The Ghost of Snapped Shot

Or, welcome to my low-maintenance heck.

Finally, the qualifier!

Maths teacher Hussein Hayder smokes a tobacco water-pipe in his apartment in the heavily-bombed town of Srifa in southern Lebanon Wednesday, Aug. 16, 2006. Hussein's apartment was untouched, but up to 601 buildings in the town were either damaged or destroyed—according to a local Hezbollah official. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)
After all this time, we can finally point to a good example of a well-qualified caption. Take a look at this photo, pulled straight from the AP wires.

For the first time, I can point to a clear example where the press is properly qualifying its sources. We're told, according to Hezbullah, that "up to 601" buildings have been damaged. This, of course, can't possibly be confirmed in such short notice, though the additional odd building included in the count is somewhat humorous. There's little chance that we'll get anything close to an exact count, until well after "international forces" start arriving in the area, and I doubt we'll even hear the actual number then. What's even more impressive about this particular photograph is that it is attributed to the award-winning Ben Curtis, one of the photographers who participated in the Qana debacle.

Aside from the caption, we see a dark and thoughtful picture of this math professor. If it were up to the ominous tone of the image alone, the reader would only be able to guess that this poor gentleman lost his home. It's odd that Mr. Curtis used such an upbeat headline to describe such a dark image, but I suppose it could be a creative exercise in artistic expression.

In any case, it's good to see a slight ray of honesty in a caption. Let's hope that something negative about Professor Hayder doesn't come to light, or I'll have to retract all of these nice things I've said about Ben!


 Tags: ben curtis AP #Israel/Lebanon War 2006

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