Yesterday, on Facebook, I posted the iconic photo of the 78 year old man in an orange shirt surrounded by police officers with smoke billowing in the background just after the explosion at the Boston Marathon. I took notice of the Israeli flag in the background. It was hard to miss the flag through the smoke and it meant something to me that the flag was so prominent in the photo.
One fellow left a comment on the photo with a link to a CNN version of the photo. In the CNN version the Israeli flag cannot be seen. The implication was that the photo was edited to remove the Israeli flag.
I did a little digging and I discovered that CNN got the photo from Getty Images. I hunted for the photo on Getty Images and found the second photo on their site. At first I was incensed. I even put up a blog post criticizing Getty Images (completely against my nature) for what I thought was scrubbing the photo.
I never looked at the photos side by side. I last saw the original photo last night and I first saw the second photo this morning. They were similar enough that it looked suspicious. But once I posted the photos one above the other I noticed, as did several intrepid readers, that they were not the same photo. The photographer took more than one photo as he got closer to the scene. In one photo the Israeli flag is visible, in the other it is not. But in the second photo, the American flag is visible. That’s clearly a better choice for this particular tragedy.