Degraded Capability: The Media And The Kosovo Crisis

Overview

The media served a highly partisan and propagandistic role in Nato’s Kosovo war, uncritically reproducing official spin in a way that was incompatible with their proclaimed democratic role as objective purveyors of information. Degraded Capability is the first book to integrate a critical interpretation of Western policy toward the former Yugoslavia with analysis of media coverage of the Kosovo crisis and war. The first part of the book deals with the war itself and the build-up to it, placing this in the context...

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Overview

The media served a highly partisan and propagandistic role in Nato’s Kosovo war, uncritically reproducing official spin in a way that was incompatible with their proclaimed democratic role as objective purveyors of information. Degraded Capability is the first book to integrate a critical interpretation of Western policy toward the former Yugoslavia with analysis of media coverage of the Kosovo crisis and war. The first part of the book deals with the war itself and the build-up to it, placing this in the context of earlier Western intervention in Yugoslavia. Part two discusses key issues raised by the media coverage, including the demonisation of the enemy, and the role of CNN. In the final section, contributors analyse how the war was reported in different countries around the world, including the United States, Britain, Germany, India, Greece, Russia, and France. The book offers an important corrective to the hysteria and misinformation that permeated media coverage. Subjects covered include the role of the internet, the changing media-military relationship, the depiction and definition of ‘war crimes,’ and how Yugoslav television was presented as a legitimate military target. Contributors include John Pilger, Edward S. Herman, Phil Hammond, Diana Johnstone and Jim Naureckas.

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Editorial Reviews

Slavic Review
These are all informative, well-written, and well informed contributions. The real value lies in its raising critical and ethical questions about the role of the media in times of crisis and war. The book should be of interest not only to scholars and students of communications and the media and to those interested in the Balkans, but also to anyone concerned with contemporary relationships between international politics and the media during war and crisis.
The New Internationalist
John Pilger and other experts in the field provide a rigorously researched exposé of the many fictions of the "war" and the mechanisms by which they were maintained...Required reading for anyone wishing to understand the war and the media's role in it.
Z. Magazine
Insightful and compelling.. The Kosovo crisis is a painful reminder of how easily journalists fall in behind the party line of the powerful. "Degraded Capability" not only makes that case but serves as a model of what independent journalism can look like.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780745316314
  • Publisher: Pluto Press
  • Publication date: 5/20/2000
  • Pages: 240
  • Product dimensions: 1.11 (w) x 1.11 (h) x 1.11 (d)

Meet the Author

Philip Hammond is senior lecturer in Media Studies at South Bank University. He has written on media coverage and the Kosovo war for the Independent, The Times and Broadcast. He was consultant on Counterblast: Against the War (BBC2 TV). Edward S. Herman is an internationally respected academic and activist who has written over twenty books, including the groundbreaking Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media (Vintage, 1995) with Noam Chomsky. He is currently Professor Emeritus of Finance at Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania.

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Table of Contents

Foreword by Harold Pinter

Introduction by Philip Hammond and Edward S. Herman

Part One: The West's Destruction of Yugoslavia

1. Nato and the New World Order: Ideals and Self-interest by Diana Johnstone
2. Western Intervention and the Disintegration of Yugoslavia, 1989-1999 by David Chandler
3. War Crimes by Mirjana Skoco and William Woodger
4. The War and its Aftermath by Peter Gowan

Part Two: Seeing the Enemy

5. New Militarism and the Manufacture of Warfare by Richard Keeble
6. Nazifying the Serbs, fr

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