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The Western media exposed

The Western media plays a fundamental role in manipulating world opinion, as can be seen by its biased coverage of Egypt,

Azza Radwan Sedky , Monday 20 Jun 2016
Views: 3452
Views: 3452

Today, it is a given among the majority of Egyptians that the Western media is against them. As Egyptians try to present themselves as being on the right track, someone out there continues to slander their every move and flagrantly ignore their accomplishments.

Is this attitude towards Egypt deliberate and premeditated? If so, why? More importantly, is this only the attitude of the Western media or is that media a mere marionette in the hands of larger powers?

The Western world was sceptical if not critical of the 30 June Revolution. Though many countries have turned around since, Britain remains on the fence, and the US continues to give Egypt the cold shoulder despite official visits and a continued flow of foreign aid. Even if official views are superficially courteous, the Western media is dead set on presenting a tarnished picture of Egypt today.

Egyptians are bewildered. They cannot fathom how the West does not see eye to eye with them on what they consider to be the best thing that could have happened in over five years.

Egyptians went out in droves on 30 June 2013 to call for change. Doesn’t this make the revolution a legitimate one, launched by Egyptians and not enforced upon them?

Egyptians may never get to the real reason behind the hostility, but it will continue for as long as the powers in the West deem it to be necessary.
But while the Western media continues to criticise Egypt, many documentaries are exposing its true colours. The documentary Top 10 Staged Media Events is a case in point. It exemplifies not only the bias, but also the fabrications, of the Western media. Though produced in 2013, it is going viral on social media again today.

The Top 10 Staged Media Events is a 26-minute collage of footage that zooms in on the Western media’s staged coverage. To show that all the networks are reading from the same script and that the media outlets all get their orders from the same external source, the documentary begins with footage of the same repeated message running across many US networks.

One story thread truly hits home: the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in 1990 and the events that occurred thereafter. There is footage of Charles Jaco, a CNN reporter, standing somewhere in Saudi Arabia as he anticipates the falling of an Iraqi Scud missile on Saudi soil. As sirens screech in the background and disaster looms, Jaco looks up to the sky apprehensively. Swiftly he puts his gas mask on and his colleague his helmet as the camera abruptly cuts off.

The drama was found to be faked. The footage was shot in a CNN studio in the US. The rest of the footage has Jaco exclaiming, “I love this country”, as he shows off a fake Scud missile before heading out for a burger and coffee.

In 2001, only 16 per cent of Americans believed that Iraq had had anything to do with the events of 9/11. But after a two-year propaganda war, 60 per cent believed that Iraq had had something to do with them, justifying the 2003 US-led invasion. The propaganda war had succeeded.

The US politician Robert F Kennedy Jr in the same documentary says there are five giant multinational corporations that together control all 14,000 radio stations in the United States, all 5,000 television stations, 80 per cent of newspapers, all billboards, and most large Internet providers. So five American companies govern the media landscape and control what is seen, heard and read across the world.

We can go further. According to award-winning ex-CNN investigative journalist Amber Lyon, CNN is routinely paid by the US government to have it selectively report on certain events while censoring others. And while Western newspapers criticise China, Russia and other countries regarding censorship and limitations on freedom of speech, they await content and quotation approval from the gatekeepers in the White House before printing their stories.

At face value, Google is a conglomerate that provides Internet-related services, but it seems to have been bitten by the same bug. One prominent commentator on this is activist Julian Assange of Wikileaks. In his book When Google Met Wikileaks, Assange goes in depth into how Google profits from its association with the US State Department and vice versa.

This tells us that the Western media can and does play a fundamental role in manipulating world views, regardless of what the truth might be. Be it the Ukraine-Russia War, the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, or Egypt’s 30 June Revolution, the bias is clear as day. And yet the world digests such information unabashed, only for it to be regurgitated on social media soon afterwards.

Objectivity, integrity and altruism go by the wayside in the face of money, power and dominance — from a seemingly squeaky-clean journalistic facade that delivers the news to media outlets bought by wealthy decision-makers to worthwhile stories that remain locked in drawers and insignificant ones that are highlighted and brought into the limelight.

While the Western media continues to wage a war against some countries and to hold others unaccountable, Western newspapers, TV networks and Internet providers fabricate facts and stage stories to defame and discredit, make omissions to suit their liking, and are bought and censored by governments.

All this is taking place while President Abdel-Fattah Al-Sisi, whom the Western media has shunned, has allowed journalist Ossama Kamal to ask whatever Egyptians would like to know during his two-year presidency in an interview with no censorship, no prohibitions and no omissions, but gaining very little coverage from the Western media.

It is high time that we took the Western media with a grain of salt, doubting everything and believing nothing.

The writer is author of Cairo Rewind: The First Two Years of Egypt's Revolution. That article was published in Al-Ahram Weekly on 16 June.

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27-06-2016 07:32am
What's the real danger with Western media?
It certainly isn't their (for the most) passed classification of the June 30 events: people get bombarded with negative thinking daily so that, like advertising, it fascinates less and less. The real danger of all the nearly exclusively negative reports is how this influences the world's subconsciousness. We used to hear much about good deeds and exceptionally spiritual lives. And at that time people where trying to be as good as the best. Now, many believe there's hardly anybody who's still good and doing nice things for others because this is not reported upon. Why? Pretendedly, it doesn't sell as well as the evil side of Man... And they aren't fair to religions so people more and more tend to quit religion. All this essentially contributes to the world we de fecto have, unfortunately.
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25-06-2016 03:54am
back like a heart attack
Everything this article says is true. The west has a serious hatred for Egypt. Egypt has done everything reasonable to defeat radical islamism, yet the west still has their thumb somewhere. Yet, it is in egypt's power to change that. The west simply doesn't know how to deal with egypt. It feels threatened by Egypt. The only way is to create a liberty culture where the west will not feel threatened and will feel included. This is done by protecting the freedom of everyone through state policies that abide by the free market principles. The laws however are entirely through egyptian values which include not violating islamic principles. This translates to free market policies that translate to laws in accordance with egyptian values.
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24-06-2016 02:33pm
Why does the West have a low opinion of Egypt?
Why does the West have a low opinion of Egypt? Because it is ruled by a military elite - and this in the West is considered a democratic failure. The West was glad when the Arab Spring in Egypt seemed to herald democracy - but it was saddened when the final outcome was a religiously conservative military regime. If the West does not understand Egypt's predicament (that the military are a better option than the Muslim radicals) the author of this article does not seem to understand public opinion in the West, where secular democracy is highly valued.
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22-06-2016 01:57pm
Fishbowl Syndrome
Saying that "the Western media is dead set on presenting a tarnished picture of Egypt today" is akin to the Fishbowl Syndrome; being stuck in a confined inward looking view point. Western Powers were very concerned when MB radicals won the election; then they were somewhat relieved when the Army government unseated the MB, despite the how. What the West (and most reasonable people) were hoping for is a peaceful transformation of power to the EGYPTIAN PEOPLE, not going back to an army police state like the one we had for 30 years. Why does the West care who rules Egypt; they actually don't ,as long as the 90 million Egyptian people have a path to democracy and stability so that they don't add to the headaches and instability of the Middle East. Today’s Egypt is less stable politically and economically than before 2011; this is what concerns the Western Media and Western Powers, not tarnishing the picture of Egypt!
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Sam Enslow
20-06-2016 02:43pm
Why do you care?
Tourists are not wanted in Egypt because according to the Security Forces they are probably spies. The religious leaders say they only come to corrupt the morals of the pure Egyptians. Since Mubarak, the Egyptian press has stressed how evil the West, especially the US, treats Egypt. Even when they do something Egypt wants, the most terrible motives are ascribed to it. So the tourists and Western powers do what Egyptians have said over and over again they wanted, 'Leave us alone.' There are countries that do not have such a low opinion of The West so the West works with them, visits them. Western companies have standards for investing. Egypt doesn't agree with those standards, so the companies invest where they are welcome and international standards and the rule of law mean something. A confident nation doesn't worry so much about how others see it. If Egyptians are happy with conditions in Egypt, that is all that is important. The Egyptian Way suits Egypt - fine. Don't woody what others think. It is important the people of Egypt are happy.
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20-06-2016 01:09pm
With all due respect Azza …
your analysis is inaccurate on 2 fronts: (1) The Western Media as well as Western people do NOT have any animosity toward the Egyptian PEOPLE; they have an issue with Sisi’s government for showing no respect for human rights toward the Egyptian PEOPLE; arresting, jailing, torture, and force disappearance of thousands (including some of their own). A handful of credible Egyptian media outlets have also been reporting on; are they also against the Egyptian people? (2) Stating that Western Media showing Egypt not on the right track; what right track? Have you examined the economy lately? Saying that we are not Syria, Iraq, Libya, or Yemen is setting the bar too low and admitting failure; are we doing well just because we haven’t collapsed? Egypt deserves better, the Egyptian people deserve better than MB Morsi or Police State Sisi. Let’s stop blaming the world for our OWN failure and successive governments incompetence!
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