Papers Still Deem Reality of War ‘in Poor Taste’

Editor & Publisher‘s Joe Strupp (9/4/09) has an update on U.S. papers’ “mixed reaction to the controversial Associated Press photo distributed today of a Marine who died in combat in Afghanistan last month.” The picture’s inclusion in “a group of images taken by AP photographer Julie Jacobson” predictably was “blasted” by Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, whose censure came via “a formal letter of complaint.” Strupp reports that the St. Petersburg (Fla.) Times ran the photo on its website with an AP story about the images, while the Commercial Appeal in Memphis provided an online photo gallery of all of […]


Breaking 60 Years of Hiroshima, Nagasaki Censorship

Hiroshima in America author Greg Mitchell (Editor & Publisher, 8/6/09) has taken a hard look at “the suppression of film and photographic evidence of the atomic attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki” that “would play a key role as America embarked on a nuclear era with severe impact still with us today.” He gives us a history of how, “in the weeks following the atomic attacks on Japan 64 years ago and then for decades afterward, the United States engaged in airtight suppression of all film shot in Hiroshima and Nagasaki after the bombings”: This included footage shot by U.S. military […]


Press Freedom ‘Lip Service’ vs. ‘de Facto U.S. Policy’

Reporting that “the Obama administration has recently paid a lot of lip service to freedom of the press, particularly around the case of Iranian-American journalist Roxanna Saberi, who was released May 11 from an Iranian prison,” Jeremy Scahill asks (Rebel Reports, 5/26/09) the simple question, “If Iran Freed Roxanna Saberi, Why Won’t the U.S. Release Journalist Ibrahim Jassam?” Part of the answer might lie in a media environment heeding former Col. Ralph Peters’ recent “essay for a leading neocon group calling for future U.S. military attacks on media outlets and journalists” along with “censorship” and “news blackouts.” Of course, Scahill […]


On the ‘Silver Lining’ of Coffin Photos

Media reporter DeWayne Wickham sees (USA Today, 3/3/09) the new Pentagon rules allowing photography of U.S. casualty coffins as “just the silver lining” around the dark cloud of a fact that “our free press is still being stage-managed by those who run the wars.” That the new regulations permit photos only “if the family of the war dead give permission” has Wickham acknowledging that “this will be a gut-wrenching decision for some families. But news organizations shouldn’t let such a policy–or the family’s wishes–dictate how they cover war news”: This month marks the sixth anniversary of the Iraq war. Nearly […]