Incredible and shameful.
A Reuters photographer has been caught doctoring photos of the war in Lebanon to make the damage resulting from Israeli strikes look worse that it really is.
After having been caught by bloggers, particularly Little Green Footballs, Reuters has admitted the deception and has suspended the photographer. Unfortunately, the photographer has not yet been fired, and this is the same photographer who took what appear to have been staged photos in Qana exaggerating the toll resulting from Israeli air strikes. Those photos had a huge impact around the world, resulting in tremendous international pressure on Israel to halt its effort to defeat the terrorists who are attempting to wipe Israel off the face of the earth.
Ask yourself this: Would Reuters lie to me for the purpose of undermining America's allies such as Israel by ignoring the stories that cast Israel in a good light and exaggerating the stories that cast Israel in a bad light?
Answer: Unfortunately, yes.
And ask yourself this: If Reuters would lie to me in that way, would other media outlets that I rely on for my news also lie to me in the same way?
Answer: Yes. (See updates below for an example of the Associated Press' use of two different photos of the same woman claiming that Israel destroyed her home on two completely different dates.)
And ask yourself this: Would these same media outlets also lie to me by ignoring stories that cast America in a favorable light vis-a-vis its enemies, and by going out of their way to build sympathy for some of America's enemies?
Sadly, yes. (Here's a recent example in which the Los Angeles Times worked overtime to depict a Hezbollah terrorist favorably.)
Finally, ask yourself this: If the mainstream media would lie to me in a way that undermines America and favors terrorists, how much longer is America really safe?
I'll leave you to answer that one for yourself.
Take your time answering, because you'll be living it.
It's bad enough that Israel is surrounded by enemies actively working to destroy it while most of the world either remains indifferent or actively undermines Israel.
Do the mainstream media need to add their heavy weight to the terrorists' side of the scale?
My readers, I fear for the safety of the innocent civilians of Israel, who demonstrated their willingness to live in peace with the Palestinians by yielding territory to them only to have their kindness met with thousands of rockets launched into civilian areas in Israel.
I increasingly fear for the safety of the United States too. Like Israel, the United States is despised by terrorists and totalitarians who are filled with jealous pride. And the United States has an additional problem that is far worse than Israel's -- we are badly divided within.
A large segment of America's current population -- including the immature, the naive, the radical left, and the mainstream media, are actively working to undermine the United States, starting with its commander in chief, continuing with the United States Armed Forces, and extending to every agency and system we have in place to protect our nation's security.
Unfortunately, the enemies of America, foreign and domestic, are making progress, and they are relentless.
A house divided cannot stand.
There is a solid core of Americans who are completely committed to our nation's safety and survival. We know how unique, precious and valuable is our liberty, our democracy, our republic, and our nation under God.
We who love America are strong enough and determined enough to handle the opposition around the world from the odd assortment of terrorists and nations filled with envy and rage: Al Qaeda, Iran, North Korea, Venezuela, Syria, Iraqi "insurgent" terrorists, Cuba, Hezbollah, and sometimes Russia and China, to name a few.
All that we can handle and still survive.
What may very well destroy us, however, is the opposition from within. Add that, and America is in mortal danger.
It may seem unthinkable for America to be badly damaged or destroyed, but remember this: Unthinkable things happen every day.
The collapse of the Soviet Union -- one of the world's great nuclear superpowers at the time -- was unthinkable -- until it happened.
The fall of the Berlin wall was unthinkable -- until it happened.
Four simultaneous airborne attacks on the United States Pentagon, the U.S. Capitol (presumably) and the World Trade Center, resulting in the mass murders of 2,996 innocent people were unthinkable -- until they all happened on September 11, 2001.
"Unthinkable" things happen all the time.
The time for playing games is over.
Americans had better wake up, rally, unite, and deal with those who refuse to unite, or we will live to see see far worse things than Israel ever has.
More at Left and Right (good animation to show the doctoring of the photo), Flopping Aces, Ace, My Vast Right Wing Conspiracy, Riehl World View, AllahPundit, Michelle Malkin, Gateway Pundit, Blue Crab Boulevard, A Blog For All, Wizbang, Captain's Quarters, RightWinged, The Volokh Conspiracy, WuzzaDem, neo-neocon, Blogs for Bush, Daled Amos, Right Wing Nut House, Blinq, Gates of Vienna, The Shape of Days, Iowa Voice, The Jawa Report, An Unsealed Room, The Indepundit, Liberty and Justice, Outside The Beltway, Moonbattery, Soccer Dad, Jihad Watch, Jay Currie, The Strata-Sphere, NewsBusters.org, Roger L. Simon, The Coalition of the Swilling, Donklephant, Atlas Shrugs, Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler, Secular Blasphemy, Don Surber, USS Neverdock, Say Anything and Cox & Forkum
Update 8/7/06: The Jawa Report has unmasked what appears to be another faked photograph from the same Reuters photographer, again apparently for the purpose of making what purports to be a picture of an Israeli F-16 "firing missiles" more sensational. (Further update 8/7/06: That story has just been killed as well. Here's the killed photo to the right.)
And it gets worse -- or the evidence just keeps getting stronger: AP seems to have used two different photos of the same woman standing in seeming grief and surprise in front of what is claimed to be her destroyed home in Lebanon. The problem is that the two photos are from different dates two weeks apart, and depict apparently two different homes.
And a Powerline reader has just discovered another separate instance in which Reuters used photos of the same building damage on two entirely different dates, falsely claiming that the second photo depicted new damage from an overnight raid.
And did you hear about the 40 people "massacred" in the southern village of Houla? Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora told Arab foreign ministers in Beirut that the attack “was a horrific massacre ... in which more than 40 martyrs were victims of deliberate bombing.” One little problem: it turns out that only one person was killed in the bombing, not 40. Gee, a minor discrepancy there.
To recap, in the last 48 hours we have learned that terrorists and their accomplices in the mainstream media have multiplied at least one death total by a factor of 40 and have reported the bombing of the same building at least twice and another woman's alleged loss of her home on two entirely separate days. And the Qana bombing, which resulting in photographs of dead children shown round the world? -- Now after further analysis of the evidence, there's good reason to ask whether a "rescue worker" shown at the scene carrying out dead bodies was actually a mortician who brought bodies of children from somewhere else to the scene to create the appearance of many casualties.
With this kind of fabricated multiplication, just how bad can the terrorists and their accomplices in the mainstream media make Israel look? It's an outrage and a horrible injustice to Israel.
Further update 8/7/06: Someone has kindly added this post to Digg. To give this post a bump in the Digg ratings, just click below. (If you're not a Digg member yet, you'll have to take a minute to pick a user name and password.)
By the way, please give this story a bump if you liked it, because certain elements are trying to "bury" this story -- not just my post, but any post mentioning the faked Reuters photo. They'd just as soon have everyone forget this. Don't forget it. A lot depends on knowing the truth and on making sure that others can't possibly miss it.
Remember, you may not have been born yesterday and neither was I, but there are high schools and college campuses filled with kids who were just born yesterday, figuratively and politically speaking. They will be voting in their first elections this year or next or the year after. Don't let them wallow in ignorance any longer than they absolutely must. Our country's future depends on having an accurately informed public. Hence the problem I and every other thinking person has with Reuters, AP, and most of the other mainstream media outlets who are letting their biases control what they do and do not report.