From front lines to headlines: Explore how media shape our understanding of war

In this important campaign season, how the media portrays each candidate and the issues at large–including an Iraq war that has sharply divided Americans–will go a long way toward defining the outcome. With this new web resource from PBS, teachers can raise students’ awareness of the pivotal role the media has played in shaping our understanding of war throughout the last hundred years. “Reporting America at War” invites students to witness the significant wars of the 20th century–from the beaches of Normandy to the deserts of Iraq–through the eyes of America’s most respected news correspondents. Based on the three-hour documentary television series, this companion web site profiles the men and women who dedicated their lives to reporting under fire. Students can discover why President John F. Kennedy once tried to kick former New York Times reporter David Halberstam out of Vietnam; read how former CNN reporter Peter Arnett covered the bombing of Iraq from a Baghdad hotel; and hear the news as it was told by prize-winning journalists Walter Cronkite, Andy Rooney, and Edward R. Murrow. The web site contains a teacher’s guide with lessons on press censorship, message control, the power of pictures, and word choice. Other resources include a war timeline and links to related sites.

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