Monday, December 28, 2009

Isolated Journalism

If you get your news from the sources most Americans do, you will not know that India recently test-fired the Agni II, an intermediate-range, nuclear-capable ballistic missile. Nor will you know the test’s results, which were reported all over the subcontinent but not in America. You will probably be unaware of Sergei Magnitsky’s death in a Moscow prison, or of who he was; the news was barely reported in the United States. You will not know that former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic’s trial for war crimes and genocide was suspended, since that doesn’t appear to have been reported in the U.S. at all. Stories from Iraq and Afghanistan combined have accounted for less than 5 percent of the news hole this year, according to Pew Research. Aside from China and Iran, which make occasional cameos, the rest of the world is disappearing from American consciousness, as the New York Times’s list of the ten most e-mailed articles routinely confirms. Top stories at last glimpse: “Catching Tuna and Hanging On for the Ride”; “Payback Time: Wave of Debt Payments Facing U.S. Government”; “Why Exercise Makes You Less Anxious”; and seven other domestic items.

Read the rest of Claire Berlinski here.

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