Fox’s Underlying Hatred and The War in Afghanistan

Fox News’s article on the 10 year mark of the United States’ war with Afghanistan was an interesting mix of resentfulness towards the White House for the lack of acknowledgment they had for the ten year anniversary and a strange denial of what they were supporting a little over 10 years ago.  The entire article seemed like it was an attack on the Obama administration without actually saying that it was. The article does not have a definite author except that it was produced by Associated Press but many would not be surprised about this. The article isn’t really news for those that have followed Fox’s track record of how they decide to report on things; but it is a clear example of the pseudo yellow journalism that they take part in.

In this particular article there is a lot of language that is used to convey a negative image of the current presidency.  By using the recent elections as an example of why the Obama administration is doomed for failure, it takes a biased approach on the entire situation.  They state that since there is an election year coming up, the Republican candidates might be willing to call President Obama out on the war in Afghanistan and foreign policy but those issues might be overshadowed by the economy.  It’s as though they are forgetting the ten year anniversary of the war with Afghanistan and completely focusing on national politics.  For the most of the article, the issue of president Obama failing at appeasing Americans seems to be the main concern with Afghanistan in the background.  That’s not premise for a news story that’s actually sticking to what’s happening, but instead a news story with personal biases as the main message to persuade readers to think a certain way.

The comment of the economy being President Obama’s main concern is a jab at his presidency and how the authors of the article feel like it the war in Afghanistan should have been remembered in a less muted manner.  There however was interesting data on the amount of people that were for the war in the 2001 in comparison to the amount of people that are now against the war.  What I did find interesting is that there wasn’t that much mention of why the war started in the first place.  They did mention the 9/11 attacks on this country and how that started the idea that we should be fighting the war on terror but they didn’t mention all of the “save the women” propaganda that occurred in the beginning of the war.  There were many people that believed that it was our duty to go into both Afghanistan and Iraq to liberate the oppressed women in those countries and simultaneously fight those that attacked us.  These weren’t mentioned at all nor were the rights they previously had and the rights they have now listed.

As much as the Obama administration had promised that they would bring the troops back home from Afghanistan and Iraq, which they have done only in Iraq thus far, people can’t expect wars to end overnight.  It’s especially hypocritical when it’s coming from a news source that strongly supported the U.S. occupation of both Iraq and Afghanistan in the first place.  While I too would like to see the war in Afghanistan come to an end, bashing the presidency for not ending a war that was widely supported under another president’s time in office is not the most productive way to go about reporting things to the public – it creates hostile political arena.

This is continued in the interviews that they included.  In an interview with a senior fellow at the Council of Foreign Relations said that if we want to leave behind a Afghanistan that will actually function well, they are going to have to make some changes to how things are going politically.  He goes on to say that they have been doing well on the military front but not so well on the political part.  This was an interesting way to end the article because not only is the reader left with statistics about how many people want the war with Afghanistan to end but also that it isn’t as close to happening as many might have imagined.

The war in Afghanistan has been taking place for over 11 years now without any idea of when it might end.  Even though there are many people that think that the war should end, it is irrational to think that wars can end whenever a population wants it to end.  There is always a matter of rebuilding and stabilizing the country before leaving it; if we disregarded this we would be leaving Afghanistan in shambles which some might consider being even more immoral.  This article doesn’t do anything but try to shove numbers into the readers face without really informing them about what is actually happening.  It is almost as though they are trying to infuriate Americans by telling them about what a terrible job, even though there isn’t actual evidence to back that claim up, the current administration has been doing without explicitly stating that.

It’s ridiculous and a great example of the bias “news” Associated Press and Fox News present to us.  These media outlets brainwash us and make us believe things without providing information to back up their claims.  Their anti-Obama rhetoric adds to this and makes their message even more absurd.  This makes me wonder if others think that these “news” organizations should be held accountable for the evident biases.  I definitely think they should be – their representation of the news just gives people a misconstrued understanding of the world.  And if they are affecting the way people think and understand, which they clearly are, what negative impacts can that have on our society.  If Fox News is the only news source many Americans follow, the way that they learn about the world might only be through the eyes of conservative businessmen.  Utterly terrifying but sadly what’s actually happening.

— Ifath N. Iftikhar

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