Friday, February 16, 2007

What he said:

Editors don't want to be seen hiding the truth; they give lots of other rationales for why they don't show the photos. Privacy. Not supportive of the troops. Bad taste. Possible desensitizing. The children might see. Embolden the enemy. Bad for morale. All good reasons, but also all dancing around the truth. If we were exposed to the images of the limbs ripped off children, soldiers with brains spilling down their worthless body armor, a lot more people would say, "Enough! This must stop!" The press understands the simple act of showing an image is antiwar, so in any attempt to be "fair and balanced" about the war they must NOT show real horrific images.

This administration is selling a product that no sane person would continue to buy if they knew the horrible truth about it. They might tolerate it for awhile if they can hold in their heads either fear for their own safety or good, noble reasons to kill humans and bomb children. But if the fear doesn't really exist and the noble reasons are shown to be a sham, a steady diet of gruesome images will quickly weaken any residual resolve.

Bush and Cheney keep the focus on abstract "truths" like freedom and independence. The media will use numbers, bar charts, and still photos of people in uniform to symbolize the dead. But you will never see the image of their faces contorted from a violent painful death.

Can an image change your mind about how you feel about something and then how you act? Yes. That is deepest reason real war photos are not printed in the mainstream press.

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