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As the New York Times’s David Carr notes, the Pentagon seems to be taking a page from Joseph Heller’s Catch-22. It has just issued
paragraph 11(a) of IAW Change 3, DoD Directive 5122.5:
“Names, video, identifiable written/oral descriptions or identifiable photographs of wounded service members will not be released without the service member’s prior written consent.”
This decision is designed to make it increasingly difficult for American news organizations to transmit images of wounded service personnel from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. It dovetails with the existing Pentagon policy on photographs of coffins of the dead being returned to the United States.
I wish I could say this was motivated by respect for the wounded service personnel and their rights. In fact, it’s quite plain it’s not.
More from Scott Horton:
Six Questions — October 18, 2014, 8:00 pm
Nathaniel Raymond on CIA interrogation techniques.
Mark Denbeaux on the NCIS cover-up of three “suicides” at Guantánamo Bay Detention Camp
From the June 2014 issue
Acres of hemp grown by “patriotic‚” U.S. farmers in 1942 at the behest of the U.S. government:
A study suggested that the health effects of exposure to nuclear radiation at Chernobyl were no worse than ill health resulting from smoking and normal urban air pollution.
Greenpeace apologized after activists accidentally defaced the site of Peru’s 2,000-year-old Nazca Lines when they unfurled cloth letters reading “time for change” near the ancient sand drawings. “We fully understand,” the group wrote in a statement, “that this looks bad.”
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“I hope that after reading the following pages the leaders of the Y. M. C. A. will start a campaign to induce good young men to do nothing. If so, I shall not have lived in vain.”