Friday, June 16, 2006


As a regular reader of Time magazine, I enjoy excellent articles about current events and am able to gain a certain amount of insight that you don't get from just watching the news...especially if you watch Fox News.

My respect for Time has been shaken a little with the latest issue, however. While I am no fan of the Iraq insurgency, it's clear that some Iraqis do support it and I expect that thousands of others are either neutral or possess an equal hatred for the US presence. With this in mind, I have to question the wisdom of this cover for the magazine:

It's strikes me as unecessarily provocative to publish the type of image. I'm sure in the west we're all very happy that Abu Mousab al-Zarqawi is in heaven with his 72 virgins now, but painting his face with a blood red X on an international magazine is unlikely to calm the stormy seas of emotion in the Middle East.

The cover calls to mind the wanted posters of outlaws in the wild west and I don't think that was a coincidence. But who has history romanticized, the sheriffs who printed the posters or the men contained within?

We know Iraq is an angry place and, while the US forces have experienced some success with the removal of al-Zarqawi, the media is unlikely helping to win the hearts and minds of Iraqis with a magazine cover that is the equivalent of putting a head on a pike in the city square.

Surely, the editors of time remember how those Danish cartoons went over? Well, wait til they get a load of this.


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