10 August 2008

Embedded and then "disembedded" ...

An Iraqi girl after her parents were killed by American gunfire
in Tal Afar. Photograph © Chris Hondros/Getty Images.*

Just over a month ago I noted how the U.S. Military sought to censor photographer Zoriah Miller who'd been embedded with a unit of American Marines in Iraq. Recently The New York Times ran this extended story detailing how Miller's case is part of a broader pattern of what many journalists see as "a growing effort by the American military to control graphic images from the war." Among the photographers discussed in the article is Chris Hondros who was removed from the unit with which he was embedded (the new, ugly term for this seems to be "disembedded") for taking the image above. Not only are photographers prevented from depicting dead American soldiers (Miller's offense) but they apparently cannot show us the bloodied orphans we are creating in Iraq either.
PS: You can find an interview & slide show providing context for this image at Hondros's web page. Follow the link trail from "Images," to "Iraq," and then "The Tal Afar Incident - January 2005."

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Blogger Lee said...

There is no chance of photography influencing as it did in the past, im thinking of the likes of phillip jones griffiths whose images in Vietnam inc helped change public opinion on the war. I dont even think it is to do with the availability of images i believe that we are so used to these scenes of horror both in the real world and in the entertainment world that we increasingly fail to seperate the two and do not seem to be able to link the images to the reality of the lives of other poor souls. Todays culture also appears to me to be more apathetic than at any time and people seem to not want to force a change. At least not enough of us do.

11 August, 2008 17:10  

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