The communications revolution has been used for war and has generated conflict even as it has increased inter-national communications and understanding. The innovations of the nineteenth century became central to modern warfare.
One consequence of the new technologies was that they increased the scale and scope of political and military control. All European states pursued these efforts to control communications in newly conquered territory.
The managerial revolution made possible by telecommunications also transformed the battlefield. Information was the key to consolidating and controlling warfare. Armies laid cables as they marched forward in the nineteenth century. Battlefields could be orchestrated by generals in the rear holding large amounts of information. Field-marshall von Schlieffen, would direct the battle from a roomy office where telegraph, telephone, and wireless signaling apparatus are at hand.
The centrality of communication to
national security meant that each
communications technology became an arena of Great Power competition and
rivalry. Telegraphy initially emerged during a period of relative Great
Power peace.13 States were willing to allow this important medium of
communication to be controlled by others (specifically by
Communications reduce the reaction time of governments and increase the pressures on central decision makers. Rapid communications can exacerbate international conflict. Tensions anywhere around the globe get instantaneously transmitted and magnified and are more difficult to allay. Instantaneous communications reduce the diplomatic room for maneuver, make it difficult if not impossible to wait for the course of events, and increase the costs and certainly the visibility of the costs of conflict.
Whereas communications technology had increased profits for financiers, manufacturers, and entrepreneurs during the nineteenth century as it lowered transaction costs, the same technology led to great efficiencies and increasingly effective strategies in ever larger wars in the opening half of the twentieth century.
Governments wanted to be able to keep secret their communications even as these forms of communication increased their ability to spy and gather information
The management of the radio spectrum has been one of the most important activities of the ITU. International agreements for the use of the radio spectrum have been necessary because radio waves do not simply stop at national borders. Governments have viewed the spectrum as an international common resource. Without international agreements for the management of the radio spectrum, interference could spoil its use for all users.
standoff meant that some of the most important battles between the
early 1950s as Cold War tensions escalated with the Korean War and other
geopolitical crises. The
1959 at the
World Administrative Radio Conference. The
Intelsat and the
created in 1965 as part of a geopolitical initiative of the
In a context of military, political, and technological competition
with the Soviets, the creation of an international satellite communications
system was a bold stroke. It offered other nations the benefits of improved
international communications in exchange for their aligning themselves with the
Predictably, the response to Intelsat's
creation divided along East-West lines.
Intelsat has grown from a single satellite in 1965 to a network of 14 satellites linking roughly 750 earth station antennas. Intelsat operates as a user-owned cooperative. By 1990 the Assembly of Parties consisted of 118 member nations with one vote each. A majority of the Assembly of Parties is required to ratify any major changes in the Articles of Agreement.
Most countries have specified that their public telephone and
telegraph (PTT) monopolies will act as their signatories. The
Organized as a global cooperative of the western world's telecommunications authorities, Intelsat developed satellite communications in a way that worked with, rather than against or around, each country's established telephone monopoly.
In the words of a former attorney for COMSAT, the Intelsat organization "was built around a fundamental concern of sovereign [nations] to control foreign communications in the interest of their national security. . . . The Intelsat space segment [was] structured so as to preserve sovereign control of the link from the sovereign's territory to the facility's theoretical midpoint."(2)
For the first 15 years of Intelsat's
In the 1970s, however,
Military security/National Security/Ideology & Propaganda
What do you think counts as Propaganda?
Propaganda and ideology:
Propaganda is not another term for ideology...
that they are different in theory and in emphasis; namely that ideology was focused upon an end/object: the coherence and presentation of its critique of other ideologies and society and its vision of a better society…and if it got a large audience, so much the better,
propaganda is a process of
persuasion by any means necessary – it does not have to worry about the
coherence of the message and the arguments a la ideology. If a pottage of
exciting images and sounds accompanied by the item/value that is being promoted
Equally we can look at the concept of mass society and its links to Propaganda – that is, esp from a sceptical European tradition that, the notion the emergence of a mass society where meaning attachments (class/community/status/traditions) are breaking down into the condition of anomie and detached individuals were open to adopting a new leader/messiah/life-plan.
Thus alienated mass man is open to any old cult/faith/form of fascism so long as they re-gain a sense of purpose/meaning..and this is as true of stuff – goods –consumables in their lives as it is of new leaders. US notions of Mass Soc were more optimistic – that it meant they were flexible and open to new positive ideas about better future society and ways that could be shaped by well-meaning elites.
But whichever, propaganda - the recruiting of support for ideas and visions can be seen as a function of mass society, that is, people without firm structured reflexively grasped and maintained values and beliefs. (Is this right?)
Theoretical Models of the relation between Propaganda and Power
Structural - centre-periphery (Russell/Dahl etc) - based on counter-factual argument (A gets B to do what they would not otherwise do). Propaganda is action of an agent upon a mass population
Post-structural: power is 'virtual' - a micro-physics - an analytics of power (Foucault) - Propaganda is multi-dimensional struggle
propaganda is a strategy of persuasion to a target population –
perhaps with core and periphery aspects –
seeking to inculcate into the population,
a positive image as well as a set of points (‘facts’) and beliefs
about a cause or group usually political or economic in character.
However, we have seen that prop is typically deployed as the function of a unitary voice (this OR that party)
...to a weakened often non-rational audience i.e. those who have suffered from socio-political or economic trauma and are susceptible to less than benign influences of siren anti-democratic voices
or to an audience made non-rational by the acquisitive temper of the modern consumerist psyche. (i.e. victims of advertising)
Whichever, propaganda seems to rest on a combination of unitary force and its audience. Inasmuch as the relation of power existing here is that of the dominant irresistible voice and the accepting receptive weaker mind we have the relation between propaganda and the syringe model of communications. Mass society theory posits the idea of the average mass man into who ears is dripped the persuasive tones of a singular ‘average’ message – one size fits all.
This approach to power is that of the A gets B to do what he would not otherwise do variety as well as being of the centre/periphery kind.
BUT…what if we were to take a rather more distributed, more post-structural theory of power – perhaps something like the idea of power that Foucault developed.
Power as multiple and as an analytics rather than a theory - that is to say, as a dynamic variable set of lines of force, utterance, statement, action that intertwine and bifurcate from all the other lines.
Seeing power as a kaleidoscope which can stabilise around certain typifying features and issues only to break up into varied disputes. In other words there is no centre to power. Yet it is always-already underway and power is not a definite act but an effect of the totality of lines of force. It is a variable image.
Communications, Information, Democracy...Propaganda in the Cold war period
Article 19 of the United Nations’ 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the UN’s 1946 Declaration on Freedom of Information declared information freedom a “fundamental human right
Post War consensus on the free flow doctrine weakened as U.S.-Soviet relations.
to deteriorate after
broadcasts like the
Freedom of information would become a flashpoint for international legal disputes between East and West, with the West promoting the free flow of information and the Soviets advocating the sovereign right of states to restrict it. These struggles over information law and politics would take place across a vast range of international forums, including the International Telecommunications Union (ITU), UNESCO, and the UN General Assembly.
Notwithstanding the West’s success in having radio jamming prohibited and the free flow doctrine recognized in numerous international documents and forums— every ITU resolution from 1947 onward condemned radio jamming—did little to deter Soviet jamming activities.
Radio wars and Propaganda.
The partitioning of Europe after the war, the partitioning of Berlin and an aggressive stalinist soviet union who wished to draw more countries under its sway meant that western powers who were ideologically opposed to communism anyway and who were worried that post-war Euro communism might let in commie govts felt justified in forming 1949 NATO of course resulted in the soviet response of forming the Warsaw Pact alliance.
Equally the Truman Doctrine set forth by
the U.S. President Harry Truman in a speech on
The ideological division between capitalism and communism as economic, political and social systems would be crucible in which the cold war at the propaganda end would be fought. So the language of prop would be organised around peace, justice, democracy, freedom, humanity….each side claiming their socio-political systems best fulfilled these notions.
Along with the broadcasts of the
American policymakers, including Kennan and John Foster Dulles acknowledged that the Cold
War was in its essence a war of ideas. The
The Soviets, who had already created a network of mutual assistance treaties in the Eastern Bloc by 1949 established a formal alliance therein, the Warsaw Pact, in 1955
VoA had been created for reflecting
American values and culture as propaganda during the war but
afterwards in a form of détente with
the VoA budget was slashed with strong feeling
that now the war had ended so should the
propaganda efforts. However, it survived and by the nid-50s was expanded to
Programming was broadcast from production
In 1947, VOA started broadcasting to the Soviet citizens in Russian under the pretext of countering "more harmful instances of Soviet propaganda directed against American leaders and policies" on the part of the internal Soviet Russian-language media,”
1950 resumption of Arab service, and 1952/53 increased services to
If the Cold War is to be fought in terms of politics and not military then:
The increasing anxiety in
RIAS – Radio in the American Sector (Berlin in 46) aimed at the german pop to counter soviet prop, May Day 1951 first proper brdc of Radio Free Europe, a station staffed by many exiles throughout it history was aimed at the satellite states and esp at Czecho as that was thought to be the EE state with the strongest orientation to democracy and therefore in the words of CD Jackson former operative in psy-ops in WW2 and now President of Nat Cmttee for Free Europe – sponsor of RFE- it may encourage defectors.
What marks out RFE in particular is that it was unashamedly propagandist rather deliberately and sometimes in a rather rasping anti-commie tone, discuss, attack, criticise their target countries.
The aggressive tone was often the work of EE exiles who because of their exilic status and feeling against commies really went for it. Puddington’s study describes ones of their brodcs ‘Peroutka’ as the brass-knuckles approach. Initially thinking that ‘in yer face’ anti-c would help contribute to a rapid implosion of a thoroughly nasty set of regimes, RFE and RL both had to calm down and had to accept that they were in for the long haul much as was the soviet bloc itself.
The people who were in the founding committee of RFE/RL such as George Kennan, Allen Dulles, and Frnak Wisner amongst others had ties to each other from university as well as from their days in the military and their links to each other as senior advisers in govt – in the case of Dulles, his bro was Sec Of St – the latter seeing the state of affairs as one in which Western Civilisation is on the defensive.
speech called ‘Project Truth’ condemning society use of propagandas – deceit
distortion lies, he said: “We must use every means at our command, private as
well as governmental to get the truth to other peoples.” The
The point here is that those who set up the operation were part of a US/State approach to Truman containment doctrine of which the a/c prop of RFE was a part. They took a globalising approach to Cold War politics and not an ideologico-intellectual or basic anti-Commie approach for the home audience as did the nascent neo-Cons stuff.
Their mindset was very much part of
a govt/admin high politics – centrally organised initiatives as such they were not concerned with
notions of folksy
fRFE knew of named person as having done terrible things to people in the East then they would name and shame them RFE was described as a citiens adventure in the field of psychological warfare.
RFE was a radio stations for
Crusade for Freedom – In line with the aggressive and covert aspect of radio prop one of t more peculiar episodes was CFF.
Oct 1950 a replica of the Liberty Bell – the Freedom Bell was displayed in
had announced the formation of Crusade FF in a national address and US citizens
gave their dollars to support. It ringing in
the actual relationship between McCarthyism and the
this RFE though not as much as VoA
came under fire usually individual brdcs
who were vulnerable as they were usually exiles and thus ultra McCarthyites could easily accuse
them of being commie as the ultra Fulton Lewis was want to do-calling one RFE
broadcaster a Stalinist collaborator and another ‘one of the greatest mass
murderers in history’ which takes them into the realm of the shock jocks of
today on Fox news. 1958-60. Oddly Lewis picked up the story that RFE was a
Often the was a case of one excitable exiles accusing another one via selling a ling to an Ultra McCarthyite type in some other media outlet.
in 1922 RM was the man radio service of the
RM used: openly identified source, and is characterized by gentler methods of persuasion than black propaganda (which purports to come from the opposite side to that which actually produced it) and grey propaganda (which has no identifiable source or author).
Propaganda and the
many ways the strategy for Cultural propaganda esp that funded by the
key agency hat was
Key to the idea of the true intellectual rather than one at their party’s call were the ideas of dependence from politics and commitment to you art so tat it does not pander to popular taste. Thus elitism and a kind of isolation from the world sets up a image of the pure artist untainted..
participants in Europe and the US within the
Schlesinger one of the great post-war
The Congress for Cultural Freedom
functioned as a clandestine endowment for the arts that promoted cultural,
intellectual, and artistic endeavours “in the West, for the West, in the
name of freedom of expression” (p. 2). The
the magazines funded by the agency were Survey, Preuves, Der
Monat, Partisan Review, and
the highly respected Encounter. She
also shows how the
Other foundations that served as conduits
the mere act of subsidizing artistic creations the
agency rewrote the ending of the ªlm to mute Orwell’s symbolic connotation of
capitalist exploiters and Stalinist revolutionaries. These examples aside, the
Koestler was sidelined for being
too passionate in his anti-Communism; the