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Published:October 17th, 2012 12:14 EST
Is Media Playing With Our Thoughts And Beliefs?

Is Media Playing With Our Thoughts And Beliefs?

By SOP newswire2

 

Media has now become an integral part of our life. There is no doubt on it being very advantageous and helpful as you are getting all kinds of information about happenings in the whole world by just sitting on your sofa and enjoying cup of tea while watching TV or reading a magazine or newspaper. But I would like to draw your attention towards some of the aspects thereof which can cause misunderstandings and can also modify our overall beliefs and perceptions. I am just going to share what goes through my mind every time.

Malala Yousafzai is a Pakistani Muslim girl and whatever happened to her really should be condemned and a strict action should be taken against the terrorists so that nobody could dare to even think of hurting anyone again. But I was surprised to see that media throughout the world has focused this issue at a very great level and this made me think, God forbid, what if she would have got injured in any incident of target killing in Karachi or what if she would have been a victim of a US Drone Attack? She might neither have been called  `Daughter of the Nation` nor media might have given any attention to her, neither Obama (US President) might have offered air ambulance nor would Ban Ki-moon (Secretary General of UNO) have bothered. Her name might just have lost in the number of casualties.

The international media covered the Peace March initiated by Imran Khan for two consecutive days. This same media is used to brainwash people about the effectiveness of War on Terror and "accuracy` of American drone strikes killing  `militants` alone. By raising the issue in an extra ordinary way this march has shown the people of these countries, the other side of the story.

Clive Stafford Smith (who came from UK to attend this rally) writes in his article, We are sleepwalking into the Drone Age, unaware of the consequence:

During the day I shook the hand of a 16-year-old kid from Waziristan named Tariq Aziz. One of his cousins had died in a missile strike, and he wanted to know what he could do to bring the truth to the west. At the Reprieve charity, we have a transparency project: importing cameras to the region to try to export the truth back out. Tariq wanted to take part, but I thought him too young.

Then, three days later, the CIA announced that it had eliminated four militants. In truth there were only two victims: Tariq had been driving his 12-year-old cousin to their aunt`s house when the Hellfire missile killed them both. This came just 24 hours after the CIA boasted of eliminating six other "militants" " actually, four chromite workers driving home from work. In both cases a local informant apparently tagged the car with a GPS monitor and lied to earn his fee.

According to a major study released by Stanford University and New York University named  `Living Under Drones` only 2 out of every hundred killed may be militants and the fear is immeasurable.

Drones hover twenty-four hours a day over communities in northwest Pakistan, striking homes, vehicles, and public spaces without warning. Their presence terrorizes men, women, and children, giving rise to anxiety and psychological trauma among civilian communities. Those living under drones have to face the constant worry that a deadly strike may be fired at any moment, and the knowledge that they are powerless to protect themselves.

Just after the Peace March another drone attack takes place and kills 16 people. How many of these would be terrorist? May be all or even no one of these were terrorist. Is it a guessing game? Now where are those Human Rights Organizations?

Moreover I am very much surprised on the response of public as a whole on any issue. Our mind seems to be trapped by the media; they can divert our attention, direction of pointing finger and our overall perception in seconds. Yeah that`s true, we only understand and see what media shows us. Why do we reach towards conclusion without critically analyzing the situation from both angles? Yes we should be cautious and evaluative; if we can comment on every issue in the world in social media then we need to be critical thinker because our illogical or proof less comment can hurt a person, community, or even a nation who might actually be a victim, because every person in this world has a role and influence in society. Even this article might change your views about media, and you should employ skepticism to determine whether there is any unfair advantage that I would earn though this writing or am I working for another beneficiary having malicious objectives.

Actually this world is running after benefits, which makes me think that may be US Govt. paid international media to exaggerate Malala`s issue to extinguish the anger of people of Pakistan on the issue of Blasphemy of The Holy Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH) or to use this as an immediate cause to attack North Waziristan and if you notice, it really helped them.

I am not a regular writer, I was very upset by the comments of some Non-Muslims who reached to the conclusion swiftly after watching news about violence in some of the rally s in Pakistan on the blasphemy issue by saying that "All Muslims are violent and are terrorists`. I have few questions:
Who started the 1st World War? Muslims?
Who started the 2nd World War? Muslims?
Who sent the Nuclear Bombs to Hiroshima & Nagasaki? Muslims?
Who killed the millions of Red Indians in North America? Muslims?
Who took the millions of African people as slaves, of whom 88% died and were thrown in the Atlantic Ocean? Muslims?

First you have to define terrorism properly. If a Non-Muslim does something bad, it is a crime. But if a Muslim commits the same act, he is called a terrorist. Isn`t it double standard!!! There are good and bad, both kinds of people in every society. So it does not mean that you conclude whole society to be bad just because you noticed some of them to be involved in bad deeds or vice versa.

 

However, I believe it is MEDIA which made them think like that. Being an inhabitant of Pakistan I have myself seen in Lahore and have got information from my relatives in many other cities that thousands of rally s were protesting in whole Pakistan out of which only 4 or 5 were violent and media only covered those few violent rally s ignoring thousands of other huge peaceful rally s (More Photos and details about Ishq-E-Rasool Day can be seen by clicking here) . I can only guess the reason, may be media channels were paid to focus negative aspects by any dominant party having malicious intentions or interests and may be even such violent terrorists were injected by the same party (By party I don`t specifically mean any political party).

The scope of this topic is not only limited to news on US drone attacks and terrorism rather it also tends to include scandals about stars, politicians and other famous personalities. We need to think broadly and try to guess the intention behind printing a specific news and deliberately ignoring another. I would also like to quote an incident briefly that few months ago a person named Agha Waqar claimed to have invented a kit for cars which could run a car by using distilled water as fuel.Media really gave it hype, called Agha Waqar in talk shows and really appreciated his act and then suddenly after a week of publicity they came to know that this was a scam. Prof Atta-ur-Rahman exposed this fraud by showing scientific reality of this in his article The Water Car Scam. Here the point I want to make is that Our social media and our mainstream media are known for publishing news irresponsibly and without verification so we need to be careful while forming an opinion. May be Agha Waqar was right and he actually might have invented that but Govt. just did not want this technology to be accessed by general public, and obviously if you look into the matter carefully, the business of Petrol and CNG stations would swiftly collapse if that technology comes into action " "

 Yeah I agree it`s hard to escape from this confusion between right and wrong but in my opinion being patient, critical and evaluative is the best policy in every situation.

Muhammad Ali Ghina
editor.infospot@gmail.com

Sources of Information:

·         My Bit for Change

·         The Guardian

·         Reprieve

·         Pakistan Ka Khuda Hafiz

1. Photo of one of the thousands of Peaceful rally s in Pakistan