Sunday, February 26, 2006


I was reading an article this afternoon about how the military tribunals are going to start up at the camp at Guantanamo Bay. But that's not what I want to address. The photo that appeared next to this article was a typical "Gitmo" photo that shows detainees in orange jumpsuits made to kneel in what looks like an uncomfortable position outside in harsh conditions. It's all according to the media's image of a harsh camp where wrongfully accused Joe Schmoes (or Arab Achmeds) are held in nasty conditions, outside, with lots of barbed wire and probably a few Abu Ghraib guards thrown in. Unfortunately for them, the reality is considerably different. The reality, as shown by these two pictures, is of a camp with conditions similar to a standard jail in the United States.

I doubt many of you have seen such pictures. It shouldn't be surprising, though. The slideshow I saw the picture in only had one picture that did not portray the image of "big eeeeevil U.S. military holding innocent Arab men prisoner." That picture was a stark one of a hospital bay. You're probably thinking that I had to dig up these pictures on some website of the VRWC. Actually, they were available from an official DoD website. Took me about 5 seconds using a google image search.

So, why does the media keep using old file photos from Camp X-Ray when the reality of the situation is considerably different? I guess that, yet again, they've forgotten that their original mission was and is supposed to be to report the news, without shaping it.

Let me just say that this post shouldn't be taken to be giving unqualified support to the idea of the camps at Gitmo. I have problems with the base and the indefinite holding of so many prisoners. That's a post for another day. Neither am I completely opposed to what is going on down there, and either way, I'm committed to the truth. The "truth" that the media is peddling by portraying 4 year old photos as the present day isn't truth at all, and that's what I have a big problem with.