Good reporting on U.S. foreign policy requires good reporting, period. As newspapers shrink and reporters get laid off, accurate American discourse about our actions in the world becomes less likely.
The best (worst) example is Iraq. Even before the Obama Administration began, flagging public interest intersected with shrinking media budgets to result in Baghdad reporting cutbacks.
In less expensive parts of the world, we can expect more of the same. As newspapers go belly-up, the pool of funds available to hire foreign correspondents is declining as well. Citizens of the Superpower who depend on mainstream media are going to have even less information about America’s global footprint.
But instead of watching our for-profit media institutions go out of business, maybe we should stop thinking of them in business terms. Liberal media critic Eric Alterman just published a fine column on a topic getting increasing play in some circles: the nonprofit newspaper.