Originally created 04/27/04

Not a pretty picture



About the time a concerned world was trying to pry train-collision information out of North Korea, the U.S. government and its contractors were trying to put a lid on photos of flag-draped coffins of dead U.S. soldiers.

Not an altogether pretty picture, this.

Since her photo of slain U.S. troops leaving Kuwait was printed by the Seattle Times, Maytag Aircraft Corp. employee Tami Silicio and her husband have been fired.

For providing Americans a look at the realities of war. A dignified look, we might add.

Not an altogether pretty picture, this.

We're better than this. Our country is better than this. Our troops are, today, engaging in battle in Iraq in order to install the kind of freedom that the Pentagon and its contractors are opposing back home.

What Silicio did was technically against company and Pentagon policy. But you know what? Company and Pentagon policy are wrong. They're trumped by the First Amendment.

Americans, of all peoples on Earth, should be the first to be exposed to war's troubling images. For one thing, we're the ones waging the war. For another thing, our freedoms should include seeing the results of that war. And we should be grown up enough to handle it.

Leave the obsessive secrecy to the North Koreas of the world. We demand truth in this country, and those photos spoke it.