by DAVID AXE
A year ago, Russia and Georgia fought a brief, bloody war over Georgia’s breakaway region of South Ossetia. Russia won, and today South Ossetia is essentially autonomous, and a Russian client. The conflict featured propaganda efforts on both sides. Photographers in Georgia took several photographs, allegedly depicting civilians slain by Russian shelling, that appear to be staged or doctored. That’s what I told Russian Channel One when they interviewed me, last summer.
As an example, I pointed to photos that seemed too clean to depict shelling victims. For comparison, I showed some of my own photos from Iraq, depicting bombing victims (above) — as well as some photos by other journalists (see the screen-grab below).
On the war anniversary, Channel One replayed parts of my interview. They matched my discussion of my own photo with a screen-shot of another reporter’s shot. See that video here.
Now I’m getting e-mails from angry Russians. “This has caused a fury in Russian blogs, because a journalist/photographer from Nezavisimaya Gazeta has immediately claimed that this is a photo he made, not you — and definitely not in Iraq,” one reader wrote. “The big question in the Russian blogosphere now is: who is lying, David Axe or Channel One?”
Channel One is. My quotation was taken out of context.