Nobody Cares About Afghanistan

The war in Afghanistan is costing hundreds of billions of dollars. The military occupation is party to severe human rights violations and outright atrocities. Conditions are not only not improving, they are getting worse. If you’re a regular reader of this site, you know about these things in detail. If you’re a regular consumer only of major media outlets, you know almost nothing of the war.

In the past year, “weekly monitoring of 52 major papers, news Web sites, TV networks and stations, and radio stations” found that Afghanistan made up only 2 percent of the coverage. Via Brian Stelter at the New York Times blog:

Of all the news content in newspapers and on the Web, television and radio this year, Afghanistan accounted for about 2 percent of coverage, according to the Project for Excellence in Journalism, an arm of the Pew Research Center.

Six other subjects were given more sustained attention than the war there. In descending order, they were the economy in the United States; the unrest in the Middle East; the 2012 presidential election; the earthquake, tsunami and ensuing nuclear disaster in Japan; the killing of Osama bin Laden; and the shooting in Tucson in which six were killed and Representative Gabrielle Giffords, Democrat of Arizona, was critically injured.

Here is the full study. Truthfully, I’m not even sure how to feel about this predictable reality. It’s tragic the news media doesn’t pay close attention to this, and even more tragic that virtually the entire electorate is ignorant of what is going on there. But if Afghanistan were given lots of coverage time, we could expect it to be inaccurate, indoctrinated, and to whitewash American crimes (which are ubiquitous).

One thought on “Nobody Cares About Afghanistan”

  1. I'm sure this is intentional. If the public were fed a continuous diet of the truth about Afghanistan (as occurred during the Vietnam War), support would undoubtedly diminish, resulting in some of our congressional representatives being voted out of office. Better to keep the people ignorant and distracted. Also, don't raise their taxes to make them pay for it, and don't draft them to fight in it.

    1. The pro war media propaganda during the Vietnam war resulted in the war staying popular until the very end. Once in a while a bit of truth slipped through but the overwhelming majority of news from the main stream media promoted or covered up the war. Just like today.

      1. That is not completely true. A lot of grim news appeared in the media, and more importantly, people paid attention to it. Walter Cronkite famously expressed his view that the war had failed. There were massive antiwar protests on college campuses and elsewhere, and we saw them all on our televisions. And the Tet offensive was coverered in full. It drove Lyndon Johnson out of office. Eventually, the army itself broke, and that is what brought an end to the war and an end to the draft. The current wars are on a much smaller scale and are easier to ignore. It is a lot different.

  2. The birther issue got more airtime than Iraq & Afghanistan, the media was all over Libya till it got boring for awhile, then gadhafi was “captured”. The media talks about Afghanistan when a soldier dies or when they bring up foreign policy “accomplishments” for Obama

  3. Were the general electorate to understand the lenghts that the U.S. is willing to contemplate in their Afghanistan "war of choice" they would, I think, be outraged. For example, the U.S. made a deal with Russia whereby they would blacklist the Chechen resistance as terrorists and use their financial muscle to block foreign assisstance in exchange for unmarked Russian bombers bombing fixed Taliban positions while their troops from the 201st MRR, based in Tajikistan, and clad in disguised uniforms of Northern Alliance regulars fight against the Taliban. Not only is this inviolation of the 1923 Hague Draft Rules, but it sets the stage for a Northern Alliance government to succeed Karzai, an untenable situation for the Afghan people who see them as war criminals and drug traffickers.
    Our Afghanistan policy is an abomination.

  4. All the more important that AntiWar report the war in Afghanistan including daily casualty counts of civilians, armed forces, and the nature of the battles, air strikes, IED's and other carnage that occurs.

  5. afghans civillians are pawns on the chessboard of imperliast crusaders and drug dealing warlords

  6. Yeah, because we all know that Obama the Peace Laureate is going to end the wars, evacuate the military bases, bring the troops home and shrink the military down to the size necessary only for territorial defence.

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