Thursday, July 1, 2010

Award winning Pallywood images

This photo was posted on The Australian's website with the caption:

1st prize General News Singles
Picture: Kent Klich, Sweden
Light enters through a hole in the roof of a house hit by a tank shell, in Tuffah, northern Gaza. The family that lived in the house had fled during Operation Cast
Lead, the Israeli attack on Gaza that began at the end of December 2008.
Mohammed Shuhada Ali Ahmed, 39, had gone back to fetch clothes for his children,
and was killed when the shell struck.

Now, it seems quite obvious that something has gone through the roof, but that something did not explode. There are no shrapnel holes in the walls and the TV and the furniture are still intact. The other glaringly obvious detail is that whatever came through the roof came straight down. Tanks are not howitzers. At a pinch, tanks can be used in an indirect role; that is, that the main armament is used in a similar manner to an artillery piece. Unfortunately for the claim made by this photographer, they are not capable of firing their main armament at a high enough trajectory to drop a round straight through the roof of a building leaving an impact crater directly under the entry hole. Now, it may well be that the place has been cleaned up since the incident happened, in which case they have done a bang up job of cleaning the place up and filling the holes in the wall with spak-filla. Of course, why they put a new TV in a room with no roof remains a mystery, unless whatever it was that came through the roof didn't contain any High Explosive and didn't kill anybody at all.

Update: Below is a picture from the same photographer's website, the same album that contains the photo above. It shows what a wall looks like when it has been hit by shrapnel. Notice a difference?


Boy on a bike said...

I suspect a bogan Israeli tank driver dropped the clutch when attempting a burn out and popped the tank up on the back sprockets. The surprised gunner hit the trigger, and that is how a tank shell managed to go up nearly vertically. The bogan driver probably grew up in Werribee, and found Gaza to be a cleaner and more attractive place to be.

Anonymous said...

I'm sure it happened just like that, Boab. That house looks just like the ambulances of a few years ago. Perfectly round hole, no damage anywhere inside. Miraculous.

Oh, wait, I know! They took the photo when replacing a skylight. Right after they took the old one out.


Boy on a bike said...

Although the tiles in the floor are cracked and dipped, they are not smashed up like one would expect. The sofas would be shredded if something had gone off - there'd be stuffing everywhere.

Frankly, it looks like the ceiling at my parent's place after a water leak caused the plaster to detach and crash to the floor.

Richard Sharpe said...

Angle of approach aside and making the assumption that Mr Hamas was mistaken as to the delivery method of what went through his roof, the key is to look at the walls. Furniture can be replaced. What would be harder to do would be to fill in all the holes in the walls that the quantity of HE required to blow a hole that big in the roof would have required. Even harder would be to then paint over all those filled in holes and still make the paint look old and weathered. Although, why you would do that if the intent was to make the evil juice look bad remains one of the great mysteries.

Boy on a bike said...

Quite frankly, if something that big came through the roof, there would be no walls. Or roof. Or floor.

1735099 said...

"Pallywood" - more blogspeak. Your posts would be better understood if you used more inclusive English instead of rightist patois.
Remind me - how many Palestinian civvies were killed in Operation Cast Lead?

Richard Sharpe said...

Oh goody! The Court Jester has turned up! You’ll note that “Pallywood” appears in the title. The remainder of the post, what we literate types call the body, is written in plain and “inclusive” English. I apologise if that is too hard for you to understand. Pallywood is a play on words. Hollywood is a place in California where they film people pretending to be other people reading words written by even more other people. They have become quite successful at it, and the place name is now a byword for making fictional films. In India, they make films as well. It is a booming business there, and as a result, films produced in India are now referred to as Bollywood. It is a play on words you see? Now, when fictional films or in this case images come out of Palestine they are referred to as Pallywood. Don’t thank me. It is always a pleasure to educate the less worldly.

You’re also up to your old trick of pointing out unicorns. I know that you understand what that means now, because we’ve already covered that in a previous lesson. The post is about a picture that cannot physically be of what the photographer has claimed. Would you like to form an opinion on the photograph?

Seeing as you have brought it up though, what were the civilian casualties from Op Cast Lead? Be careful of your source though. Hamas has a track record of including their own casualties amongst the civilian casualty count. As we have now seem to have moved beyond the (often willing) manipulation of reports coming out of Gaza to the broader morality of the conflict in question, let me ask you your opinion on the legitimacy of the Hamas Government. Are Hamas the democratically elected representatives of the people of Gaza? If so, are they then the instrument of the will of the people of Gaza? If not, are the people of Gaza then the victims of Hamas’ campaign against Israel. If they do represent the will of the people to prosecute their terrorist campaign against Israel, are the civilian population then complicit in their actions and do they therefore bear responsibility for the actions of Hamas and therefore also the Israeli response?

Who bears ultimate responsibility for civilian deaths in Gaza? Is it the adult population who elected a known terrorist organisation? Is it the known terrorist organisation that has subsequently crushed all opposition, suspended democracy, and continued to launch unprovoked rocket attacks at civilian targets in Israel? Is it, as many suggest, the fault of the only functioning democracy in the Middle East that has been under constant attack since the day it was born and lives through constant unguided rocket attacks aimed at civilian centres with no military worth?

Back to the topic at hand though, how does a blatantly false caption to a photograph end up being published in a mainstream Western newspaper, but even more astounding, how does that photo win press photography awards?

1735099 said...

"Who bears ultimate responsibility for civilian deaths in Gaza?"
Depends how far back in history you want to go, but the fact is that Israel currently is governed by a corrupt halfwit who is held to ransom by religious extremists. Apart from anything else, every military incursion strengthens Hamas.
The Report of the United Nations Fact Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict (have a read - it's instructive)- ( found that gross breaches of human rights were committed by both sides.
Israel did not cooperate, of course, and will ignore it, just as it ignores international conventions on nuclear disarmament.
Until those who stick by Israel irrespective of its conduct begin to respect both the history and the right of the Palestinians to a reasonable quality of life, Islamic extremism will continue to thrive. Useful idiots on the right of the blogosphere simply add fuel to the fire.

Richard Sharpe said...

That’s one question, although you didn’t actually answer it. All you did was ask an evasive question and then descend into name-calling (hint: halfwit is a noun). See if you can answer the rest of the questions I posed. Did you form an opinion on the photo?

1735099 said...

Netanyahu deserves to be called a halfwit given his behaviour -
As to the photograph - It's an image,it proves nothing one way or another. The UN report, on the other hand, is a disciplined and forensic examination of the facts.

Richard Sharpe said...

You’re quite right. The image by itself proves nothing. When coupled with the caption though, it proves that the Palestinians are still up to their old game of taking advantage of naive (or worse, complicit) journalists and photographers to push their propaganda.

You have also still managed to avoid answering the questions I posed.