Le Top 5 de l'actualité américaine (2-7 Décembre) selon le Pew Research Center:

Actualités États-Unis

A Nuclear Surprise Puts Iran in the News

As the year went on, and Congress and the White House battled for control of war policy, the debate over Iraq remained a top story. So far in 2007, it has filled about 8% of the newshole according to PEJ’s News Coverage Index, making it the second-biggest story behind the presidential campaign. And even as tensions have mounted between the U.S. and Iran—over Iraq and Tehran’s nuclear program—that subject has been dwarfed by the Iraq debate. Thus far in 2007, the conflict with Iran has accounted for only 2% of the NCI newshole.

But last week, in a sign of how circumstances and geopolitical threats have changed, a surprising new assessment of Iran’s nuclear program was the second-biggest story of the week, filling 11% of the newshole from Dec. 2-7. For the same week, coverage of the policy debate over Iraq, a conflict that has seen a recent drop-off in violence, fell to only 2% of the newshole.

“U.S. Intelligence reversed itself today on Iran’s nuclear ambitions,” declared anchor Jim Lehrer in the opening moments of the Dec. 3 PBS NewsHour. The new National Intelligence Estimate—which seemed to allay fears about the near-term need for military action against Iran—concluded that Tehran had stopped work on a nuclear weapons program in 2003 and seemed “less determined to develop nuclear weapons than we have been judging since 2005.”

While making clear that Iran’s intentions were still unclear, the report not only overrode previous intelligence that Iran was “determined to develop nuclear weapons.” It also appeared to challenge some of the more dire warnings about Iran’s capabilities and intentions emanating from the administration.

“Report contradicts Bush on Iran nuclear program,” declared the headline on a Reuters story posted on Yahoo! News on Dec. 3. A Dec. 3 New York Times story ventured that “the conclusions of the new assessment are likely to reshape the final year of the Bush administration, which has made halting Iran’s nuclear program a cornerstone of its foreign policy.”

The report was enough to vault the U.S. conflict with Iran into second place last week behind the 2008 Presidential campaign, which filled 19% of the newshole and was the No.1 story for the fifth time in the last six weeks. (Some of the campaign coverage included the candidates’ response to the new intelligence on Iran.) Much of the presidential coverage last week also involved skirmishing in advance of the Iowa caucuses as well as Mitt Romney’s high-stakes Dec. 6 speech designed to reassure voters about his Mormon religion.

The third-biggest story of the week (at 7%) was the Dec. 5 shooting spree at the Omaha Nebraska mall that left nine people, including the teenage shooter, dead. The story was bigger on network TV (15%) than on cable (6%) thanks in part to a good deal of morning show coverage on the troubled life of the shooter, Robert Hawkins. The fourth-biggest story (at 6%) was the U.S. economy with the big news centering on the President’s plan to protect some homeowners from foreclosures. Next came domestic terrorism (5%), a good portion of which was consumed with the news that the CIA had destroyed tapes of interrogations of terror suspects.

A Nuclear Surprise Puts Iran in the News