August 10, 2006

Stern, But Stupid

German Confederate Yankee reader Niko translates this response from a letter to the photo editor of Stern magazine, a major German news magazine. The Editor-in-Chief, Andreas Trampe, attacks the reader for questioning Stern about "Green Helmet" (article translation available at EU Referendum), the designated dead baby carrier for Hezbollah in Lebanon since 1996:

Dear Mr ...,

As Editor-in-Chief of Stern's Picturedesk I write this in response to
your harsh letter dating from August 5th, 2006. So what is it that you
don't like about our reporting? What do you find lurid about that
report [i.e. the initial report depicting Green Helmet as "some rescue
worker"]? In the first two pages we show the carnage and victims in
Qana, the next two depict the carnage and victims in Haifa. The
following picture pages are equally balanced, even more so the text
which, obviously, you didn't bother to read. There's no dispute that
the Israeli air raid on that building in Qana did happen, there's also
no dispute that it caused a lot of civilian victims. So what's wrong
about that? What about it appears to be staged? Did Hezbollah dare the
Israelis to conduct the air raid in your opinion? Did Hezbollah
initiate the bomb raid on their own? Did the Palestinian [sic!]
civilian casualties never happen? Where's the faking? We did not
conduct a story about Green Helmet Ali, even less so a lurid one! That
man is featured in just a single picture and a single caption. Even if
that man were indeed to parade dead children intentionally before the
eyes of the world, those children were dead nonetheless, killed in the
raid. And sadly, they won't rise again even when fervent supporters of
Israel's politics pull out red herrings to distract from actual

Your accusations of anti-Semitism on our part, or that we were hoping
for the destruction of Israel, are the biggest bullshit I've heard in
a long time (leaving aside the fact that it's factually wrong).
Israeli victims are to be bemoaned equally, the death of people in
Haifa and Jerusalem is lamentable in the same way. But crude
conspiracy theories seem to be the latest trend. Thanks to upstanding
internet bloggers. They're sitting in Norway, England or Germany, and,
of course, they're much more intelligent, smart and incredulously
independent. They possess knowledge of remote locations and events,
they're capable of classifying complex matters and doing quick
research. There you go, brave new digital world !!!

We, however, prefer to do it the old way, we send journalists and
photographers around the world for large sums of money so that they
can speak on location and directly to the people. For instance, with
Green Helmet Ali, who will answer those allegations put out, and he'll
tell our readers where he's from, what's his name, and what actually
happened on that day in Qana. That, of course, you won't find
originally reported in internet blogs. What you will find, though, is
some super post from some smartass guy about how Green Helmet Ali once
again fooled the whole world because, in actual fact, he's a secret
agent of Hezbollah. I hope you enjoy the reading.

Andreas Trampe
stern Bildredaktion / stern picturedesk
PS What was it again about intelligence and ideology?

Andreas Trampe
Am Baumwall 11
20444 Hamburg
Phone: +49-40-3703-4122
Fax: +49-40-3703-5685

Editor-in-Chief Trampe tells us that the crude analysis and questions brought about by bloggers about the incident in Qana isn't up to the standards of the highly trained, well-paid media on the front lines of the war in Lebanon.

Perhaps Trampe should save his self-righteous indignation, at least until he can explain this video footage (from German TV, no less) of "Green Helmet" directing the body of a child to be pulled from an ambulance, placed on a stretcher, and then paraded in front of the media.

I have no doubt that the fine media reporters and photographers in Lebanon are paid "large sums of money" as the editor states, but you might think that someone being paid so much might feel the obligation to tell the entire story, at least as long as they are unbiased, as these many Arab Muslim stringers covering a war with Israel certainly are. Of course, I'm just trying to clarify complex matters by doing quick research from another country, so what do I know?

(Note: replaced text link with Youtube video)

Posted by Confederate Yankee at August 10, 2006 02:46 PM | TrackBack