Journalists embedded in Iraq need to dig below surface, ask tougher questions, says military historian

Thursday, February 2, 2006

This week's attack that injured ABC News co-anchor Bob Woodruff and a cameraman in Iraq show the continued danger in the region. But journalists generally don't tell the full story, according to Geoffrey Wawro, director for the Center for the Study of Military History at the University of North Texas.

According to the Committee to Protect Journalists, 61 journalists have been killed since March 2003 in Iraq as a result of hostilities. That compares to 66 journalists killed in Vietnam between 1955 and 1975. Wawro says the reporters embedding with the troops know what the dangers are.

"You have to give them credit for embedding with an Iraqi military unit. Embedded journalists are essential to the coverage of the war, but the coverage doesn't go far enough," he says.

Wawro says that while it may be true that things in Iraq may be better that news reports indicate, the stories that are told are simplistically and don' t ask the hard questions.

"The media needs to (look at) the war as a military and strategic event, rather than just the emotional vignettes that dominate the coverage," Wawro says. "On the one hand, the reporters are covering the war, reporting on the things they see and do. But on the other hand, they are trying to make their own career. They are concerned about their marketability, and hesitate to make any strategic judgment about what they are seeing."

Wawro joined UNT's Center for the Study of Military History in the fall of 2005. Previously, he was the professor of strategic studies at the Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island. Wawro is also host and anchor of the History Channel and History International programs "Global View," "Hardcover History," "Hard Target," "History's Business," and "History versus Hollywood."

UNT News Service Phone Number: (940) 565-2108

Latest News

Monday, August 18, 2014

The initial enrollment period for the University of North Texas' new Eagle Express Tuition Plan ended with more than 4,600 eligible students signing up for the innovative, money-saving plan.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Researchers in Teen ST.A.R, or Teen Stress and Alcohol Research will examine the factors that may lead to adolescents starting risky behaviors, such as alcohol and substance abuse.

wind turbine
Monday, August 18, 2014

Carrollton company is turning to researchers at the University of North Texas to examine its newest wind turbine, which it hopes can solve a difficult problem -- harvesting power when wind speeds are low.

Scott Dikkers
Monday, August 18, 2014

Big names in entertainment are featured in the 2014-15 season of UNT'sMary Jo and V. Lane Rawlins Fine Arts Series, including musician Bobby McFerrin; actress Laverne Cox from the Netflix series Orange is the New Black; Scott Dikkers, founder of the satirical publication The Onion; and Bill Rosemann, creative director at Marvel Comics.

Geoffrey Rappaport
Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Rappaport will discuss how he is applying the Supercuts business model to dental care and will be joined by Soo-kyoung Ahn, a visiting research scholar in UNT's Global Digital Retailing Research Center, which is presenting the lecture series.