From Massacres to Genocide: The Media, Humanitarian Crises, and Policy-Making

From Massacres to Genocide: The Media, Humanitarian Crises, and Policy-Making

by Robert I. Rotberg
     
 

Human suffering on a large scale is a continuing threat to world peace. Several dozen gruesome civil wars disturb global order and jar our collective conscience each year. The 50 million people displaced by current complex humanitarian emergencies overwhelm the ability of the post-Cold War world to understand and cope with genocide, ethnic cleansing, massacres, and

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Overview

Human suffering on a large scale is a continuing threat to world peace. Several dozen gruesome civil wars disturb global order and jar our collective conscience each year. The 50 million people displaced by current complex humanitarian emergencies overwhelm the ability of the post-Cold War world to understand and cope with genocide, ethnic cleansing, massacres, and other inhumane acts. Greater public awareness of how much is at stake and how much more costly it is to act later rather than sooner can be a critical element in stemming the proliferation of these tragedies.

The media play an increasingly crucial role in publicizing humanitarian crises, and advances in technology have intensified the immediacy of their reports. Because the world is watching as events unfold, policymakers are under great pressure to respond rapidly. Close cooperation between international relief agencies and the media is thus essential to help prevent or contain the humanitarian emergencies that threaten to overwhelm the world's capacity to care and assist.

The authors of this book--all prominent in the fields of disaster relief, journalism, government policymaking, and academia--show how influential well-informed and well-developed media attention has become in forming policies to resolve ethnic and religious conflict and humanitarian crises. The authors argue that the media and humanitarians can collaborate effectively to alter both the attitudes of the public and the actions of policymakers regarding ethnic conflict and humanitarian crises.

In addition to the editors, the contributors are Fred H. Cate, Joel R. Charny, Edward R. Girardet, John C. Hammock, Steven Livingston, Andrew Natsios, Lionel Rosenblatt, John Shattuck, and Peter Shiras.

A Brookings Institution and World Peace Foundation copublication

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780815775904
Publisher:
Brookings Institution Press
Publication date:
02/28/1996
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
203
Product dimensions:
6.28(w) x 9.33(h) x 0.88(d)
Lexile:
1450L (what's this?)

Table of Contents

Preface
Introduction1
1Communications, Policy-Making, and Humanitarian Crises15
2Reporting Humanitarianism: Are the New Electronic Media Making a Difference?45
3Suffering in Silence: Media Coverage of War and Famine in the Sudan68
4Big Problems, Small Print: A Guide to the Complexity of Humanitarian Emergencies and the Media93
5Emergency Response as Morality Play: The Media, the Relief Agencies, and the Need for Capacity Building115
6The Media and the Refugee136
7Illusions of Influence: The CNN Effect in Complex Emergencies149
8Human Rights and Humanitarian Crises: Policy-Making and the Media169
9Coping with the New World Disorder: The Media, Humanitarians, and Policy-Makers179
About the Authors190
About the Sponsoring Institutions194
Index197

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