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Photographic Dishonesty
from the Daily Mis-lead
December 5, 2003

In the most famous picture from his trip to Baghdad, President Bush had himself artfully photographed to look like he was serving turkey to the troops. The image was emblazoned on front pages throughout the country - and now appears to be an entirely false depiction.

According to the Washington Post, Bush was actually holding "a decoration, not a serving plate." In other words, he was holding a prop, not real food, and thus only pretending for the cameras to be serving up the holiday meal.

The Post notes that "the foray has opened new credibility questions for a White House that has dealt with issues" like this in the past. In fact, the flap marks the second such distortion in as many days about his trip to Baghdad. Just yesterday it was revealed that the White House's tall tale of Air Force One crossing paths with a British Airways plane was entirely false.

The deceptive picture also harkens back to the controversy surrounding the President's "Mission Accomplished" banner. On May 1, he stood on the deck of the U.S.S. Lincoln in front of the giant sign and declared that "major combat operations have ended." Since that time, more troops have been killed or wounded than before he made that statement, prompting more questions about his photo-op.

When asked why he chose to stand in front of the "Mission Accomplished" banner at a press conference six months later, Bush "disavowed the background banner," saying the White House staff had nothing to do with producing it. But then Navy and administration officials admitted the President had been dishonest, saying that "the White House actually made it." White House spokesman Scott McClellan specifically said, "We took care of the production of it. We have people to do those things."

Of course, Bush's penchant for taking misleading and dishonest photos has not been confined to Iraq. In July of 2002, the President visited a low-income housing development in Atlanta to tout his commitment to funding it. He then proposed a budget that eliminated its funding. Similarly, the President visited a Boys and Girls Club in January of 2003 to tout the organization's efforts. He said the club "has got a grand history of helping children." Just four days after his photo-op, he proposed to cut 15% out of funding for the Boys and Girls Club.

Topplebush.com
Posted: December 7, 2003


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