JOURNALISTS AND SCHOLars have viewed the tragedy in Chechnya, the first major Russian military conflict covered extensively by Russian television, as an opportunity for independent media in Russia to demonstrate their strength and influence. Early examinations of public reaction to the Chechen crisis suggested that Russians were satisfied with the performance of domestic media. A nationwide survey of 1,528 adults in Russia from 15 January to 6 February, commissioned by OMRI's Audience and Opinion Research department (AOR), revealed that 60 percent of respondents trusted Moscow media coverage of Chechnya, while 37 percent did not.1

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