"In the end, the war in Iraq did not have the decisive impact on the election that many had expected," Michael Massing writes in the New York Review of Books. Why? Massing suggests that the American public may not have been "aware of just how bad things had gotten in Iraq." Of the many factors that shielded Americans from the "most brutal realities of Iraq," Fox News stands out. "The most striking feature of its coverage of the war in Iraq was, in fact, its lack of coverage," Massing writes. "A good example occurred on the Saturday before the election. That morning, the US military announced that eight Marines had been killed and nine others wounded in attacks in the Sunni Triangle. It was the highest US death toll in nearly seven months. After reading the news on the Web, I tuned in to Fox's 11 AM news summary. It made no mention of the dead Marines. The next hour was taken up by a feverish program on hot stock picks. Then came the noon newscast. After spending ten minutes on the Osama bin Laden tape, the presidential campaign, and the tight race in Ohio, it finally got around to informing viewers of the Marines' deaths. It then spent all of twenty seconds on them. As it turned out, that Saturday was a particularly bloody day in Iraq, with a series of bombings, mortar attacks, and ambushes throughout the country. Viewers of Fox, however, saw little of it."
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