Home Commentary and Analysis The Hazards of Media Focus on Major Events: What News Did We Miss Because of the Hurricanes?
The Hazards of Media Focus on Major Events: What News Did We Miss Because of the Hurricanes?

The Hazards of Media Focus on Major Events: What News Did We Miss Because of the Hurricanes?

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By James Lint
Faculty Member, School of Business, American Military University
Senior Editor for
 InCyberDefense and Contributor, In Homeland Security

For the past two weeks, the national news has been dominated by two severe storms. Hurricane Harvey struck Houston, Texas, and parts of neighboring Louisiana at the end of August. Similarly, Hurricane Irma caused major damage in the past several days in the Caribbean and Florida.

The only other noteworthy story that made the national news was the “unprecedented hack” of credit reporting agency Equifax, as reported by Bloomberg News. This cyber theft compromised the private information of about 143 million people.

What Other News Occurred in the World?

CNN World News covered Mexico’s strongest earthquake in a century, which killed at least 90 people. “The magnitude 8.1 quake, which was felt as far as Mexico City and Guatemala City, was registered off Mexico’s southern coast just as heavy rains from Hurricane Katia lashed the east,” CNN said.

German Chancellor Seeks Fourth Re-Election

German Chancellor Angela Merkel announced Sunday that she will seek a fourth term when voters go to the polls on Sunday, September 24. Merkel is expected to face stiff competition from the anti-immigration Alternative for Germany party. This right-wing group wants to win its first seats in the Bundestag.

The election is particularly important because Germany and Merkel “are simultaneously viewed as the EU’s last hope and accused of foisting its own rules on Europe for its sole gain as export king and economic wunderkind,” according to Deutsche Welle Editor in Chief Ines Pohl.

North Korea Refuses to Tolerate More UN Sanctions

HanKook Ilbo, or The Korea Times, reported Saturday that Pyongyang has vowed not to tolerate fresh United Nations sanctions. The Korean Central News Agency, Pyongyang’s official news outlet, reported that North Korea “will watch every move of the United States as Washington pushes to impose new U.N. sanctions on the regime for its latest nuclear test.”

Choe Hui-chol, a North Korean vice minister of foreign affairs, said, “We will not take even a step back from the road of our option, but keep bolstering the nuclear deterrence for self-defense to defend our government and people from the U.S. nuclear war threat.”

“The U.S. should never forget the position of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea as a full-fledged nuclear power possessed of ICBM together with A-bomb and H-bomb, and the DPRK will keep watching every move of the U.S,” Choe added.

Myanmar’s Rohingya Escape Ethnic Hostility by Taking Refuge in Bangladesh

“An estimated 270,000 Rohingya have sought refuge in Bangladesh over the past two weeks, the U.N. refugee agency said on Friday,” according to a Reuters report. The news agency called it “a dramatic jump in numbers fleeing violence in neighboring Myanmar’s Rakhine State.” The Rohingya are a minority group in Myanmar, formerly known as Burma.

“The latest flight of Rohingya began two weeks ago after Rohingya insurgents attacked security force posts in Myanmar’s Rakhine State. That triggered an army counteroffensive, in which at least 400 people died,” Reuters said.

Print and Online Media Must Work to Promote More Diverse News Content

As Thomas Jefferson said, “Whenever the people are well-informed, they can be trusted with their own government.” But in today’s society, where there is a wealth of information, people must assess what they see more objectively and seek out other news to stay well-informed.

Get started on your Homeland Security Degree at American Military University.

Also, it’s always best to corroborate any news story or bit of information with other sources, whether there is a plethora of news or a media concentration on one major event. Critical assessments of the news give readers a better and more informed picture of the world.

About the Author

James R. Lint recently retired as the (GG-15) civilian director for intelligence and security, G2, U.S. Army Communications Electronics Command. He is an adjunct professor at AMU. James has been involved in cyberespionage events from just after the turn of the century in Korea supporting 1st Signal Brigade to the DHS Office of Intelligence and Analysis as the first government cyber intelligence analyst. He has 38 years of experience in military intelligence with the U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Army, government contracting and civil service.

Additionally, James started the Lint Center for National Security Studies, a nonprofit charity that recently awarded its 45th scholarship for national security students and professionals. James was also elected as the 2015 national vice president for the Military Intelligence Corps Association. He has also served in the Department of Energy’s S&S Security Office after his active military career in the Marine Corps for seven years and 14 years in the Army. His military assignments include South Korea, Germany and Cuba, in addition to numerous CONUS locations. In 2017, he was appointed to the position of Adjutant for The American Legion, China Post 1. James has authored a book published in 2013, “Leadership and Management Lessons Learned,” a book published in 2016 “8 Eyes on Korea, A Travel Perspective of Seoul, Korea,” and a new book in 2017 Secrets to Getting a Federal Government Job.”