Worldfocus anchor Daljit Dhaliwal offers her take on the importance of international news to Americans.
What’s happening to international news? American viewers need quality information and analysis so that they can get a better handle on how the world is changing — and at the same time, changing their lives. But instead, mainstream international coverage is hemorrhaging and the shutters are coming down on overseas bureaus.
Over and over again, I read or hear that most Americans have no interest in what’s happening overseas, as if this is supposed to be some kind of justification for not telling them. Not that long along, I was invited to speak to a group of several hundred PBS viewers in Portland, Oregon. While nobody there doubted the importance of global news, several people talked about how the world is often presented to Americans — full of insurmountable problems and at times even frightening. With better information, it doesn’t have to seem that way.
I believe that if most Americans don’t care, its partly because they’ve been short-changed into thinking that what happens in the far-flung corners of the globe has no bearing on their lives. Well, we are in the middle of a global economic meltdown that sent shockwaves throughout the world, as well as fighting wars in two foreign lands, trying to broker peace in the Middle East and looking to ”reset” the button with a former superpower.
The U.S. has a leadership role, whether we like it or not. Americans need to be more engaged with the world than ever, but to do that there has to be some a level of public understanding about global events.
That’s what we try to do every weeknight on Worldfocus. As a journalist and a consumer of international news, it’s gratifying to be a part of program that is shining a light on global events — not just the day’s big stories, but those that are under-reported or ignored because they are deemed too complex or not ”sexy” enough. In my view these stories are the real gems because they surprise and enlighten.
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– Daljit Dhaliwal