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  1. #1
    Good Enough rrussou812's Avatar
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    04.23.17 @ 12:14 PM
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    Photos of soldiers' coffins released

    Photos of soldiers' coffins released

    06:12 PM CDT on Thursday, April 28, 2005


    Associated Press


    WASHINGTON The Pentagon, under pressure from open-government advocates, released hundreds of images Thursday of flag-draped coffins of American soldiers.

    The Pentagon had previously refused to release such images, which were taken by military photographers. Nor has it allowed the news media to photograph ceremonies of soldiers' coffins arriving in the United States, saying it is enforcing a policy installed in 1991 to respect the privacy of families of dead soldiers.

    Photo gallery: Images from The National Security Archive
    The pictures were released in response to a request for all military photos of caskets containing the remains of American soldiers taken since the U.S. launched its attack on Afghanistan in October 2001. Some critics have contended the government is trying to hide the human cost of wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    The Pentagon provided most of the images without context, so it was unclear where and when they were taken and whom they portrayed.

    Most of the photographs showed soldiers carrying or saluting flag-draped coffins. Some of the labeled pictures were of remains of the Columbia space shuttle astronauts, military accidents around the world and deceased veterans of previous wars, while signs in the background of a few pictures identified their location as Afghanistan.

    The military obscured the faces and identifying badges of many of the soldiers pictured in the ceremonies. A Pentagon spokesman said the pictures were edited out of privacy concerns.

    The photographs were released in response to a Freedom of Information request and lawsuit by Ralph Begleiter, a professor at the University of Delaware and a former correspondent for CNN, who argued the photographs were a public record.

    Jim Turner, a Pentagon spokesman, said the photos released were taken for historical or training purposes. He said military photographers now are taking pictures at such ceremonies less frequently.

    Last April, the Air Force released scores of photos taken at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware in response to another FOIA request. The pictures included shots of some of the coffins of the astronauts who died last year on the space shuttle Columbia. The Pentagon later called that release a mistake.

    http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB152/index.htm


    Ok so here's my question, what is there to gain from seeing the coffins of dead soliders?? Hiding the human cost of war?? We see the news reports and hear the numbers almost on a daily basis of someone being killed and how many have died, what is there to gain from seeing coffins draped with the U.S flag?

    Seems incredibly disrepectful to our fallen soliders and their families, this Ralph Begleiter guy should be ashamed.



    Thoughts?

  2. #2
    Hot For Teacher
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    02.07.09 @ 09:19 AM
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    On the contrary. I think a lot of these soldiers' families want people to be aware of the sacrifices their children have made for this country. I think if you polled families of war victims you would find people on both sides of the fence.
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  3. #3
    Atomic Punk MikeL's Avatar
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    03.03.15 @ 08:31 PM
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    Those men and women served their country, and each and every one of them died for us. They deserve recognition. Part of that recognition is reflecting upon their sacrifice--what it meant, both to them and to us. As a nation, we need to be reminded to do that. Political games should not be played with their memories!

  4. #4
    Atomic Punk
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    05.31.14 @ 08:17 PM
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    Technically, the famillies can invite the media to their funeral/burrial service. Many do so these days.

    The fix is to not allow military personel to photograph the transport of the coffins in the first place, as is the case with these particular pictures. I personally don't have a problem except that we all know that those pictures will end up as posters at some lame-assed anti-war rally.
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    Atomic Punk MikeL's Avatar
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    They need to be used in protests. It's the epitome of what a soldier fights for. People need to be reminded of that, including our leaders. Numbers are numbing, while photos touch us. There's a human cost to war, and our leaders really don't like us to be reminded of that. That's why the policy was put in place, long before the current administration came into power.

    How many people here have been to a national cemetery, without being there for a funeral? I'm fortunate to live near one. When I was a kid, I'd ride my bike through it on my way to the airport. It was more nice paved roads without traffic than anything significant to me, but in time that changed. I started to enjoy history, and I realized that those men in that cemetery had lived it. I started stopping on my bike rides, and reading some head stones. Gives a person something to think about.

  6. #6
    Eruption VOA's Avatar
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    04.23.07 @ 08:06 PM
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeL
    Those men and women served their country, and each and every one of them died for us. They deserve recognition. Part of that recognition is reflecting upon their sacrifice--what it meant, both to them and to us. As a nation, we need to be reminded to do that. Political games should not be played with their memories!

    Agreed!

 

 

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