Advertisement

Comparing Coverage in Syria and Yemen: Qualitative Analysis

  • Amanda Guidero
  • Maia Carter Hallward
Chapter

Abstract

This chapter examines why Syria receives more attention than Yemen given the severity of humanitarian crises in both countries using content analysis of articles from purposefully selected media sources. The analysis focuses on multiple high-profile events in each conflict to assess how the media covers instances in which the use of force by state and/or nonstate actors results in humanitarian crisis. The results indicate that humanitarian issues in both conflicts receive similar—and high rates of—attention, but international law and international humanitarian law receive little attention in the media. The results also show that even in coverage on events that illustrate the humanitarian crises in Syria and Yemen and involve potential breaches of international humanitarian law, articles and international actors, including the UN and nongovernmental organizations, tend to refrain from discussing how state and nonstate use of force might violate those laws.

Keywords

Content analysis Qualitative methods Humanitarian law Humanitarian crisis Use of force 

References

  1. Al Arabiya. (2015, August 19). Syria govt attack on Douma a war crime: U.N. https://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2015/08/19/Syria-s-attack-on-Douma-a-war-crime-U-N-political-chief-says-.html. Accessed 27 May 2018.
  2. Al Arabiya (2016a, August 14). Coalition says deadly Yemen raid hit rebels, not school. https://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2016/08/14/Coalition-says-deadly-Yemen-raid-hit-rebels-not-school-.html. Accessed 21 May 2018.
  3. Al Arabiya. (2016b, April 30). Syrian opposition: Stop Aleppo violence. https://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2016/04/30/-Monstrous-violence-in-Syria-as-govt-pounds-Aleppo.html. Accessed 16 May 2018.
  4. Al Jazeera. (2015, June 27). ISIL on 24-hour ‘killing rampage’ in Syria’s Kobane. https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2015/06/isil-24-hour-killing-rampage-kobane-150626144824173.html. Accessed 16 May 2018.
  5. Al Jazeera. (2016a, December 26). Al Jazeera condemns arrest of its journalist in Egypt. Al Jazeera English. http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2016/12/al-jazeera-condemns-arrest-journalist-egypt-161225195713187.html. Accessed 9 April 2018.
  6. Al Jazeera. (2016b, July 21). Syria war: ISIL given ‘48 hours’ to leave Manbij. https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2016/07/syria-war-isil-48-hours-leave-manbij-160721100242517.html. Accessed 16 May 2018.
  7. Al Jazeera. (2017, June 18). Saudi coalition attacks on Saada market kill dozens. https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/06/saudi-coalition-strikes-saada-market-kill-dozens-170618105050865.html. Accessed 16 May 2018.
  8. Al-Haj, A. (2015, March 20). 137 killed in quadruple suicide attacks on Yemen mosques. Haaretz. https://www.haaretz.com/137-killed-in-attacks-on-yemen-mosques-1.5340392. Accessed 16 May 2018.
  9. Alhkshali, H., & Lister, T. (2016, January 18). Hundreds may be dead after ISIS abductions in Deir Ezzor. CNN. https://www.cnn.com/2016/01/18/middleeast/syria-deir-ezzor-isis/index.html. Accessed 18 May 2018.
  10. Almasmari, H., Alkhshali, H., & Mackintosh, E. (2017, August 26). Saudi Arabia calls deadly strike on Yemeni civilians a ‘mistake’. CNN. https://www.cnn.com/2017/08/25/middleeast/yemen-airstrike-sanaa/index.html. Accessed 18 May 2018.
  11. Balkiz, G., Ap, T., Moshtaghian, A., & Almasmari, H. (2016, August 15). Saudi-led coalition denies targeting Yemeni schools that killed 14 children. CNN. https://www.cnn.com/2016/08/15/middleeast/yemen-schools-bombing/. Accessed 16 May 2018.
  12. Basil, Y., & Hume, T. (2016, February 22). In Syria, dozens killed as bombers strike in Homs and Damascus, regime says. CNN. https://www.cnn.com/2016/02/21/middleeast/syria-civil-war/index.html. Accessed 16 May 2018.
  13. BBC. (2013, September 24). Syria chemical attack: What we know. http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-23927399. Accessed 16 May 2018.
  14. BBC. (2016, July 27). Syria: Deadly IS blast rocks Kurdish city of Qamishli. http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-36902604. Accessed 16 May 2018.
  15. BBC. (2017, October 22). Raqqa: US coalition ‘wiped city off earth’, Russia says. http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-41714754. Accessed 27 May 2018.
  16. Bell, S. R., Frank, R., & Macharia, P. (2013). Passenger or driver? A cross-national examination of media coverage and Civil War interventions. International Interactions, 39(5), 646–671.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Blitt, R. C. (2004). Who will watch the watchdogs? Human rights nongovernmental organizations and the case for regulation. Buffalo Human Rights Law Review, 10, 261–398.Google Scholar
  18. Botelho, G., & Shah, K. (2015, May 22). ISIS is ‘everywhere’ in Syria’s ancient city of Palmyra. https://www.cnn.com/2015/05/21/middleeast/isis-syriairaq/index.html. Accessed 16 May 2018.
  19. Capelouto, S. (2016, October 15). Saudi-led coalition admits to airstrike on Yemen funeral. CNN. https://www.cnn.com/2016/10/15/middleeast/yemen-funeral-strike-saudi-arabia/. Accessed 16 May 2018.
  20. Gardner, F. (2016, October 10). Yemen conflict: ‘Saudi-led coalition plane’ hit funeral. BBC. http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-37613440. Accessed 16 May 2018.
  21. Grinberg, E. (2016, July 20). U.S.-led airstrikes in Syria kill civilians, rights groups say. https://www.cnn.com/2016/07/19/world/syria-airstrikes-civiliancasualties/index.html. Accessed 16 May 2018.
  22. Gupta, P. (2017, September 23). Raqqa: ‘Seeing dead bodies is normal now’. Al Jazeera. https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/features/2017/09/raqqa-dead-bodies-normal-170923070320617.html. Accessed 16 May 2018.
  23. Haaretz. (2016a, October 9). Over 140 Killed, 500 Wounded in Airstrike on Funeral in Yemen, UN Says. https://www.haaretz.com/middle-east-news/over-140-killed-500-wounded-in-airstrike-on-funeral-in-yemen-un-says-1.5447478. Accessed 16 May 2018.
  24. Haaretz. (2016b, March 17). Saudi Arabia to scale down Yemen campaign. https://www.haaretz.com/middle-east-news/saudi-arabia-to-scale-down-yemen-campaign-1.5419107. Accessed 16 May 2018.
  25. Levs, J., & Yan, H. (2013, September 16). ‘War crime’: U.N. finds sarin used in Syria chemical weapons attack. CNN. https://www.cnn.com/2013/09/16/politics/syria-civil-war/index.html. Accessed 16 May 2018.
  26. McGrath, T. (2016, June 8). U.N. blacklists Saudi Arabia for killing kids in Yemen, then reverses decision. USA Today. https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2016/06/08/united-nations-saudi-arabia-coalition-yemen/85588502/. Accessed 16 May 2018.
  27. Ricchiardi, S. (2011). The Al Jazeera effect. American Journalism Review (online). http://ajrarchive.org/Article.asp?id=5077. Accessed 9 April 2018.
  28. Shane, S. (2017, April 7). Weren’t Syria’s chemical weapons destroyed? It’s complicated. The New York Times. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/07/world/middleeast/werent-syrias-chemical-weapons-destroyed-its-complicated.html. Accessed 21 May 2018.
  29. Tuysuz, G., & Visser, S. (2016, August 16). Airstrike hits Yemeni hospital, kills 14, aid group says. CNN. https://www.cnn.com/2016/08/15/middleeast/yemen-hospital-strike/index.html. Accessed 17 May 2018.
  30. Walsh, N. P., Tuysuz, G., & Hanna, J. (2014, October 28). Iraqi Peshmerga soon to enter Kobani to fight ISIS. CNN. https://www.cnn.com/2014/10/28/world/meast/isis-threat/. Accessed 16 May 2018.
  31. Washington Times. (2013, May 6). Syrian rebels used Sarin nerve gas, not Assad’s regime: U.N. official. https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/may/6/syrian-rebels-used-sarin-nerve-gas-not-assads-regi/. Accessed 16 May 2018.
  32. Xinhua. (2013, August 29). Roundup: Syria invites UN mission to investigate three more sites, Obama undecided on Syria attack. Accessed through Nexus Uni.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Amanda Guidero
    • 1
  • Maia Carter Hallward
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Interdisciplinary StudiesCreighton UniversityOmahaUSA
  2. 2.School of Conflict Management, Peacebuilding and DevelopmentKennesaw State UniversityKennesawUSA

Personalised recommendations