shaped by the media of both the United States, the aggressor in this conflict, and Germany, the largest member of the European Union and a staunch opponent of the war.
According to a study compiled by the World Watch Institute, security tops the lists of concerns for most nations (State of the World, 2005). National security is frequently referred to as the military, or the military and homeland security and has resulted in the creation of the Department of Homeland Security in the United States. However, according to Anita Dancs, (2006), director of the National Priorities Project and Security Policy Working Group member, "securing our nation has three components: the military, homeland security and preventive measures." Preventive measures refer to actions, plans and policies that neutralize or prevent violent conflicts (Dancs, 2006).
Undoubtedly, the media plays a new role in global security by virtue of its position in the communications marketplace. They determine public opinion and can shape decisions and alter perceptions of problems. For example, Paul Rogers (2005) reports that even though North Americans typically respond to surveys that violence is on the rise both nationally and internationally, worldwide violence is actually diminishing. The Human Security Report reveals that "the number of armed conflicts has decreased by more than 40% , and the number of major conflicts(which it defines as resulting in 1,000 or more battle-deaths) has declined by 80%" (Rogers, 2005). The report also notes that the number of autocratic regimes is decreasing as well. This is an important consideration because, as Stephen Krasner (1983) has delineated, regimes are based upon norms and principles which do not change without a revolutionary impetus. For example, if a terrorist regime acts upon the principles of their religion and seek to fight a holy war, such as in the tragedy of 9/11, ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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