Early on in the Lebanon war, there was a photograph published by both U.S. News and World Report
Magazine, which according to captions published with the picture was of a burning Israeli jet, shot down by Hezbullah missiles. The blogosphere was quick to call B.S. on the
photo, and the widely-circulated story was that the photograph was actually that of a tire dump.
Well, it seems that the photographer responsible for taking the photograph, Bruno Stevens, has finally sounded off on Lightstalkers
, explaining the photograph and telling the true
story of how things ended up the way they did. He also notes that the site was not
a tire dump, but was rather an old Lebanese Army base that had either been hit by an Israeli jet, or by a misfired Hezbullah rocket (both possibilites he appears to have recounted in his original captions). The key point that Bruno makes is that, while he sent in a fairly balanced caption to accompany the photograph, the wire services rewrote the caption
completely, changing the pertinent facts surrounding the story. Where have we heard that before
Bruno's story is available in full at Lightstalkers, and I recommend checking it out, even though it is mostly written as a response to someone who has been alleging that he was somehow covering up a civilian massacre. My favorite part, and the one that's the most damning of Photo Editors everywhere, is this:
This caption clearly says that there is no proof that an Israeli jet had been shot down and that the objective was indeed to destroy a legitimate military target.
...A week later TIME published this image shot at the same time as the first:
They choose to caption it this way (I had NO control in this matter), they HAD my original caption: âThe wreckage of a downed Israeli jet that was targeting Hizballah trucks billows smoke behind a Hizballah gunman in Kfar Chima, near Beirut. Jet fuel set the surrounding area ablaze.â
I'm beginning to think that a major shakeup needs to happen in the editorial desks of just about every
wire service. For this to continually happen means that somebody sitting in the Editor's chair is either (a) deliberately trying to shape the news
, a gross violation of the public trust placed in them, or they are (b) too completely incompetent to distinguish facts and circumstances from the photographic and captional evidence presented to them.
Bruno, my hat's off to you for sharing your story so openly. Crossposted at NewsBusters
Others discussing this article: LGF, Michelle Malkin, Allahpundit, RiehlWorldView, ProteinWisdom, Ace of Spades, Radio Hounds, The Jawa Report
. Remember folks, you read it here
Tags: bruno stevens
Israel/Lebanon War 2006