Media Issues

Facing threat of prosecution, Guardian editor testifies before UK parliament

By Chris Marsden, 4 December 2013

British officials are threatening the Guardian over its decision to publish exposures of intelligence agencies’ electronic spying against the people.

Australian media denounces exposure of Indonesia spying operations

By Will Morrow, 3 December 2013

Under the banner of the so-called war on terror, the mainstream media has embraced its role as an effective auxiliary arm of the state.

The New York Times, Obamacare and the war on the elderly

By Kate Randall, 3 December 2013

According to an opinion piece in Sunday’s New York Times, the answer to the “crisis” of people living longer is “to let death have its day.”

UK’s Privy Council used to steamroller press regulation

By Chris Marsden, 1 November 2013

A Royal Charter to regulate the press is a major attack on media freedom and will be used to censor revelations like those of whistleblower Edward Snowden.

Guardian faces parliamentary investigation over Snowden revelations

By Chris Marsden, 18 October 2013

The most significant support for state persecution of journalists, newspapers and whistleblowers such as Snowden again comes from the nominal “parliamentary opposition”, the Labour Party.

Embittered row between UK Labour Party leader Ed Miliband and Daily Mail over his father Ralph

By Julie Hyland, 8 October 2013

The Daily Mail’s right wing hatchet-job on the father of UK Labour Party leader Ed Miliband has become a political embarrassment to the entire ruling elite.

Germany: Die Zeit editor advocates massive war in the Middle East

By Peter Schwarz, 19 September 2013

Under the headline, “A human rights war is also war,” Joffe outlines a scenario tantamount to a violent military conquest and decades of colonial subjugation of the entire region.

A whiff of fascism—German tabloid demands war against Syria

By Peter Schwarz, 16 September 2013

The Bild newspaper’s comment castigating the US president for his alleged impotence in Syria has fascist undertones.

German election debate: A media spectacle to prepare a right-wing government

By Ulrich Rippert, 4 September 2013

The television debate between the two candidates in the German election was revealing above all for what was not said.

Tariq Ali’s false account of the suicide of Adolf Joffe

By Julie Hyland, 4 September 2013

Although unacknowledged, Tariq Ali’s comment in the Guardian newspaper was timed to coincide with the 73rd anniversary of Trotsky’s assassination, with the purpose of slandering the co-leader of the Russian revolution.

Obama and media manufacture pretext for attack on Syria

By Bill Van Auken, 30 August 2013

In their attempt to make a case for a US attack on Syria, the Obama administration and the US media find no lie too stupid, no contradiction too glaring.

German media beats the drum for war against Syria

By Ulrich Rippert, 28 August 2013

Liberal newspapers in Germany are spreading shameless propaganda in favor of war against Syria.

The New York Times and Manning’s prison sentence

By Thomas Gaist, 23 August 2013

The New York Times published an editorial Wednesday defending the verdict against Manning while suggesting a slightly reduced prison sentence

Guardian editor says newspaper forced to destroy hard drives

By Thomas Gaist, 21 August 2013

Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger has warned that the UK wants “to scoop up everything, to store it all, and to master the internet,” as British authorities defended the detention of David Miranda.

Advertising giants merge to hedge against economic downturn

By Kristina Betinis, 31 July 2013

The merger of transnational corporations Publicis and Omnicom creates the world’s largest advertising conglomerate.

The US establishment swoons over the royal birth

By David Walsh, 23 July 2013

The American news and entertainment media went into a frenzy Monday on reports that the Duchess of Cambridge had gone into labor and later in the day gave birth to a baby boy.

The Guardian and Edward Snowden

By Robert Stevens, 22 July 2013

Under conditions in which the US has launched a global manhunt to seize Edward Snowden, Britain’s Guardian newspaper has called for him to “answer to the law.”

NSA, European intelligence agencies work closely together

By Peter Schwarz, 9 July 2013

The claim by European governments that they were unaware of the extensive wiretapping undertaken by the NSA US intelligence agency is simply a lie.

The US media and the case of Edward Snowden

By Barry Grey, 2 July 2013

Prominent news personalities have joined in the campaign against Snowden and gone even further, baiting journalists who are assisting Snowden in his exposures.

US government spying campaign having “chilling effect,” AP president says

By Thomas Gaist, 22 June 2013

The seizure of Associated Press phone records by the US government has had the intended effect of intimidating would-be whistleblowers.

Journalist Michael Hastings dies in car crash

By David Brown, 20 June 2013

Michael Hastings, the journalist whose article in Rolling Stone led to the removal of General McChrystal from command of NATO forces in Afghanistan, died in a fiery car crash early Wednesday morning.

Nation magazine, ISO silent on Boston lockdown

By Tom Mackaman and Barry Grey, 30 April 2013

One searches the TheNation.com and SocialistWorker.org in vain for an article seriously addressing—much less condemning—the police-military lockdown.

Media hysteria grows over Boston bombing

By Barry Grey, 18 April 2013

While the nation, including the people of Boston, have remained calm, deeply saddened and shocked by the bombings as they are, the media and their leading personnel present a picture of disorientation and panic.

Media rush to judgment in Boston Marathon bombing

By Barry Grey, 16 April 2013

At least three people were killed and 144 wounded, including 15 with critical injuries, by two bomb explosions in downtown Boston.

Fresh arrests in UK’s News International phone-hacking scandal

By Dave Hyland, 21 February 2013

Rupert Murdoch’s attempt to distance himself from the illegal phone-hacking scandal engulfing his media empire has suffered a serious setback.

Greek journalist acquitted for leaking list of wealthy potential tax dodgers

By Robert Stevens, 3 November 2012

Kostas Vaxevanis has been found innocent of breaching data privacy laws by a three-judge panel in Athens.

BBC’s drama on UK riots banned

By Julie Hyland, 20 July 2012

A court order has banned the BBC from showing a dramatised film on the riots in London and other cities last August.

The New York Times makes the “moral case” for drones

By David Walsh, 19 July 2012

”The Moral Case for Drones,” published in the New York Times on July 14, seeks to justify the assassination program run out of the Obama White House.

BBC world news editor: Houla massacre coverage based on opposition propaganda

By Chris Marsden, 15 June 2012

BBC world news editor Jon Williams has admitted that the coverage of last month’s Houla massacre in Syria by the world’s media and his own employers was a compendium of lies.

British journalist “set up to be shot” by Syrian rebels

By Richard Tyler, 12 June 2012

Alex Thomson, chief correspondent for Channel 4 news, claims Syrian rebels deliberately set up his news team to be shot by the Syrian Army.

Newspaper staff strike in Australia against job losses

By James Cogan, 1 June 2012

In the face of the opposition among their workforces, both Fairfax Media and News Limited are nevertheless pushing ahead with the restructuring of their operations.

Toronto Star’s Heather Mallick endorses “murderer” Obama

By Carl Bronski, 19 May 2012

In a May 14 column in the Toronto Star, liberal writer Heather Mallick explains that given a choice between Republican contender Mitt Romney and drone strike “murderer” Barrack Obama, she would definitely choose the latter.

Anders Breivik and the Guardian: Suzanne Moore’s “sympathy for the devil” moment

By Chris Marsden, 26 April 2012

UK columnist Suzanne Moore has produced an opinion piece that expresses her understanding towards the xenophobic sentiments that ultimately gave rise to the mass murder committed by Anders Breivik.

Thatcher papers show how Murdoch’s media domination was secured

By Dave Hyland, 27 March 2012

The private papers of the former prime minister, Margaret Thatcher, have been opened to the public.

Australian mining magnate buys controlling interest in Fairfax Media

By Richard Phillips, 17 February 2012

Gina Rinehart’s media investments are aimed at promoting her own self-interest and securing greater political influence for the mining industry.

UK Parliamentary Select Committee continues cover-up of Murdoch scandal

By Robert Stevens and Chris Marsden, 20 July 2011

The appearance of Rupert and James Murdoch before the British Parliament’s Culture, Media and Sports Select Committee was a piece of well-choreographed political theatre.

Why did UK police declare death of News of the World whistleblower “not suspicious?”

By Chris Marsden, 20 July 2011

When the former News of the World reporter Sean Hoare was found dead Monday at his home in Watford, north of London, the immediate response of the Hertfordshire police was to issue a public statement declaring his death to be “unexplained but not thought to be suspicious.”

Commercial rivalries underlay conflict with Murdoch’s media empire

By Dave Hyland, 19 July 2011

The explosive divisions that have erupted within ruling circles surrounding the News of the World phone hacking scandal and the events leading to its exposure have from the start been fuelled by economic rivalries.

Murdoch scandal spreads

Britain’s police chief resigns over relations with News International

By Chris Marsden, 18 July 2011

Britain’s senior police officer, Sir Paul Stephenson, was forced to resign following the exposure of corrupt relations between Rupert Murdoch’s media empire and the London Metropolitan Police.

Arrest of Rebekah Brooks takes hacking probe one step closer to the Murdochs

By Chris Marsden, 18 July 2011

On Sunday, Rebekah Brooks, the former News International chief executive, became the tenth person to be arrested in connection with the News of the World phone hacking and police corruption scandal.

BBC journalists’ strike hits all UK service’s major news programs

By Robert Stevens, 18 July 2011

On Friday journalists at the BBC struck for 24 hours to protest 387 job losses at the World Service and BBC Monitoring.

Former Prime Minister Gordon Brown: Murdoch’s News International operated a “criminal-media nexus”

By Chris Marsden, 16 July 2011

The resignation of Rebekah Brooks is only the latest indication of an ever-widening crisis facing Rupert Murdoch’s media empire, News Corp.

FBI to investigate allegations News Corp. hacked 9/11 victims’ phone records

By Kate Randall, 15 July 2011

The FBI has opened an investigation into allegations that Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. tried to obtain phone records of victims of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

The Murdoch hacking scandal and class “justice”

By Julie Hyland, 14 July 2011

Two weeks into the latest stage of the scandal over phone hacking and other illegal activities by Rupert Murdoch’s News International group in Britain, revelations continue to pour out, each more damaging than the last.

UK hacking scandal yields new reports of criminality by Murdoch press

By Chris Marsden, 13 July 2011

New revelations have emerged that former prime minister and chancellor Gordon Brown was targeted by private investigators working for Rupert Murdoch’s Sun and Sunday Times newspapers.

Murdoch and the rule of the oligarchy

By Chris Marsden, 11 July 2011

The ongoing exposure of systematic hacking of thousands of phones and computers by employees of Rupert Murdoch’s News of the World lifts the lid on the rampant criminality of the corporate and political elite.

Former top aide to British prime minister arrested in Murdoch hacking scandal

By Julie Hyland, 9 July 2011

Andy Coulson, British Prime Minister David Cameron’s former director of communications and a former editor of Rupert Murdoch’s News of the World, was arrested yesterday and questioned over phone hacking and bribes paid to police officers.

News of the World phone hacking scandal escalates

By Paul Bond, 7 July 2011

The disclosure that an investigator working for the News of the World may have hacked the mobile phone of murdered schoolgirl Milly Dowler has intensified the political crisis surrounding the hacking scandal.

Journalist Robert Fisk faces libel action for pointing out Bahrain-Saudi alliance

By Jean Shaoul, 27 June 2011

On June 14, Bahrain, the tiny island kingdom in the Persian Gulf off the eastern coast of Saudi Arabia, announced that it is to sue the Independent newspaper for libel over an article written by its veteran Middle East correspondent, Robert Fisk.

Obama on “60 Minutes:” A political assessment

By Bill Van Auken, 10 May 2011

In his first and so far only interview since the assassination of Osama bin Laden, US President Barack Obama spent half an hour on the CBS News program “60 Minutes” reveling in the details of the extra-judicial killing.

The killing of Osama bin Laden: Obama’s “historic moment”

By David North, 4 May 2011

After Bin Laden had been liquidated, the White House and the media moved quickly to orchestrate the celebration of what was, in fact, an extra-legal state killing.

Further legal action possible in News of the World phone hacking scandal

By Paul Bond, 22 April 2011

The arrest of senior journalists, a limited admission of liability by News International, and the possibility of a further police investigation into illegal payments to officers have deepened the crisis surrounding the NoW phone hacking scandal.

AOL buys Huffington Post for $315 million: So much for America’s “progressive” media

By David Walsh, 8 February 2011

The announcement that AOL (formerly America Online), the internet services and media company, is purchasing Huffington Post for some $315 million in cash and stock is a commentary on the “progressive” media in the US.

Murdoch’s News of the World phone hacking forces resignation of Andy Coulson

By Dave Hyland, 26 January 2011

It was announced last week that Andy Coulson had resigned from his job as Conservative Prime Minister David Cameron’s director of communications.

News of the World hacking scandal throws spotlight on Murdoch media empire

By Julie Hyland, 20 January 2011

The private investigator at the centre of allegations of phone hacking by Murdoch’s News of the World has reportedly admitted that executives at the newspaper were aware of the practice.

John Pilger’s The War You Don’t See: An indictment of news reporting as state propaganda

By Paul Mitchell, 4 January 2011

John Pilger’s The War You Don’t See examines the media’s role in wartime and asks whether it has become part of the propaganda machine of the state.

Britain’s Guardian embraces the Tories’ austerity measures

By Chris Marsden, 13 November 2010

On July 1, 2008, the WSWS drew attention to the broader significance of the support extended by prominent writers for the Guardian and Observer to Conservative MP David Davis.

National Public Radio fires Juan Williams

By Patrick Martin, 23 October 2010

National Public Radio fired long-time analyst and Fox News commentator Juan Williams Thursday, declaring that his remarks on the Fox program “The O’Reilly Factor” had “crossed the line” into anti-Muslim bigotry.

Murdoch phone hacking scandal engulfs all Britain’s major parties

By Jean Shaoul, 22 September 2010

A desperate damage control operation is underway as further allegations emerge about the extent of the illegal phone hacking at the Rupert Murdoch-owned News of the World.

German media attack WikiLeaks

By Johannes Stern, 6 August 2010

The German media and political parties are seeking to downplay the significance of the documents published by WikiLeaks, while simultaneously attacking the website for publishing them.

Liberal television host Rachel Maddow solidarizes herself with US military in Afghanistan

By David Walsh, 15 July 2010

The visit by MSNBC news program host Rachel Maddow to Afghanistan in early July was as revealing as it was repugnant.

CNN fires senior Mideast editor over comments on cleric

By David Walsh, 9 July 2010

CNN’s firing of Octavia Nasr, its senior editor for Middle Eastern affairs, for expressing respect for a Shiite cleric, is a right-wing, cowardly act.

Britain: Murdoch’s News of the World censured for bugging on an “industrial scale”

By Jean Shaoul, 11 March 2010

A report by the Culture, Media and Sports Select Committee has exposed the contempt that the mass circulation Sunday newspaper, News of the World (NoW), part of Rupert Murdoch’s media giant News International, has for basic democratic rights, parliament and the rule of law.

Australian officials exclude WSWS from reporting on Pacific Islands Forum

14 August 2009

In a blatant act of political censorship, Australian officials organising the Pacific Islands Forum (PIF) denied media accreditation to World Socialist Web Site journalists, Patrick O’Connor and Richard Phillips, to cover the three-day event.

Iran, the media and the World Socialist Web Site

By Joe Kishore, 26 June 2009

The various TV commentators and print reporters—to say nothing of the newspaper columnists—have become open partisans of the oppositional candidate in Iran, who happens to be the candidate favored by the United States.

BBC bows once again before the pro-Israel lobby

By Jean Shaoul, 23 April 2009

The BBC Trust has bowed before its pro-Israeli critics by accepting the validity of criticisms of two articles by its Middle East editor, Jeremy Bowen.

Guardian journalist on Obama’s election: An “armed insurrection” averted

By Chris Marsden, 10 November 2008

One of the most extraordinary statements made on Barak Obama’s victory in the presidential elections was by Martin Kettle in Britain’s Guardian newspaper.

Britain: The furore over the BBC’s Brand and Ross broadcast

What constitutes an “appalling lapse in standards”?

By Julie Hyland, 1 November 2008

What are the issues raised by the furore over the antics of BBC talk show hosts Jonathan Ross and Russell Brand, which has dominated the British media for the last week?

The US media: a critical component of the conspiracy against democratic rights—Part 7

Conclusions about the media in general, the liberal press in particular

By David Walsh, 13 January 2001

This is the final part in a series of articles on the ideological and political role of the American media.

The US media: a critical component of the conspiracy against democratic rights—Part 6

Who is the Wall Street Journal's Robert Bartley?

By David Walsh, 8 January 2001

This is the sixth in a series of articles on the ideological and political role of the American media. The seventh and final article on the role of the liberal press will be appearing in the coming week.

The US media: a critical component of the conspiracy against democratic rights—Part 5

Media ownership and concentration

By David Walsh, 27 December 2000

This is the fifth in a series of articles on the ideological and political role of the American media. Part one appeared on December 5, part two on December 7, part three on December 16 and part four on December 19.

The American media: a critical component of the conspiracy against democratic rights—Part 4

Television personnel: a few profiles

By David Walsh, 19 December 2000

The world of television news analysis in the US is composed of individuals with pro-establishment and essentially right-wing views and connections, or liberals and “moderates” who continuously accommodate themselves to the right. Here are some of the figures who commented on the recent post-election crisis and attempted to shape public perceptions of the extraordinary events.

Pentagon pressure behind CNN firing of Peter Arnett

By Barry Grey, 22 April 1999

CNN's firing of Peter Arnett, the Pulitzer Price winning journalist who achieved international acclaim for his on-the-spot reporting from Baghdad during the Gulf War, sheds further light on the subordination of the US media to the military and intelligence establishment.

April Oliver speaks

Fired CNN journalist on dismissal of Arnett: "They will do anything to stem the flow of information"

By Barry Grey, 22 April 1999

The World Socialist Web Site spoke on Tuesday with April Oliver, who produced the CNN investigative report "Valley of Death" which aired last June. Oliver and her co-producer Jack Smith were fired by CNN when they refused to disavow their exposé of US use of sarin nerve gas in a secret special forces raid into Laos in 1970 (Operation Tailwind). Peter Arnett, who narrated the TV report, caved in to pressure from CNN executives and repudiated the story. He was publicly reprimanded by CNN at the time, and has now been fired. (See accompanying story.)