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The role of war correspondents is crucial to democracy and the public’s discovery of the truth. Without them, the temptation to manipulate events with propaganda would be irresistible to politicians of all hues.
It starts by examining how journalists have plied their trade over the years most particularly from the Crimean War onwards. Their impact on the conduct of war has been profound and the author, an experienced journalist, explains in his frank and readable manner how this influence has shaped the actions of politicians and military commanders. By the same token the media is a potentially valuable tool to those in authority and this two-way relationship is examined.
Technical developments and ’24 hour news’ have inevitably changed the nature of war reporting and their political masters ignore this at their peril and the author examines the key milestones on this road.
Using his own and others’ experiences in recent conflicts, be they Korea, Falklands, Balkans, Iraq or Afghanistan, the author opens the readers’ eyes to an aspect of warfare that is all too often overlooked but can be crucial to the outcome. The public’s attitude to the day-to-day conduct of war is becoming ever more significant and this fascinating book examines why.
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