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Topic(s) Matched: Army Issues, Coalitions/Multinational Operations, Interagency Operations, Joint Issues, National Security Strategy, Policy Issues, Strategic Leadership and Command, Strategy, Campaign Planning, Operations

Title: Reporters on the Ground: The Military and the Media's Experience During Operation Iraqi Freedom

Published: October, 2003

Author(s): PROF Michael Pasquarett

US Army War College

Executive Summary: During the planning for Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) the Department of Defense (DoD) developed an embedded media program that planned for large numbers of embedded reporters throughout military units. Unlike Vietnam in the 1970s, this program resulted in television reporting from within Iraq, especially from those reporters embedded with front lines units, almost instantaneously. The speed that these reports made it on the air often outpaced the military's communication channels. Although it gave the American citizens an immediate close up report of what their armed forces were doing, it handicapped media analysts and stateside reporters in their ability to put the raw reporting from the field into a larger context. Conversely those TV journalists supplying these spectacular reports and engrossing pictures from the front line were also handicapped in that they were reporting in a vacuum, unable themselves to obtain any kind of perspective or context.



Paper: Reporters on the Ground: The Military and the Media's Experience During Operation Iraqi Freedom