Rusty Shackleford

Such as photos of Korans burning. Such as the bodies of children being paraded before reporters for hours.

What Reuters and others in the mainstream media do not disclose about all of their photos from Southern Lebanon is that no reporter is allowed in the area without Hezbollah approval. Even worse, many of the photos of Israeli "atrocities" are actually taken at organized tours put on by Hezbollah.

The images are real, but the photos are neither spontaneous nor do they tell the entire story.

Without the two forgeries it would be tempting to characterize the reporters at these staged events as victims of Hezbollah censorship. With the forgeries, it is now clear that many of these reporters are participants in a Hezbollah propaganda campaign against Israel.

Without the forgeries it would be hard to swallow the notion that the local Arab reporters employed by the larger news organizations were neutral and unbiased in this war. With the forgeries, it is clear that at least some are actually combatants and partisans on the propaganda front.

Reuters won't see this. Reuters can't see this. To the editors at Reuters, Israel is the cause of the miserable condition innocent Lebanese civilians find themselves in. Photos showing what they already believe to be true will not be scrutinized.

We seldom question that which we already believe.

So, while Reuters is frantically implementing new procedures meant to separate forged photos from authentic ones, do not expect to see much change in the content of those photos. We will still see the bodies of children. We will still see captions blaming Israeli aggression for their deaths.

Reuters does not need a new editorial process. What Reuters needs is moral clarity. Given their track record, don't hold your breath that it will come any time soon.

Dr. Rusty Shackleford has been blogging since 2004, and is proprietor of The Jawa Report.

Rusty Shackleford

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