Wednesday April 12th, 2017

Papers Reviewed: The Sun, The Guardian, The Daily Mail, The Times

The Daily MirrorMirror

Topic of article: Crime

Headline: The terrorist’s lair

Author(s): Daily Mirror (newspaper)

Analysis: Show how normal yet evil the flat of Khalid Masood, the Wesminster attacker, is. Showing a mix of pictures, the Mirror uses reader’s fascination with crime photos to present the contents of Masood’s flat in a similar manner. They want the reader to look at his face and imagine him in his ‘lair’, painting him as an animal. The picture of a London scene hangs over the table, poignant reminder of his actions a few weeks ago and perhaps a reminder of the terrorist attacks of July 7th so many years ago? His actions were despicable and should never be forgotten, but it feels like a highly simplified impression of a complicated situation, with commentators content to print the word ‘terrorist’ above his picture and leave it at that. No need to think about any motivation now, or consider the ways in which the crimes of a foreign man are treated so differently to the crimes of a white supremacist, he hated freedom and leave it at that please, we don’t like thinking too much over here.

The GuardianGuardian

Topic of article: Politics, International Relations

Headline: Putin’s Syrian stance hardens as Tillerson heads to Moscow

Author(s): Emma Graham-Harrison (International Affairs), Julian Borger (Washington Correspondent), Spencer Ackerman (New York Correspondent)

Analysis: Report on the state of Russian relations with the West, in particular reference to the events of the past week, in setting the stage for the US secretary of state’s visit. The Guardian leaves the reader in no doubt that relations are currently strained between Putin and the leaders of the West. Alternating with a series of allegations from first Russia, about planted evidence, then the US, with fresh evidence of Assad’s guilt, the article describes the deteriorating situation as a ‘tailspin’. There is however an acceptance that where as before it seemed the West were unified in their approach to Russian indiscretions, in the form of sanctions, now it is the UK and US who stand alone in support of each other. For a long time it was expected that what the US decided to do in foreign policy would for the most part be followed by Europe and their associated countries. This was due in some part to the military and financial might of the US, and held up by claims that the US had shown it knew how to approach world matters. But as Putin reminded everyone, America’s track record over the past 20 years isn’t good and seems to be approached with caution by the rest of the world. The article is also concerned with the changes in tact that the Trump government has shown recently; once thought to be a possible bridge in building relations with Russia, they have now seemingly turned their back on this, and where once dismissive of Nato they now exhibit uncommon favour towards the organisation.

The Daily MailMail

Topic of article: Health

Headline: We’ll fight on to save Charlie

Author(s): Vanessa Allen (Correspondent), Sarah Rainey (Feature Writer), Jim Norton (North-West Reporter)

Analysis: Inform readers of the judge’s decision that the 8-month old child who requires ventilatory support to live may be legally removed from life-support, and that his parents have not given up on overturning the decision. The paper puts a large picture of the child in question, Charlie, and his father together on a bed staring at the camera following the judge’s decision. The picture is purposefully sombre but emotional, showing a father’s love for his child and imploring the reader to put themselves in the father’s position and consider their actions in his place. As many readers will be parents themselves this will surely not be a difficult thing and will raise a natural emotive response around protecting their child, and the actions of the family are surely natural and noble. However there is much that this story does not report in regards to the case, and this is likely due to the desired reaction from readers. The article does not mention the structural brain damage that doctor’s believe Charlie has suffered, something that no interventions, no matter their advancement, have been able to reverse. Nor does it mention that Charlie is nearly incapable of recognising his parents, so that although they believe there is some reaction he does not acknowledge the world around him as the picture would have you believe. And it does not describe the judge’s ruling in detail, which is much more magnanimous and understanding of the family’s situation than the simplified ‘allowed to die’ report would have many believe.

The TimesTimes

Topic of article: Politics, International Relations

Headline: Johnson stung over sanctions

Author(s): Sam Coates (Deputy Political Editor)

Analysis: Report on Boris Johnson’s attempts to get endorsement within Europe for new sanctions against Russia, and the current state of Russian relations in the West. The Times favours a more British-centric viewpoint of the recent events, leading with a dig at the current foreign secretary. The article paints him as both a poor negotiator with weak convincing abilities, unable to get Europe on board with the wishes of America and Britain, and as a ‘poodle of Washington’, bowing to every wish coming from the capitol. This is accompanied with a sub-title reporting on Trump’s spokesman’s claims that ‘even Hitler didn’t sink that low’ when describing the use of chemical weapons. Comedic if it wasn’t such a horrific piece of misinformation, the two countries have their recent failings placed alongside each other, perhaps to show how inadequate they are. The bullet point recap of the recent events gives a chaotic picture, and this is not helped by the further criticism of Johnson. Ultimately, the quote from the Italian PM gives the impression that Britain and America stand alone once again in their foreign policy expectations.

Front page images from: http://www.bbc.com/news/blogs/the_papers

Reviewed by: Sam Hewitt

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