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Shock of War Comes Home to 20-Somethings
|Contributor||Gerald Farinas |
|Last Edited||Gerald Farinas May 14, 2004 02:01pm|
|Media||News Service - Associated Press|
|News Date||Friday, May 14, 2004 08:00:00 AM UTC0:0|
|Description||Shock of War Comes Home to 20-Somethings |
The Honolulu Advertiser
For 20-somethings, this is their war now - the first they've experienced as adults, the one in which they are major players. Graphic images from Iraq are being circulated on their medium, the Internet, riveting a generation sometimes criticized for being disengaged. And many of those images involve people their age, among them 26-year-old Nick Berg, whose horrific death was captured on video - as well as young American soldiers mugging for the camera alongside naked, hooded Iraqi prisoners. "It's the first time we can't just point a finger at a leader and say 'You did this wrong' and instead have to say 'We're doing this wrong,'" says Sarah McAuley, a 24-year-old who lives in San Francisco. "The people shown abusing Iraqi prisoners are me, or at least not as distinguishable from me as some." The searing images have had that effect on many Americans. But some experts believe they will have particular influence on this generation and its view of the war.
There's the speed with which these war images are being circulated, says Abe Peck, a journalism professor at Northwestern University. "It's this media stream that 20-somethings and certainly 'teen-somethings' live in - and that just accelerates everything," he says. Access to such technology makes the Vietnam conflict - dubbed the nation's first "living room war" due to greater access to TV images - seem like the Dark Ages. Now it's instant war, in real time.