“I think our reporting of the Middle East is lethal.” Robert Fisk
It’s been over eight years since “Operation Iraqi Freedom” began. During that time, mainstream media has made Iraq into an object of intense scrutiny. We’ve been shown documentaries justifying or condemning the rationale for invasion; high-tech simulations demonstrating the mechanics of the invasion; graphic illustrations of the economic costs of the war; images of devastation wreaked by suicide bombers and other kinds of conflict; people mourning dead friends or digging bodies out from under rubble);  a statue falling in Baghdad; hooded men electrocuted or tied up like dogs in Abu Ghraib; photographs of American civilians hanging from a bridge in Fallujah; images of fleeing refugees, Saddam Hussein’s dental examination following his being tracked down to a hole outside ad-Dawr; his execution on the scaffold and men throwing their shoes at George W Bush. What, after all this, remains to be seen? I do not ask the question ‘rhetorically’. What remains to be seen is nothing less than the ongoing and enduring consequences of invasion for millions of unnamed, under-valued human lives – about whom we hear and see virtually nothing. Perhaps, if we more clearly saw what remains of these lives, we would ask, as millions of Iraqis do, why? Was it worth it?
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Published in Photoworks Issue 16, 2011
Commissioned by Photoworks