Media Mashup: November 17, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-11-16 at 3.54.09 PMA Short-Term and Long-Term Strategy Against IS provides a solid analysis of what to do about the self-proclaimed Islamic State.

“The Paris attacks call for a significant adjustment in U.S., allied and global strategy to combat Islamic extremism. This reassessment must start with a recognition that the dysfunctionality of the Middle East — an outgrowth of Islam’s broader crisis of civilization — is the underlying cause of extremism and terror. IS can be defeated through tougher tactical measures, but the ultimate defeat of Islamist terrorism requires a long-term commitment and a comprehensive strategy by the world’s major powers, regional allies and local partners to normalize the region. The level of efforts required will likely be of the magnitude that it took to stabilize Europe and Asia throughout the Cold War.”

Polling Gone Wrong?

The Wall Street Journal reports: “In Gallup’s 1930s America, about 90% of those approached answered pollsters’ questions. Today’s Americans are less willing. The Pew Research Center reported that its response rate—the percentage of contacted households that yielded an interview—fell from an already low 36% in 1997 to 9% in 2012. That could increase the possibility that the people who are polled aren’t representative of the population sampled. Pew has studied this possibility and has found no significant effect—yet.

“Pollsters have responded by increasing the number of cellphone calls, which is expensive because under federal law they must be dialed by a person, not automatically by machine. Some polls are conducted partially or entirely over the Internet, which risks producing unrepresentative samples because Internet usage is higher among certain groups than others and because Internet respondents are in effect volunteers.”

See more at

 Truth or Fiction?

The always-engaging Victor Davis Hanson looks at what is true and what is false in the media, including recent films like “Truth.”

Christopher Harper is a longtime journalist, who reported in Europe and the Middle East. He teaches media law and international journalism. Send suggestions and tips to



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