September 18, 2007

Your Turn: Scotch The Notion


I think my brain is just a little too fuzzy right now to tease this apart.  We have one of those separation walls I was hot and bothered about a few months back.  And, we have a kid spray painting an anti-American slogan on it.

Paired with those elements, we have this caption that has a unique way of framing events in Washington.  It reads:

An Iraqi boy writes anti-US slogans on a separation wall in Baghdad. Democrats on Wednesday battled to scotch the notion that General David Petraeus’s upbeat report on his troop surge strategy had punctured their drive to bring US troops home from Iraq.

(In rebuttal, by the way, check out Glen Greenwald’s post yesterday which takes Beltway media to task for assuming that the Petraeus testimony was in any way effective, or had any impact at all.)

Meanwhile, how do you pair that caption with this picture, or vice versa?  If Petraeus somehow did puncture the opposition’s bubble and potentially did forestalled an imposed pullback, did somebody forget to tell the kid?  Or is the picture supposed to supercede the caption, cuing that it’s Petraeus’s picture of things that is off the wall?

Finally (and I’m specifically thinking about how the Blackwater incident highlights the role of Western dead-enders in Iraq):  does the picture telegraph the fact we’re losing some leverage in dictating our “welcome?”

(image: AFP/Ali Yussef. Baghdad.  via YahooNews)

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Michael Shaw
See other posts by Michael here.

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