October 19, 2004

Media Diary – 19th October – British troops dispatched for Iraq

Writing about web page http://www.timesonline.co.uk/newspaper/0,,171-1317060,00.html and http://www.thesun.co.uk/article/0,,2-2004482157,00.html

Iraq – "Triangle of Death that awaits British troops" – 19th October (The Times)

This article discusses the fact that British troops are likely to be dispatched for service in central Iraq, to an area called the 'Trainge of Death', in order to free up American troops. According to this article, this particular area is notorious for kidnappings, assassinations and beheadings. It is also believed to be in a similar vincinity to when the execution of Kenneth Bigley took place.

This proposed deployment of troops has aroused various opinions on whether it is the correct thing to do. The article provides quotes for and against this decision. For example, the Labour MP Dennis Skinner suggests it was aimed at, 'helping President Bush with his re-election'. However, the defence secretary, Geoff Hoon claims Britiain is simply fulfilling its duty as an ally. It they do deploy, the British troops will be taking reponsibility for a 'strategicaly important area'.

The article finishes by stating that there is still a lot of work to be done in this area by the American or British troops. Also, the article claims that since the American Marines moved into the town two weeks prior, one of their men had been killed and many more had been injured.

Iraq – "Troops on alert for Iraq" – 19th October (The Sun)

In The Sun, a tabloid newspaper I found information on the same topic, in another article. It mentions that the troops were being sent to the same area in which Ken Bigley had been beheaded. One difference between the two articles which can be noted is that the Sun claims 650 troops were to be sent to the 'danger zones around Baghdad' whilst The Times announced it to be 900.

The Sun adds to the information provided by the The Times as it comments that the troops being sent out to replace the American Marines had been told that they were to be 'going home within weeks after serving four months of their tour' and they have now been told it will be extended to six months.

I think that The Sun had mentioned this in order to make the story more appealing and interesting to its audience. It creates scandall and arouses angry and irritation in its readers. this is a means by which to help sell the paper.

Thus, it can be seen that despite the two articles being written on the same news story they chose to focus on different aspects within it. For example, The Sun focuses on the fact that the troops plans had been altered. Also some of the information in the two articles does not match suggesting that one of them is incorrect.

My opinion:

I am focused to agree with Geoff Hoon that Britain should send the troops to this area, despite the fact it is dangerous because it is our duty as Americas ally. I do agree with The Sun that it is unfair to tell the troops one thing and then change it.


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  • Good job. What do you think of all this both the media coverage and what happened? by Sarah Hodges on this entry

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