If you photoshop it! Yesterday, newspapers and websites were abuzz with Iran’s missile tests. The launching of nine missiles, including one that is capable of hitting Israel, has been called “saber rattling” and is related to recent controversy over Iran’s nuclear program. The saber might not have rattled as loud as Iran wanted however…
Mike Nizza, of The New York Times, shows that a widely used photo of the missile tests was photoshopped. According to the Agence France Presse, the Iranian state media added an extra missile in order to cover a failed launch. A side-by-side comparison can be seen here.
Yesterday, the front pages of The New York Times, Chicago Tribune and the Los Angeles Times, in addition to numerous other news web sites, featured this photo that we now know appears to have been altered. Today, the Iranian state media released a similar photo, with only three missiles
Perhaps Iran has taken cues from Fox News on how to launch dangerous “photo warfare.” This past week, our blog posted about Media Matter’s report when Fox News altered photos of New York Times reporter Jacques Steinberg and editor Steven Reddicliffe. The picture of Jacques Steinberg was especially disturbing, portraying Steinberg in a possibly anti-Semitic Jewish manner. The incident has received much publicity across the blogosphere, including today on a NPR broadcast.
Fox News’ response? Bill O’Reilly defends the photos, comparing New York Times’ cartoons of O’Reilly as equivalent to digitally manipulated photos, with what could be anti-Semitic stereotypes without disclosing that Fox News had altered the photos.