Mass media materials as a source for the study of the problems of the Middle East region

Abstract. This paper examines the role of the media in the process of studying the political situation in the Middle East. Currently, the region under study is relevant, and has attracted the attention of researchers. The interest aroused by the fact that throughout its long history, the Middle East remains one of the most important political, economic, religious and cultural centers. The paper referred to the works of Russian and Western researchers such as A.Millarda, P.Akopova, Maurizio Ricci et al. 

Currently, topical issues are developments in the Middle East region. Concerning the region it can be admitted that the history of the Middle East dates back to the time of “the birth of human civilization in the Middle East” [1]. Throughout its long history the Middle East has been one of the most important political, economic, religious and cultural centers.

It should be noted that the modern political map of the Middle East was formed after World War I when the Ottoman Empire was divided into a number of separate states. One example of the transformation of the political map of the Middle East is the formation of the State of Israel in 1948.

It is necessary to say that significant oil reserves in the Middle East have given new political and economic importance of the region in the XX century. For example, it is observed by the fact that in the mid-20th the active oil production is carried out in a number of countries in the region. A special role in the economic aspect played countries such as Saudi Arabia, Iran, Kuwait, Iraq and the United Arab Emirates.

If we turn to a brief historical overview, we know that during the Cold War, the Middle East has become a theater of ideological struggle between the US and the USSR, and now we see that, the region is politically unstable. Topical political issues in the Middle East are the consequences of the war in Iraq, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the civil war in Syria, the controversy over the genocide of Armenians, Greeks, Assyrians in Turkey. In the wider perception of the Middle East - conflicts and general unstable political situation in Pakistan and Afghanistan, Pakistan’s conflict with India over Kashmir, the threat of a US attack on Iran, the Georgian- Ossetian conflict. From a religious point of view there are strong sectarian differences among Muslims between Sunnis and Shiites, and inter-religious differences between Muslims and members of other religions.

Iraqi turmoil which is lasting for twelve years and the Syrian war which is being continued for four years is always perceived as regional developments, despite the fact what was happening throughout the Greater Middle East - from Libya to Afghanistan - and on the background of a large West confrontation and the Islamic world. But last year, after the formation of the “Islamic state” global dimension became leading rather than the regional: the caliphate as a terrorist organization is officially declared as a major threat to global security and has become the number one enemy for both regional countries and the world’s great powers.

Without going into details, we will mention a passage from Peter Аkopov’s material, which focuses on the creation of a new Caliphate. The author asks the question who were killed in Iraq? And here the answer should be: “... the Sunnis, whom the Americans removed from power, blew the Shiites, some Shiite rebelled against the Americans. The Civil War, along with the resistance to occupation. But then the Americans had gone. And soon during the “Arab Spring”, neighboring Syria flared, where the external incitement of internal contradictions led to a full-fledged civil war with the participation of foreigners, both individually as well as in the form of support for foreign states opponents of Damascus “[2].

Now, extremist influence by radical religious groups is more frequent. This phenomenon has already becomes cyclical in the world community. The Mass media daily transmits the events in the Middle East.

For example, on the site “Press Digest” Maurizio Ricci writes about the confrontation between the United States and Russia, which affects on the Mideast region. He writes: “... with Sunday the US Strategic Command has raised the level of air force and now not only the oil infrastructure are bombed but also oil tanks. As a result, Russian aviation attacks on these objects too” [3]. Also in this regard, Jay Solomon in the pages of The Wall Street Journal writes the following: “... U.S. eyes Russia-Iran split in bid to end Syria conflict. The Obama administration and European and Arab allies are seeking to peel Russian away from its alliance with Iran, a partnership that has bolstered Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Arab states have made clear to Mr. Putin that their support the cease-fire was conditional on a time frame being set for Mr. Assad’s departure” [4]. Next we see the action of the European countries in relation to the studied region. The press review reports about the beginning of massive bombing of eastern Syria by France. Under the blow fell the city of Raqqa, “the capital of the self-titled caliphate”. These operations are aimed at weakening ISIL groups. In accordance with this, Isabelle Lasserre on the pages of Le Figaro edition mentions Russian military intervention in the process of resolving the issue of Syria. The author notes that, a year after the start of air strikes against the coalition led by the United States kept attempts of ISIL threat in Iraq, but Syria came under the influence of the group [5]. This, raises the question will Russia resolve to strengthen the ground troops, considering that, this runs the risk of ineffective solutions. Analyzing media materials, the Europeans have questions: for what purpose Russia participates in this context, because we know that this superpower is involved in the consultations on the Syrian issue under the aegis of the USA, and at the same time negotiating with America’s allies for the sake of expanding its military presence in this country. In response to this, there is an argument presented by Josh Rogin & Eli Lake, in Bloomberg View publication: “... the United States is driving Mideast allies toward Putin. America’s traditional Middle East allies, having run out of patience with President Barack Obama’s policy in Syria, are now reaching out to a resurgent Russia – even though it is bolstering the very dictator so many of them have pushed to leave power” [6].

In Maurizio Molinari notes (La Stampa) refer to the confrontation of East and West, on the example of Israel and the EU relations. Alberto Flores marks on the United States and Israel meeting: “... the United States cannot do without a major ally in the region covered by the fire. The Jewish state cannot do without the military and economic aid, on which its survival depends... “ [7].

Explorer of the Middle East, Walid Phares in his article: “The revolution is coming. The struggle for freedom in the Middle East” writes that as a result of the attacks on September 11, 2011 and the subsequent attacks on the forces fighting for democracy in the region, a new historical window is opened sharply and unexpectedly [8]. Which, of course is difficult to disagree. If we recall fragments from the history of the struggle against extremist groups, it certainly recalls memories of the struggle of the West with the “Taliban” in Afghanistan and Saddam Hussein’s dictatorship in Iraq.

Consequently, we can see a struggle in the region between the forces supported by the US and focused on democratic changes, and the Islamists and jihadis’ seeking its political and electronic database.

Thus, we can say that the fate of the new world order is in the hands of the Middle East, which impacts on the imbalances in the world economic development. 



  1. Milliard A. Kolybel’ tsivilizatsii? Drevniy Blizhniy Moskva, 2000 [in Russ.].
  2. Akopov Pomereunichtozheniyakhalifatastanetponyatnoyegoproiskhozhdeniye. Vzglyad: Delovaya gazeta, 2015, 19 noyabrya [in Russ.].
  3. Richi M. Pod bombami – neft’ IGIL: voyna SSHA i Rossii b’yet po sokrovishchu al’-Bagdadi. Press Daygest, 2015, 19.11 [in ].
  4. Solomon, U.S. eyes Russia-Iran split in bid to end Syria conflict. The Wall Street Journal, 2015, 19 Nov. [in Russ.].
  5. Lasser, Izabel’. Siriya: nachinayut vyrisovyvat’sya predely rossiyskogo voyennogo vmeshatel’stva. Le Figaro, 2015, 6.11. [in ].
  6. Rogin, Josh; Lake, Yeli S is driving Mideast allies toward Putin. Bloomberg View, 2015, Oct. 27.
  7. Molinari, Mauritsio. Gnev Izrailya v otnoshenii YES v svyazi s markirovkoy tovarov? “Antiyevreyskaya diskriminatsiya”. La Stampa, 2015, 12.11 [in ].
  8. Valid Revolyutsiya gryadet. Bor’ba za svobodu na Blizhnem Vostoke. Moskva, 2010 [in Russ.].
Year: 2016
City: Almaty