Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Today's staged Hezbollah photos 8/30

Many of the photographs from Beirut prominently show the results of a graphic artist:

Beirut, LEBANON: A Lebanese woman sits on the wreckage of her apartment in a flattened building in devastated Beirut's southern suburb, 28 August 2006. AFP PHOTO/ANWAR AMRO (Photo credit should read ANWAR AMRO/AFP/Getty Images)

This is a bit more subtle than the egregious photo manipulations and stagings that were shown in Lebanon, but think about this:

Who is the intended audience for these posters?

The professional layout and especially the use of English all point to the obvious fact - that when Lebanon is no longer a war zone and Hezbollah can no longer control reporters directly, they can still create photo-ops that will be irresistable to some photographers. And the photographers are more than happy to take the bait.

That gigantic poster, with the picture of devastation followed by "Made in USA", was not cheap. It was not made in a garage. It was planned carefully and paid for with the entire purpose of not increasing Hezbollah's influence in Lebanon, but in manipulating world public opinion.

In fact, I imagine the Lebanese people would be quite insulted at a picture of their town in ruins followed by the words "The Divine Victory."