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Cold War on the AirwavesThe Radio Propaganda War against East Germany$
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Nicholas J. Schlosser

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780252039690

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252039690.001.0001

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Building a Rival Fourth Estate: RIAS’s Campaign against East Germany

Building a Rival Fourth Estate: RIAS’s Campaign against East Germany

(p.47) 3 Building a Rival Fourth Estate: RIAS’s Campaign against East Germany
Cold War on the Airwaves
Nicholas J. Schlosser
University of Illinois Press

This chapter considers the development of models for news broadcasting at both RIAS and the stations of the German Democratic Republic (GDR). By this time the station had aimed to establish itself as a rival fourth estate in East Germany in order to compete with the official news organs of the Socialist Unity Party. Yet in performing this task, the station's staff confronted a range of apparent contradictions; in attempting to resolve these, RIAS crafted a style of journalism that drew on principles it had forged during the Berlin Airlift: it eschewed neutrality in favor of engagement, but worked to insure the news it broadcast was accurate. It also built a professional staff of reporters who, for a variety of reasons, felt a strong personal investment in seeing the collapse of the East German Communist regime and the reunification of Germany.

Keywords:   news broadcasting, East Germany, Socialist Unity Party, German reunification, German Democratic Republic

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