[QODLink]
THE LISTENING POST
The military and the media
Plus a look at the video war games that are putting youngsters in the line of fire.
Last Modified: 12 Jun 2010 09:42 GMT

This week The Listening Post brings you a special episode on the military and the media, from Hollywood shoot-em-ups to Pentagon-sponsored spin doctors. Plus a look at the video war games that are literally putting youngsters in the line of fire.

Propaganda is at its most effective when the audience does not know it is being manipulated and one of the best, glitziest examples of that is when propaganda is delivered on the big screen in the guise of a Hollywood blockbuster.

The US army, navy, air force, marine corps, coast guard, and even the department of defence itself have established a beach-head in Hollywood. For as long as there have been movies, the US government has collaborated with filmmakers to ensure that their view of the world was shared with audiences around the world.

From Frank Capra and Walt Disney to Steven Spielberg and Michael Bay, Hollywood directors have for many years consulted closely with the US government and military to bring greater authenticity to their movies. In return for their advice, personnel and even equipment, the US military gets a slickly produced feature length advertisement that airs across the world.

Our Newsdivide this week examines how the US military trades access and equipment in exchange for a hand in shaping the big-screen perception of America's armed forces, if not the country as a whole.

Quick hits from the media world in Newsbytes: War films that win accolades from critics but fall flat with audiences; puppets of the Pentagon - retired generals go on the offensive on television talk shows; and can GE, a company involved in making missiles in addition to TV comedies, be objective in their reporting of war?

Video war games

Our feature story this week takes a look at the video war games used as recruiting tools.

Modern warfare can at times resemble a video game, with technology that allows armies to launch attacks and watch the results from computer consoles hundreds or thousands of miles away. And game-makers are getting better and better at simulating the sights and sounds of the war zone experience.

The gaming shelves of video stores around the world are crammed with titles like Call of Duty are heavily influenced by contemporary conflict scenarios - often from the Middle East.

The Listening Post's Robin Armstrong examines a trend that is putting the graphic reality of war on the computer screens of young people around the world.

Ladies love a man in uniform, at least that is what the Ukranian army wants you to believe in this recruiting ad that pits a high roller against a heavily armed soldier. It is our web video of the week.

This episode of The Listening Post can be seen from Friday, June 11, at the following times GMT: Friday: 1230; Saturday: 1030, 2230; Sunday: 0300, 1930; Monday: 0030; Tuesday: 0630, 1630; Wednesday: 0130, 1430; Thursday: 0330, 2330.

Source:
Al Jazeera
Topics in this article
People
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
'Justice for All' demonstrations swell across the US over the deaths of African Americans in police encounters.
Six former Guantanamo detainees are now free in Uruguay with some hailing the decision to grant them asylum.
Disproportionately high number of Aboriginal people in prison highlights inequality and marginalisation, critics say.
Nearly half of Canadians have suffered inappropriate advances on the job - and the political arena is no exception.
Featured
Women's rights activists are demanding change after Hanna Lalango, 16, was gang-raped on a bus and left for dead.
Buried in Sweden's northern forest, Sorsele has welcomed many unaccompanied kids who help stabilise a town exodus.
A look at the changing face of North Korea, three years after the death of 'Dear Leader'.
While some fear a Muslim backlash after café killings, solidarity instead appears to be the order of the day.
Victims spared by the deadly disease are reporting blindness and other unexpected post-Ebola health issues.