New Features Of Information Imperialism
Information is power. This is true. Information acting alone cannot create anything. But there is nothing that can be produced without information. The vast various power of information exists not only in developed countries but also in Africa too.
The recent civil war in Libya was a clear example of what information power can do even in Africa. The imperialist powers like their countries most. That is a good thing. They need oil and gas and Libya has large quantity. In order to accomplish their aims in Libya they first employed the great powers of information. Before the hot war, they fought with modern weapons; they waged successful psychological war. All manners of journalistic genres were employed to paint Maummar Gaddafi’s 42 years of rule as a monster. Gaddafi has no answers to the powerful propaganda of the West. And it is most likely that any African state facing a modern psychological warfare may have effective counter attack. Modern countries attacking know there will be no counter effective reply.
Though some countries like China, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan etc adopted policies in the UN committee on information technology, measures that will be friendlier to African, in the global use of space technology, the imperialist countries have their ways on this and other vital high technology based issues that affect the destiny of majority of mankind. The West always tells us, that the world has become a global village, because of information. But the truth is that the content of global information flow still remains Western-oriented. Only negative events in our African society attract attention of Western media organs. They are dangers posed by information flow dominated by the USA and other developed countries. It can even be urged that little in NIICO is in fact new, its essence is made up of old ideas and established principles which were just brought under a new umbrella. For example, the problem of global imbalance of information structures was recognised by the United Nations before any debate on NIICO. The UN’s economies and social council, ECOSOC, addressed the problem as early as 1961.
Many countries and organisations have contributed to the growth of new information order as part of decolonisation process.
The progressive trends in information flow will help developing countries use the great power of mass media for peace and national development.
The dangers of using the products of mass media of information for promoting hostility among countries are indeed bad. The main enemies of peace today are the forces of terrorism. Instances abound where leading terrorist groups such as al-Qaeda and Boko Haram place information about their evil activities in space and other digital information systems. Terrorism is evil and mass media of information has a duty to humanity to exposed terrorism in all its ramifications. It is an enemy of mankind and should not receive positive attention. Some progressive media experts have warned about the danger of negative use of information. It may hinder world peace and progressive development in the world.
Mass media experts believe the right way is for media to focus attention for peace and development, and protection of interests of less privileged in the world. Some progressive media experts also pointed out the close links between military industrial complex and an information propaganda complex or they gave some effective hints on how the media must work only for peace and progress.
By Dr. Ccuma Wilson