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Clues show 'pictures had clearly been rigged'


The Biritish side of the Daily Mirror/CBS photographs scoop is that the "pics are fake":

British Prime Minister Tony Blair has condemned the pictures [apparently showing Iraqi prisoners being abused by British troops] as appalling - if they are genuine - as the majority of the British press voiced doubts that they were authentic.

Simon Treselyan, a trainer for 19 years with Britain's elite army commando unit the SAS, said there were several clues showing the pictures had clearly been rigged.

He told the Daily Telegraph and the Guardian that neither the weapon used by the supposed torturers, nor the truck shown in the pictures, said to be a Bedford, had been used in Iraq.

Former military intelligence services member Terry Foley told The Sun that British troops now used a more-modern arm, the SA80 MK-2.

Lack of injuries on the supposed victim

Other experts highlighted inconsistencies which suggested the pictures had been faked, such as squeaky-clean uniforms, boots cross-laced instead of straight-laced as is the custom and different cartridge belts from the army's standard issue.

Sources close to the Queen's Lancashire regiment also highlighted the lack of injuries on the supposed victim and the fact that his T-shirt looked remarkably clean for someone who had undergone an eight-hour beating.

Richard Mills, a photographer for three years with the Royal Air Force before joining The Times daily, said the truck was too clean and would have been full of sand and dirt in southern Iraq. [emphases mine]

he report prints the quotes of two unnamed soldiers from the Queen's Lancashire regiment saying, "We told the truth." Why aren't we given the names of those who say they're telling it?

We're given the names of long-time veterans and experts such as Simon Treselyan, Terry Foley, and Richard Mills pointing out verifiable inconsistencies in the Daily Mirror photographs. It's convenient to say—especially when your country's troops are fighting a war you adamantly oppose—that, "It is a fundamental principle of journalism, enshrined in law, that sources are protected. The Mirror is helping the inquiry as much as it can but that is a line we cannot and will not cross." After all, crossing lines is the terrorists' job. But don't you worry, Mirror, should the pics prove fake, you can always conveniently claim you were the victims of a hoax too. An anti-war outlet that's not telling us the whos, whats, whens, wheres, hows and whys relating to these photographs, won't be getting me to accept them at face value either.

The Canadian press is at least including some of these questions too about the photographs' authenticity in its reports: "One senior officer, however, refused to rule out that the newspaper had become the victim of a hoax. 'The pictures are clearly posed,' he said. 'We can't see whether the man with a sandbag over his head is an Iraqi or not.'"


More calls for Mirror to name the soldiers who apparently sold the paper the photos; and Mirror's editor admitting problems over photos. (Hat tip: It's Happening.)

Further, if they are soldiers, then these unnamed two violated British law by failing to at least tell their superiors about the alleged crime, choosing instead to sell photographs of it to a newspaper and never telling any official: "Colonel Bob Stewart, commander of the UK peacekeeping force in Bosnia, said: 'The situation regarding soldiers who have witnessed a war crime is that it is their legal responsibility to stop it and then to report it as well. They haven't done either. If the images are real then they are guilty of complicity in a war crime. It's as simple as that.'" That's why "No10 admitted it had no idea if the pictures were genuine or fakes." Neither of the "soldiers" filed any report.

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