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Bias assignment elias


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Bias assignment elias

  1. 1. BRIEF ACCOUNT OF RELATED EVENTS • President Obama wishes to arm rebels with small arms. • An estimated 70% of US civilians disagree with US involvement. • Recently the CIA began training rebels that have gone through selection. • There is controversial evidence that the Syrian government used chemical weapons. • The Free Syrian Army wants US involvement. • Russia is disagreeing with US proposals of dealing with Syria.
  2. 2. MY BIAS This presentation analyses and compares perspectives on the matter of US President Obama delivering weapons (small arms, shoulder-fired missiles) to the Free Syrian Army. From a western perspective I believe that Obama is doing the right call by arming rebels rather than sending in ground forces. Doing such the US avoids going to war with the Syria which effectively minimizes loss of western lives in the conflict. This is my bias as being a westerner I feel more compelled to feel sympathy for the US. I would think that if I weren‟t from a western country I would be less likely to support armament and more likely to either support liberation or doing nothing at all. Liberation would draw fire from rebels and thus protect Syrian lives. Doing nothing at all allows Syria to work on it‟s problems by itself despite the government being backed by other countries.
  3. 3. WESTERN BIAS A news website called Bloomberg uses phrases such as: “… A U.S missile attack on Syria would be intended solely to punish his regime’s use of chemical weapons.” Notice how the word punish is used rather than use more peaceful words such as retaliate or respond. The authors (David Lerman & John Walcott) aim to guide people to feel better about a U.S missile attack as a word such as „punish‟ implies that what the Syrian government is doing very wrong. Later on in the same article when talking about what weapons they intend to send to Syria the authors write: “Local fighters and defectors from the regime are trained to use simpler and more rugged Russian-made equipment, not more complex American arms.” I hypothesize the reason as to why include this in the article is , other than explain that USA is not sending American weapons, the authors attempt to glorify the United States, thus appealing to the readers of which the majority is most likely American/western as it is an American website. Bloomberg is reportedly leaning towards Labour Party bias which is pro- democratic and is most likely the reason as to why they support the US.
  4. 4. WESTERN BIAS Another news website called Policymic also appears to be for the arming of rebels. They author calls Obama‟s plan to arm rebels “Machiavellian Genius”. On top of this they claim CIA‟s training of rebels is a “clandestine dissemination of aid”. By approving Obama‟s wishes the website gains some agreement from the masses. Some might consider news agencies the dominant source of „right‟ information, and as such if they consider Obama right so do the people. Additionally by claiming that CIA‟s mission is clandestine (peaceful, tranquil) the author reinforces the readers that the US is not involved in hostilities and are only engaged in „good‟ aid. This is possible evidence of a Status Quo bias which, in this case, focuses only on the good side of America‟s involvement in Syria. It also feels as if the article is evaluating the situation rather than reporting. The author again appeals to Americans by explaining that this approach of dealing with Syria lessens the risk of American lives being lost, which can allow westerners to support Syria involvement without worrying about countrymen. Policymic states on their website that they are „the first democratic online news platform‟ and as a democratic news site are more likely to agree with Obama‟s ideals.
  5. 5. EASTERN BIAS Sources claim that Russia is very opposed to the issue of USA arming Syrian rebels. Despite promoting the fact that arming rebels would stall peace it is hard to believe that this is Russia‟s true intent as they are one of the suppliers of military hardware to the Syrian government. A statement from Moscow said that armament sent could end up in the hands of “terrorists” and “encourage the opposition towards a destructive military solution for Syria.” This statement is made to appeal to those against involvement in Syria and is mainly directed at the Russian population. The statement uses words like terrorists and destructive military solution to install fear and stray people away from being proactive towards arming rebels. Russia has had a broad hostile history with the US which precedes even the Cold War and are also suppliers to the Syrian government. Their disagreement with Obama seems natural. Additionally their pro-Syrian government bias is noticeable in the slanting of rebels and USA‟s methods.
  6. 6. EASTERN BIAS An article from JPOST claims that Russia believes that the U.S is stalling peace in Syria by arming the rebels, however, it appears to be more biased towards the U.S as „purr‟ words like support and help are thrown around which again shows that despite announcing Russia‟s views on the situation a westerner written article is still leaning towards agreeing with the US even though 70% of the population disagrees with involvement. Another article, this time from PressTV, begins with the following: “Russia warns the United States, the European Union and their regional allies against supplying more weapons to insurgents fighting against Syrian government.” This phrase by itself is enough to motivate westerners to be pro-rebel as a threat to the US, EU and their allies can cause anger and hatred towards Russia and avoid association with their political views on the Syrian matter. JPOST is Israeli and regarded having a centrist position. Despite not leaning neither left or right wing the newspaper is still Israeli and is more than likely to share Israeli president Peres‟ view, which it does. PressTV on the other hand is based in Iran. Iran is an ally of Syria which explains the scare tactics being used in the article. The entire agency is also infamous for promoting Iran at the expense of truth and reason which shows their bad news bias. On top of this harmony is boring and it is more beneficial for the news agency to write about conflict.
  7. 7. ISRAELI BIAS I felt the need to include an Israeli perspective on the issue as the Hezbollah, a Palestinian terrorist organization, is involved in the conflict. has an article concerning the arming of rebels and takes it‟s bias from an Israeli perspective. The articles title is „U.S. right to arm Syrian rebels, says Israeli president.’ – I believe that this was purposefully titled like this in order to appeal to Americans and people around the globe that might or might not support the U.S. involvement. If a nation, and in this case a major political figure, takes USA‟s side in this matter it could potentially lead others to follow. In the article it is written that Israeli president Peres stated the following: “Unfortunately it is becoming more of a confrontation between two superpowers and there is a growing intervention of outside forces.” Peres is clearly talking about the Hezbollah and Iranian involvement in assisting the Syrian government. Helping people realize that the U.S. wouldn‟t be alone against Syria could lead people to want to empower the U.S. or stray away from it out of fear of facing a superior enemy, especially after everything that has happened in Iraq and Afghanistan. is accused to have an anti-Israel and an Anglophone bias. The Anglophone bias is evident as they agree with Obama and David Cameron on the Syria issue.
  8. 8. CONCLUSION & BIBLIOGRAPHY There were no apparent inferences, at least none that I could find. It also appears that despite the majority of Americans leaning away from involvement the articles are very pro-Obama. This could be because I have no republican sources which shows my accidental bias in basing my collective knowledge on mostly democratic websites. Bibliography in order of citation: • rebels.html • genius • 320908 • •