Friday, May 05, 2006

In Image War, U.S. Shows Video of Bumbling Zarqawi

NYT In the video released last week by the terrorist Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi, he is seen firing long bursts from a heavy automatic rifle, his forearms sprouting from beneath black fatigues as he exudes the very picture of a strong jihadist leader.

If you can control the editing, you can make the video show whatever you want.
In out-takes from the same video, Mr. Zarqawi, the leader of Al Qaeda in Iraq, cuts an altogether different figure: As the camera rolls, Mr. Zarqawi is flummoxed by how to fire the machine gun until an aide walks over and fiddles with the weapon so it discharges.
Oh, so that's how it works.
Another scene shows Mr. Zarqawi hand the weapon off to several other insurgents, who absent-mindedly grab it by its scalding hot barrel.
And after his shooting scene, Mr. Zarqawi walks away from the camera to reveal decidedly non-jihadist footwear: Comfortable white New Balance sneakers.
Is he a paid endorser for New Balance footwear?
Turning the tables of propaganda on the most hunted man in Iraq, the American military released the video out-takes today, which they said troops had discovered amongst a trove of information about Mr. Zarqawi last month in the dangerous town of Yusifiyah, just south of Baghdad.

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