Saturday, June 09, 2007

Whoever said the camera never lies...

... is lying.

War photographers have often been accused of setting-up a scene to improve its artistic content and composition. Rumours of dead bodies being moved, and even posed, were rife during WWII. The most famous example is a shot taken in 1936 during the Spanish Civil War by Robert Capa, which showed a soldier falling to the ground.

War pictures are not always faked by zealous photographers. Sometimes governments get involved. In WWII, for examples, Britain's secret services produced faked pornographic pictures as part of a propaganda campaign against Japan. Documents released after 50 years in a secret file at Whitehall showed how the British Special Operations Executive mocked up photos of Japanese "profiteers" enjoying the pleasures of the flesh. These pictures were fired over the battlefields in order to show Japanese soldiers what was happening back home while they were busy dodging bullets. With the faked porn went the text: "Soldiers, it is not for such as these that you should die. If you surrender to us, you will be well treated and your lives will be preserved to clean Japan of such scum after the war."

Related posts:
The future will be Photoshopped
Beauty is in the processing time of the beholder


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