I was absolutely dumbfounded by this article, even after having multiple discussions in class about censorship and how incredibly complex the world of imaging and empathy is. The article covers the story of a freelance photographer who covered the Marines in Iraq, and then was “barred from covering” them once he published images of dead soldiers online. While coming from the perspective of the families, I can see how this may feel too graphic, too insensitive, and too much in general, the bigger issue of the lack of transparency and borderline manipulation of the public is incredibly important to be aware of.
The article contrasts the event to the Vietnam War, which was known for giving maybe TOO much “open access” to the photographers and journalists, but while this is a fair statement, applying the discussions and points brought to light at the beginning of the course, I still feel that the awareness of what is happening to citizens/soldiers from our country in war is important.
In discussing the photographer I mentioned above, Mr. Miller, the article states that “In Mr. Miller’s case, a senior military official in Baghdad said that while his photographs were still under review, a preliminary assessment showed he had not violated ground rules established by the multinational force command. The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the investigation was ongoing, emphasized that Mr. Miller was still credentialed to work in Iraq, though several military officials acknowledged that no military unit would accept him.” (NYTimes)