Defend Our Marines – Moonbats Want Blood

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January 14, 2007

Gruesome photographs of dead Iraqis, allegedly killed by US Marines in Haditha, will soon be made public. That is, if the leaks keep coming and the anti-war crowd has its way.

The photos were given to the Washington Post by the enemy within. An unnamed “defense official”. He or she gave the Post the entire Naval Criminal Investigation Service report into the incident at Haditha.

On January 7, the Post published, Marines’ Photos Provide Graphic Evidence in Haditha Probe. “Among the images,” according to the article, “there is a young boy with a picture of a helicopter on his pajamas, slumped over, his face and head covered in blood. There is a mother lying on a bed, arms splayed, the bodies of three young children huddled against her right side. There are men with gaping head wounds, and a woman and a child hunkered down on their knees, their hands frozen around their faces as if permanently bracing for an attack….Post editors decided that most of the images are too graphic to publish.”

A better reason not to publish the photographs is that they may not be legitimate evidence. They may have been posed. An enemy who would behead an infidel would have no qualms about shooting a corpse in the head.

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No matter. The anti-war crowd is salivating over photographs that could turn the stomach of Americans, and turn more people against the war.

The leader in this effort is the blog, All Spin Zone (the kind of blog where the Bush Administration is called “the regime”). In an entry from January 8 entitled, When the media gags itself, Richard Blair leaps to the conclusion that the photos are evidence of a My Lai-style massacre and wants them published now. He gave the e-mail and phone number of the Washington Post ombudsman, Deborah Howell, so that the Moonbats could shriek their demands at her.

The Washington Post responded today in a piece by the ombudsman, Covering Death, Here and in Iraq. Ms. Howell writes:

Scores of readers wrote — probably driven by a blogger — to ask that The Post run more photos from Haditha, the city where several Marines are accused of having killed civilians, many of them women and children. Military reporter Josh White obtained Naval Criminal Investigative Service reports, as yet unreleased, so The Post alone has the photos.

Tim Collier of Gardiner, Maine, wrote: “A newspaper is more than just a vehicle for entertainment and commerce. Its highest purpose is news: to inform on important issues of the day. There are iconic photos from previous wars, such as the shot of the Vietnamese police commander executing the captured VC guerrilla in Saigon during the Tet offensive, that are widely recognized as making a major contribution to public discourse simply by virtue of their publication.”

Two other pictures were mentioned frequently — one of a little girl running from napalm and the picture of the dead after the My Lai massacre. The Post ran versions of all on Page 1.

Five Haditha photos were published, the most newsworthy a Jan. 6 Page 1 photo of dead bodies near a taxi, showing that the victims did not appear to have been fleeing, as some claimed.

Photos of the bodies of accident or crime victims are not run — unless “there is a clear journalistic purpose” — out of concern for the “dignity of the deceased,” Downie said. The rest of the photos did not meet that criteria, he said. I viewed those photos and agree with him. They were not iconic photos. They were just gruesome and sad.

The photographs will be introduced as evidence at the courts martial of the Haditha Marines. In the meantime, the leaker still has copies. How long will it take for them to be displayed at an anti-war rally near you?