I have read the commentary this morning with great interest. While it is true that there are many Americans who are very sophisticated and wordly, unfortunately, the American media system is terrible about reporting world news. Has anyone noticed how we suddenly discovered Africa in the past two years? All of my American friends who visit Europe say to me that they are surprised to discover how much Europeans know about America. They attribute it to the importance that this great nation holds for the rest of the world. I also credit it to the European media system which is extremely comprehensive in its news coverage.
It is my understanding that the origin of the development of the Europeans' extensive international media coverage is economic and political in nature. When European countries had their colonies in the rest of the world, it was essential that they be able to keep up with the political and economic news concerning the areas in which they had business investments and wanted to retain influence in the political direction of these colonies. What was happening overseas obviously affected their political and business decisions back home. The established culture of the European news appetite has continued its tradition of thorough reporting of political, economic and humanitarian interests which Europeans expect to continue to receive.
I subscribe to the International Herald Tribune which has been my daily newspaper for the past twelve years. I read it cover to cover every day. I never realized how much I was missing in world news by living in the US, until I subscribed to this newspaper.