PHOTO. A picture of Lance Cpl. Joshua M. Bernard taken by AP of the dying marine has drawn outrage. Lance Cpl. Joshua M. Bernard’s AP photo is being called “outrageously irresponsible” by American Legion National Commander Clarence E. Hill.
In a statement to Reuters, Hill says of Lance Cpl. Joshua M. Bernard photo the following:
“The lack of compassion and common decency shown by the Associated Press in releasing this photograph is stunning.
“Lance Corporal Joshua Bernard is a hero who gave his life for his country. His family is understandably offended. I have asked the American Legion state commander in Maine to reach out to his family. Indeed everybody in The American Legion stands with his family.”
The subject of the photo is Bernard, the date is August 14. Bernard is being depicted being hit by a grenade during a Taliban ambush. Bernard thereafter passed.
“This should never have occurred in the first place, nor should it be allowed to occur again. Ironically, when I visited Camp Delta at Guantanamo, the photographer was prohibited from taking images showing the faces of detained terrorists. Yet, photographers are allowed to shoot photographs of fallen American heroes? Where is the common sense? Where is the common decency?”
AP refused at least one request before publication to not run the photo. That request came from the top – Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, who said the following:
“Out of respect for his family`s wishes, I ask you in the strongest of terms to reconsider your decision. I do not make this request lightly…The issue here is not law, policy or constitutional right – but judgment and common decency.”
Santiago Lyon, the director of photography for AP, says :
“AP journalists document world events every day. Afghanistan is no exception. We feel it is our journalistic duty to show the reality of the war there, however unpleasant and brutal that sometimes is”.
Fox News chose to run a different photo of Bernard not injured but earlier from that same day, CLICK HERE
On the other hand, the St Petersburg Times chose to run the acutal dying photo at issue. To see it, CLICK HERE