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American Public Attitudes to Overseas Military Deployment

In modern times, the media, which is popularly referred to as the fourth estate, has witnessed unrivaled growth. Not even a single event can now take place without the media coming in and airing it to the world. All sectors of the media have benefitted from the media boom, which has been largely based on the protections devised under special legislation called press freedom. Newspapers, journals, magazines, the internet, television, and radio are some of the major media outlets that are responsible for the dissemination of information to the public. The military campaigns that the United States has participated in during the post-World War Two era have had to deal with this increased media attention (Marshall 2010, p.1). The most recent military engagement, the Iraq war of 2003, witnessed more media attention than any other military conflict. As much as the controversial nature of the war may have led to this attention, the expanded media space also had a part to play. This essay will discuss the role of the increased media coverage in the shaping of the attitudes of Americans towards military activity abroad as well as the impact of media coverage of military activity on military conduct.

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To start with, the increased coverage of military activity by the media has led to the development of a negative attitude towards military activity among the people. The fact that the media has been able to go to the battlefield and cover the graphic scenes of wounded or dead American soldiers has made most Americans view the military activity as a source of suffering for their men and women in uniform (Marshall 2010, p.1). This is especially true when the military activity is based on something that they do not consider to be serious. For example, the invasion of Iraq is still a contentious issue, given that the people who attacked the United States in 2001 were in Afghanistan and not Iraq. Thus when the people see their sons, daughters, fathers, and mothers get killed or wounded for unclear reasons, they detest military activity. This would be a different case if media coverage was reduced, given that they would not have a chance of witnessing all these sad occurrences on the battlefield.

Secondly, the increased media coverage has led to a situation where the public has adopted the attitude that they have to be convinced that any military activity that the country engages in abroad is worth the enormous sacrifices their men and women make. This stems from the witnessing of the tragic events taking place in military campaigns and the subsequent thinking that people should only suffer when the life of the nation is at stake. What about the impact of increased media coverage on military conduct?

Members of the armed forces are now more disciplined on the battlefield as a result of the intense media coverage. The time when the men and women in uniform would mistreat unarmed civilians in other countries and escape unnoticed is long gone. The presence of the media ensures that all that the military personnel is doing is reported, and if it is inappropriate, it is rebuked. Therefore the men and women in uniform have no option other than maintaining the highest standards of discipline while at war (Marshall 2010, p.1).

In conclusion, the increased media coverage of military activity abroad has led to the development of a negative attitude towards war by most Americans and their desire to be convinced that the reason for going to war is worth the sacrifices made by the men and women in uniform. The men and women in uniform on their part have been forced to maintain the highest level of discipline as a result of the increased media attention.

Reference

Marshall, J., (2010). Media on the Battlefield. Web.

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StudyCorgi. (2021, November 25). American Public Attitudes to Overseas Military Deployment. Retrieved from https://studycorgi.com/american-public-attitudes-to-overseas-military-deployment/

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StudyCorgi. (2021, November 25). American Public Attitudes to Overseas Military Deployment. https://studycorgi.com/american-public-attitudes-to-overseas-military-deployment/

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"American Public Attitudes to Overseas Military Deployment." StudyCorgi, 25 Nov. 2021, studycorgi.com/american-public-attitudes-to-overseas-military-deployment/.

1. StudyCorgi. "American Public Attitudes to Overseas Military Deployment." November 25, 2021. https://studycorgi.com/american-public-attitudes-to-overseas-military-deployment/.


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StudyCorgi. "American Public Attitudes to Overseas Military Deployment." November 25, 2021. https://studycorgi.com/american-public-attitudes-to-overseas-military-deployment/.

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StudyCorgi. 2021. "American Public Attitudes to Overseas Military Deployment." November 25, 2021. https://studycorgi.com/american-public-attitudes-to-overseas-military-deployment/.

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StudyCorgi. (2021) 'American Public Attitudes to Overseas Military Deployment'. 25 November.

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