Hey Internet, remember when, just a few days ago, you SO BADLY wanted the White House to release the photos of Osama Bin Laden’s blood-stained, bullet-ridden corpse? Well guess what? As it turns out, the White House didn’t release the photos because it knows all too well exactly what you would have done with them.
President Barack Obama’s decision not to release photos of a dead Osama bin Laden was driven in part by fears that the images would be electronically altered and “misused” in a way that could drive anti-American anger, protests and attacks on U.S. personnel abroad, Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Thursday.
“One of the things that I think concerns Secretary [of State Hillary] Clinton and I is the risk not only of the pictures themselves inflaming people who were bin Laden’s adherents and radical extremists, but we were also worried about the potential for manipulation of those photos and doing things with those photos that would be pretty outrageous in terms of provoking a reaction that might in fact put our troops at greater risk in both Iraq and Afghanistan,” Gates said during a town-hall-style meeting with Marines at Camp Lejeune, N.C.
But wait, it gets better! It appears that all those crazy photoshops of the already iconic White House Situation Room photo that were floating around is actually what tipped off officials to the fact that if they released the death photos, internet shenanigans just might ensue.
Gates said his concerns about releasing the bin Laden photos were dramatized by Photoshopping of an official White House picture taken of Obama’s national security team while they were monitoring a live video feed of the operation in which Navy SEALs ultimately killed bin Laden.
“I have gotten from friends all over the country copies of the picture that was this iconic picture taken in the Situation Room while we were watching the operation. And they have been photoshopped in every way you can imagine, including putting you know, coming after the royal wedding, one of these had all of us in one of these big, wide-brimmed hats from the wedding. Another had various football players seated at the table that had been photoshopped in,” Gates noted.
Football players? I
haven’t have seen that one! Regardless, you shot yourself in the foot this time, Internet. You really shot yourself in the foot.