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mapjdlinks on 2010-08-30In the vanguard of the Marines, the press corps had already stormed Somailia. Now we will see more of the famailiar pictures of grotesque human degradation, with foreign angels of mercy ministering to starving children, juxtaposed with images of trigger-happy teen-age looters. Such pictures prompted President Bush's military adventure-now they will justify it.
The camera can't lie, we are told. But anyone who has watched a Western film crew in an African famine will know just how much effort it takes to compose the "right" image. Photogenic starving children are hard to find, even in Somalia.
Somali doctors and nurses have expressed shock at the conduct of film crews in hospitals. They rush through crowded corridors, leaping over stretchers, dashing to film the agony before it passes. They hold bedside vigils to record the moment of death. When the Italian actress Sophia Loren visited Somalia, the paparazzi trampled on children as they scrambled to film her feeding a little girl-three times. This is disaster pornography.