The Military-News Media Relationship: Thinking Forward

  • December 01, 1993
  • Dr Rod Lyon, COL Charles W Ricks, Prof William T Tow

Over the course of the next six months, the Strategic Studies Institute will examine the impact of the media's technological advances on strategic and operational level planning and policymaking, first in an overseas theater, and subsequently on decisions made at the national level. The first of these two studies recognizes the complexity of executing military operations under the scrutiny of a very responsive, high technology world news media. Given the volatile, unstable, and ambiguous environment in which armed forces can find themselves, the actions of field forces have a greater chance than ever before of affecting subsequent strategic decisions made at higher levels. The pressure on field commanders to "get it right the first time" is demonstrably greater than ever. The author intends that these thoughts provide commanders with an understanding of the high technology and competitive news media environment they can expect to experience and offers specific suggestions for successfully communicating with reporters.