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The media and international intervention
Author: Philip Hammond

The first major post-Cold War conflict, the 1991 Gulf war, indicated how much had already changed. Saddam Hussein had enjoyed Western support in Iraq's war against Iran in the 1980s, but was abruptly cast as the 'new Hitler' after his invasion of Kuwait in August 1990. This book is about how the media have interpreted conflict and international intervention in the years after the Cold War. By comparing press coverage of a number of different wars and crises, it seeks to establish which have been the dominant themes in explaining the post-Cold War international order and to discover how far the patterns established prior to the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks have subsequently changed. The key concern is with the legitimacy of Western intervention: the aim is to investigate the extent to which Western military action is represented in news reporting as justifiable and necessary. The book presents a study that looks at UK press coverage of six conflicts and the international response to them: two instances of 'humanitarian military intervention' (Somalia and Kosovo); two cases in which the international community was criticised for not intervening (Bosnia and Rwanda); and two post-9/11 interventions (Afghanistan and Iraq). There were a number of overlapping UN and US interventions in Somalia in the early 1990s. Operation Restore Hope was the first major instance of post-Cold War humanitarian military intervention, following the precedent set by the establishment of 'safe havens' for Iraqi Kurds and other minorities at the end of the 1991 Gulf war.

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Philip Hammond

. A third, again closely related, criticism is that the negative impact of international intervention prior to 1994 tends to be underestimated or ignored by most analysts. The RPF’s 1990 invasion was repulsed with French help, but although France had been a staunch supporter of Habyarimana’s one-party state during the Cold War, Western priorities in Africa had already begun to change. The watchword

in Framing post-Cold War conflicts
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Philip Hammond

definition, possess full sovereignty, international intervention is both necessary and legitimate. As we saw in Chapter 2, this was precisely the argument made about intervention in Somalia in the early 1990s. In the present context, emphasising that ‘For the last five years [Afghanistan] has not even existed as a functioning state’ and that ‘there are no state institutions worth speaking of in Kabul, Straw

in Framing post-Cold War conflicts
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Post-Cold War conflicts and the media
Philip Hammond

justification for this activism, however, were necessarily different from the past. This book is about how the media have interpreted conflict and international intervention in the years after the Cold War. By comparing press coverage of a number of different wars and crises, it seeks to establish which have been the dominant themes in explaining the post-Cold War international order and to discover how far the

in Framing post-Cold War conflicts
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Philip Hammond

could object to the idea that when a human rights or humanitarian emergency reaches a state of mass death, sovereignty should not be an obstacle to international intervention’ (African Rights 1993a: 57). They also argued that, in some respects, the intervention did not go far enough: ‘a major opportunity for a programme of disarmament … was missed’, they suggested, because the US showed insufficient

in Framing post-Cold War conflicts
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Framing post-Cold War conflicts
Philip Hammond

criminal courts, as well as being expressed through armed intervention. It is striking just how quickly this idea was established, appearing as a fully developed justification for international intervention in the 1992 ‘humanitarian mission’ to Somalia. Indeed, in retrospect, it is clear that the idea was already implicit in the notion of a ‘New World Order’ in which the US and

in Framing post-Cold War conflicts
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Philip Hammond

and Britain on 25 February, was sought at the UN. Three aspects of the debate in the run-up to the war are particularly interesting in relation to this study’s focus on the legitimacy of international intervention. Firstly, while the prospect of war gave rise to deep divisions and disagreements, opening a diplomatic rift between Europe and the US and provoking increasing anti

in Framing post-Cold War conflicts
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Philip Hammond

the ‘Serbian national psyche’. The Serbs were ‘taking on Nato’ in 1999, Walker suggested, because they were ‘haunted by the ghost of Lazar, the Serbian prince defeated by the Turks at the 1389 battle of Kosovo Polje (Times , 25 March). In the Mail , this type of explanation was often linked to doubts about the wisdom and efficacy of international intervention. A long

in Framing post-Cold War conflicts
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Robert Murphy

depiction of post-war crime. Unusually, there is a proper femme fatale , but as played by the crude, brassy Christine Norden, she hardly rivals her American sisters in crime. Like more blatant attempts to ape American models such as No Orchids for Miss Blandish (1948), Night Beat is an unsatisfactory melange of undigested and conflicting traditions. International interventions That

in European film noir