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Thursday, April 17, 2014

Why does the mass media ignore mass murder in Syria?

I recall when the mantra of the media was "if it bleeds, it leads." That certainly isn't the case with regards to Syria. If more than a hundred people and a dozen children met with a violent end almost anywhere else in the world, it would make the morning news cycle. It happens every day in Syria without so much as a notice.

It can't be for lack of visuals. We all know TV news is a sucker for graphic video. A good video will even make a story where otherwise there wouldn't be one. The Syrian conflict has produced some of the most graphic and tense, or in the case of Syrian refugee children, compelling and heart-rending, videos the world has ever seen, available for free from YouTube, and with today's HD consumer grade cameras, not bad quality. Yet very little of this video ever makes it into the evening news. The true picture of this conflict and the human suffering it is causing is being hidden from us. Even Amy Goodman on Democracy Now fails in her notice of the dead or her concern for the children.

When the media was trying to rally people to fight Saddam Hussein, they made a big deal out of a false story that had Iraq troops throwing babies out of incubators in Kuwait, now we have Assad's planes bombing play grounds, schools, breadlines and hospitals, and mums the word. Why are they covering up Assad's crimes when they should be reporting them?

One of the best indications this is the mainstream media's policy came this week when the Syrian government and the Syrian opposition traded accusations over who was using poison gas again in Syria. This should be a big news story for the mainstream media but it has raised hardly a murmur.

The media paid attention to Syria as never before after the 21 August sarin attack because it involved Obama's called bluff and it showed the bodies as never before. As if a hundred thousand people had not been slaughtered already by non-chemical means, the media jumped all over the chemical attack as though it was a fetish. The shameless pro-Assad forces in the blogosphere took up the defense of Assad as if proving he didn't do the sarin attack was the same as exonerating him of mass murder. Even while the media failed to report on Assad's continuing siege of Ghouta, using both bombardment and starvation as weapons, they gave coverage for everybody's opinions and findings on the chemical attack.

There can be little doubt that there have been new chemical attacks in Syria, since both sides agree there have been. While they both predictively point the finger at get other, if the reports that the gas bombs there dropped out of helicopters are accurate, there can be little doubt that those were Assad regime helicopters. Given the history of coverage on the chemical question in Syria, one would expect reports of a new chemical attack to break through this news blackout.

Why hasn't it?

Click here for a list of my other blogs on Syria

1 comment:

  1. Braindead or 'head-in-the-sand' - the 'Liberal' shows just don't want to know the truth.
    They "stopped a war" and can high-five each other, while ignoring the news out of Syria as too disturbing.

    Note that Goodman would report on the horrors of the Pinochet regime 'disappearing' thousands, just because it is so embarassing to the CIA.
    The CIA and Kissinger had Allende removed from the picture.

    The War Crimes of Assad don't embarrass the U.S. so it will not be a feature on Democracy Now and it is as simple as that.

    ('disappeared' means raped, tortured, brutalized, broken into naming anyone at all, then killed), exactly why frantic hero rebels are attacking the dozens of Torture Centers in Syria, disguised as hospitals, schools or just a prison.