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UK press coverage

September 1997

Aug 97 Sep 97 Nov 97





LETTERS - Who's calling who a fake?

Before Amanda Sebestyen unleashes her wrath (Letters, last issue) she should check her facts. Her response to the Journalist's very fair coverage of The Picture That Fooled the World and ITN's libel action against LM magazine was typical of the response to Thomas Deichmann's account: evade the evidence and resort to slurs.

Neither Thomas Deichmann nor LM has accused ITN of "faking" the images from Trnopolje camp. The allegation is simply that the image of emaciated Bosnian Muslim Fikret Alic apparently caged behind a barbed wire fence fooled the world because, as is evident from the ITN rushes, it was their crew behind the wire, not the Muslims. Having entered a small compound next to where the refugees were standing, the crew filmed outwards through the wire.

That picture became a symbol of Holocaust-scale horrors in Bosnia. Deichmann's contention is that the way the pictures were presented gave the misleading impression that Trnopolje was a concentration camp, and that ITN not only failed to correct this but celebrated it.

For Sebestyen to describe this creditable piece of investigative journalism into war reporting as a "non-story" is ludicrous and ironic. It is ITN who have tried to turn it into a non-story by trying to gag LM Magazine by using the libel law.

It is a pity that for the likes of Sebestyen factual evidence and thorough journalism never get in the way of prejudice and the child-like view of the Bosnian conflict as having been fought between goodies and baddies.

Congratulations to the Journalist for presenting a more balanced view.

Claire Fox, LM Magazine

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