Who’s unhinged now?

Attytood
November 28, 2006

You could have seen this coming a mile away.

With Democrats poised to take control of Congress, Iraq now officially a “civil war” (in most quarters), and George W. Bush becoming the lamest duck to waddle through the Oval Office in recent memory, the right-wing blogosphere is more hard-up for good material than Michael Richards at an NAACP prayer breakfast.

Forget commenting on the real news of the day, what with Iraq spiraling out of control. Instead, the conservative side of cyberspace is eager — no, desperate — to relive its past glories, even those that weren’t so glorious after all. Consider a frequent topic here at Attytood: The right-wing blogosmear of photojournalism in the Middle East. In the past, wingers like Powerline and Michelle Malkin have smeared some of the bravest photojournalists around, accusing some of working with the enemy when in reality they just don’t like the actual imagery of the neocons’ failed war.

Still, conservative bloggers have ridden this tactic — looking for proof of Photoshopping or forged documents by the “biased liberal media” — to claim several “victories,” changing the perception of some issues when they couldn’t change reality. Prime example: Those all-but-certainly forged documents slipped to “60 Minutes,” clouding the fact that Bush really did vanish before his National Guard duty was completed during the Vietnam era. Also, that Reuters photographer who foolishly added smoke to a picture of devastation in Beirut, as if the actual warfare wasn’t brutal enough.

But now it’s clear that it’s the right that — to steal one of Ann Coulter’s favorite phrases — is becoming unhinged. See the photo at the top of the post? It’s one more sad and poignant image of how civil war has ripped Iraq apart — here’s the caption from Reuters:

Women cry behind a coffin containing the body of their relative, in front of Imam Ali hospital in Baghdad’s Sadr city November 27, 2006. Their relative was killed during Sunday’s clashes in north Baghdad.
And conservative bloggers showed their respect for this tragedy by…claiming that the grieving woman at top left is actually a Photoshopped version of George W. Bush in a burqa. If the one blogger who came up with this insane idea — someone named Confederate Yankee — had been alone out there, it would have been fairly ignorable.

Instead, this off-the-wall theory was picked up by one of the most popular sites on the Internet, the Drudge Report — the very same Drudge Report that ABC’s Mark Halperin recently compared to Walter Cronkite, writing that “if Drudge has a siren up, people know it’s something they have to look at.”

  • A d v e r t i s e m e n t

In fact, the “Bush in a burqa” story (that was the headline on the top left of the Drudge Report an hour ago) is so ludicrous that even Drudge didn’t promo it for very long. However, it was up long enough for Raw Story to catch a screen grab, which we are showing here.

We doubt this is the last time you’ll see this type of ploy. We just feel horrible for this woman in Sadr City, who already suffered once this week with the loss of a loved one, only to suffer a second time at the hands of the 101st Fighting Keyboard Commandos, firing willy-nilly to hit a political target and not caring who gets caught in their ridiculous crossfire






 
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