New Wars, New Media & New War Journalism: Professional & Legal Challenges
in Conflict Reporting



By: Stig A. Nohrstedt & Rune Ottosen
February 2015
Distributed by Coronet Books
ISBN: 9789186523961
222 Pages
$99.50 Paper original


In this book, the authors discuss media coverage of major conflicts, from the Gulf War in the 1990/91 to the NATO military operations in Libya in 2011 and now ongoing civil war in Syria. Through in-depth analysis of Norweigian and Swedish media coverage of the Kosovo conflict in 1999, the Afghanistan War from 2001, the Iraq War from 2003 as well as more recent conflicts, the authors claim that legal issues in especially problematic in relation to new forms of warfare involving extra-judicial killing by drones of targets in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Yemen and Somalia. While historically Sweden and Norway have had different security policy orientations, the tendency is toward the two countries becoming more closely oriented through Nordic defense co-operation and participation in the wars in Afghanistan and Libya.

The authors criticize mainstream media for under-communicating what security risks this support for the regime change strategies pursued by the US/NATO in the so-called 'global war on terror' implies for the Nordic countries. The book further discusses the challenges war and conflict reporting face when confronted with major security leaks through WikiLeaks and the classified information revealed by Edward Snowden. Theoretically, the findings are related to the theories of threat society, new wars and risk-transfer warfare as well as to Johan Galtung's theory of war and peace journalism. Analyses are inspired by critical discourse analysis as elaborated in Norman Fairclough's and Ruth Wodak's works.