Sunday, March 8, 2009

Saigon Falls to North Vietnamese

The second news story I chose to analyze is the fall of Saigon to the North Vietnamese. In a Time magazine article there fall of Saigon the story is riddled with verbose language and unsupported facts. There is little or no attribution and the writer of the story cites no sources. References are made to Vietnamese officials and Americans however there are few facts aside from a crushed economy that seemed to fluctuate with the instability of the city. Contemporary news stories that compare to this are the stories we receive out of Iraq and Afghanistan every day.
An article written in the Los Angeles Times carried many more sources and cited several different sources within the first few paragraphs. The writer for the Times clearly puts a lot of emphasis on other journalism sources such as Reuters and the Associated Press. In the book Discovering the News they note this change in the style of journalism, which occurred during this period. The citations of United States government sources come farther down in the story because in fact American newsmen stayed on in Vietnam after the soldiers and diplomats had fled, therefore who better to make news judgments.
The Times article also cites a Vietnamese journalist further down in the article. Both articles seem to put some emphasis on style that is by no means objective. It is clear that the have taken on the responsibility to report the news in the way they think best describes the situation or tells the story and there seems to be some kind of slant to it. The amount of credit they give fellow journalist is apparent in the framing of both the Los Angeles Times Story and the Time magazine story. Sources such as Reuters the Associated Press and even Vietnamese journalist come before government sources and carry more weight. At the time there was a switch in what was commonly seen in reporting and this was prevalent.
The slant that the reporter put in the Los Angeles Times story was that, the Americans had not only left but left many political refugees to fend for themselves. The story the Time magazine writers published was one of a Saigon engulfed by utter Chaos and confusion as the result of war. There will undoubtedly be similar stories in the years to come when American troops leave Iraq to rebuild itself in the wake of a long and ineffective stay.

1 comment:

  1. interesting take on the analysis of time magazine and the los angeles times. i definitely am intrigued by the topic choice for the reason that i've written a couple papers on the vietnam war and the immigration experience that followed. i can see where you're coming from in this post as far as the slants that come with different journalists and how they choose to frame what they write. and i like the comparison to the current war happening right now. it will be very interesting to see how things pan out once US troops are completely pulled out of the middle east. perhaps this will even bring forth a whole new huge immigration experience again. insightful perspective of the articles!