Comparative Frame Analysis of ‘War on Terror’: Content Analysis of USA and Pakistan’s Press

  • Shazia Hashmat PhD Scholar, Allama Iqbal Open University, Islamabad
  • Dr. Bakht Rawan Associate Professor, Department of Mass Communication, FM Radio Building, Allama Iqbal Open University, Sector H-8 Islamabad
Keywords: Framing, War on Terror, Newspapers, Coverage, Conflict.


This study explores the role of leading newspapers of both America and Pakistan on the war-on-terror (WoT). The comparative framing analysis of the WoT in the selected newspapers Dawn (Pakistan) and The New York Times (USA) was carried out. Content analysis in which Categorization Scheme was used with predefined categories that were made on the basis of Framing theory. Five different news frames are deduced by Semetko and Valkenburg (2000) i.e. attribution of responsibility, human interest, conflict, morality, and economics were looked at in the selected newspapers. The coverage and framing of USA’s press related to the war on terror were dominated by regional foreign politics especially the framing of Pakistan and its role in the war on terror. The mean length of the news stories in The New York Times (USA) was significantly more than Dawn. The New York Times (USA) carried a more negative tone than Dawn (Pakistan). Frames used in Dawn (Pakistan) and The New York Times (USA) did not have a statistically significant difference. The conflict frame was used more than any other frame in the coverage of WoT in both the newspapers. This study revealed that the coverage trend of media reporting on WoT in the press of both Pakistan and USA. Also how frames in the press used are subjective to the internal politics of country in order to receive a sense of legitimacy and support.