Television: Battle on Two Fronts

As TV braces for combat, a pair of shows depicts how the media can (but don't always) affect war

As TV news bureaus send reporters TO boot camp and work graphic designers and theme-music writers overtime to get ready for Iraq, we're hearing an old truism again: that TV can change the course of a war. It can. But that doesn't mean it will. Any discussion of TV and war, for instance, starts with Vietnam. Yes, seeing the carnage soured Americans on the fight. But the conflict was still America's longest, ending years after the onslaught of body bags at dinnertime. As FX's timely movie The Pentagon Papers (March 9, 8 p.m. E.T.) shows, many of that war's most egregious...

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