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Read some excerpts from various articles that
discuss the faking of the statue pulldown.
Click the links to read the entire article.
Last night I heard that the U.S. military is bringing not only embedded press with them
when they enter, but also 3,000 Iraqis who very well might become "embedded dancers"
frolicking in the streets to demonstrate how jubilant Iraqis are to be "liberated." Should
this happen, we only hope that there will be a few journalist who will document the truth.
The feeling here is anything but joyous and jubilant." http://electroniciraq.net/news/625.shtml
ABC's "Nightline" of April 11 closed with a report titled "The Art of Framing" by Robert
Krulwich. The segment's opening shot showed tight framing of people jumping on the Hussein
statue, and then pulled wide to reveal a mostly empty public square- just as you see in the
photo posted on this page! This is a familiar tactic of the US networks- showing biased
coverage 100 times, and then covering their butts by doing one quick "mea culpa." But hats
off to ABC for their mea culpa- their CIA plants must have left early for the weekend. http://sf.indymedia.org/news/2003/04/1598451_comment.php#1599276
Unlike most of these, the toppling of the statue was partly staged. Several efforts were
made to get it right.
Consternation must have been felt in Washington and London when two Marines - doubtless
remembering their forefathers on Iwo Jima - scaled the statue to wrap the head in the Stars
That was not the picture the world was supposed to see. This was a war of liberation, not a
war of conquest.
One can imagine the political movie directors in the Pentagon wanting to scream down the
hot-line to the field commander telling him to get rid of it.
The Marines tried again with an Iraqi flag, provided by the crowd. No, no, the director
must have shouted again. We cannot show the world a shot which presents us toppling the
Iraqi flag - only toppling Saddam.
Eventually, the Marines got it right and pulled the statue over. It turned out to be
hollow, failing to tumble with a satisfying crash but slumping to the horizontal - rather
like the regime.
At last the US and Britain had the clear, simple image they wanted. Saddam's fate may still
be uncertain but his statue had been torn apart live on television and Baghdadis had danced
on the pieces. http://www.nzherald.co.nz/storydisplay.cfm?storyID=3400674&thesection=news&thesubsection=wo
Several photographs publicized by an antiwar web site shed light on the way the American
media is manipulating images of the war in Iraq to give the false impression that the vast
majority of the Iraqi people are joyfully welcoming the invasion and occupation of their
country by US and British troops.
These photographs, available on the web site of Information Clearing House show that the
toppling of a statue of Saddam Hussein in Firdos Square, given massive publicity in the US
and international media April 9-10, was a stage-managed affair.
As transmitted to the world by US television and newspaper reports, the pictures from
Firdos Square purported to show a mass of enthusiastic Iraqis hailing the US military and
trampling on a gargantuan bronze statue of Saddam Hussein. Hours of television time and
pages of newspaper coverage were devoted to these pictures, with accompanying commentary
comparing the scene to the bringing down of the Berlin Wall in 1989 and the liberation of
Paris in 1944.
The first photograph on the Information Clearing House site is a wide-angle shot
encompassing the entire expanse of Firdos Square, rather than the narrowly focused, closely
cropped framing used in the mass media. It shows that the “crowd” surrounding the statue of
Saddam Hussein is anything but massive, and that the square itself has been surrounded by
US Abrams tanks, cutting it off from the rest of the city. . .
. . .The Los Angeles Times quoted one Iraqi bystander who said that while some Iraqis in
the square were praising Bush in English to the American media, others were denouncing the
US president in Arabic. “Today I saw some people breaking this monument,” he told the
Times, “but there were people—men and women—who stood there and said in Arabic: ‘Screw
America, screw Bush.’ So all this is not a simple situation.”
The cynical staging of “news” and manipulation of visual images in the service of
gargantuan lies is typical of both the Bush administration and the US media. It is the
technique of Madison Avenue applied to the justification of a program of aggression and
military conquest. In their Orwellian presentation, conquest is “liberation,” bombing is
“humanitarian aid,” and seizure of the world’s second largest oil reserves is “rebuilding
''It was the mother of all photo ops,'' says Norman Solomon, coauthor of ''Target Iraq:
What the News Media Didn't Tell You.'' Solomon saw yesterday's focus on the statue as an
''example of the tremendously subjective character of the media coverage in this war. . . .
What was notable was how few Iraqis were there. It was almost like a lethargic pep rally.
There was scarcely a pompom in evidence. Despite the best of efforts, it had a kind of
low-budget staged quality as though a movie was being shot but they couldn't get any