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Communication | International and Intercultural Communication | Journalism Studies | Social and Behavioral Sciences


Katherine Johnson, Communication


Although the public generally thinks of the news media as sources of factual, complete and objective information, due to the routines of production through which journalists are trained to use to present and gather news, they cannot be objective. The sources journalists rely on for information, and the choices they make in deciding what is newsworthy and how to frame stories influences what and how information is portrayed to the public. Thus, the media can unintentionally influence the way in which audiences understand the events and the knowledge they have to question the decisions being made. Studies have shown that the news media reflect the foreign policy objectives of the United States in their coverage of international events. This study examines the different foreign policy objectives of Great Britain and the United States toward the conflict between the Turks and the Kurds, specifically regarding the Kurd leader's flight and capture in late 1998 and early 1999. Eighty articles from The Times (of London) and The New York Times were analyzed textually to see how the Kurdish and human rights issues, and the political circumstances were framed. My analysis demonstrated that news coverage mirrored the foreign policy objectives of their respective countries.