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Jun 14, 2006

Your Turn: I Know These Guys Love Uniforms, But....


I have to admit, when this was first sent to me, I thought it was an outtake from the old Hogan's Hero's TV show.  Instead, according to the caption:

White House Press Secretary Tony Snow, left, and White House Counselor Dan Barlett, ride in a military helicopter wearing helmets and flak jackets for a trip from Baghdad International Airport to U.S. Embassy in the Greenzone Tuesday, June 13, 2006 in Baghdad, Iraq. Snow and Bartlett traveled with President Bush who made a surprise visit to Baghdad.

I know this pic has made the rounds, but that's not the same as a face-off with The BAG community.

Thoughts?  Interpretations? Associations?  Projectiles?

(hat tip: John H.)

(image: Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP)


They look terrified! "You mean we actually have to GO to this place. SHIT!!

Also, i guess its not too thought provoking but as soon as i glanced the word Hitler in the post, i automatically added some hitler moustaches onto these guys in my mind. I'm not sure why, but i can't remove these from my mind when i look at it now.

"I think I just crapped my pants."

"You too?"

Either the photographer used a flash, or these guys are facing a doorway... there is a lot of light to balance out the glare from the back window. It doesn't look like flash. If they can see ground, they might have good reason to be apprehensive.

In any case, the pilot would be banking and dropping rapidly to foil snipers. Unless a person adores roller-coasters, he is apt to be unused to the sensation of 40 feet of intestine trying to swap places with the brainstem. These advisors don't seem to be roller-coaster afficiandos. Pity. (Brain replacement therapy obviously still needs work.)

OK, so it does look like a scene from a bad scifi movie: unwilling victims are strapped down, wearing funny helmets, there is an evil glow as the mad scientist flips switches, and everybody waits for the explosion. Or the brain swap.

Maybe that is why military projects are called "operations".

Don't the Republicans pride themselves on being the party of "manly men"?

""Manliness" . . . "seeks and welcomes drama and prefers times of war, conflict, and risk." It entails assertiveness, even stubbornness, and craves power and action."

Both these men looked terrified in a way that's very "unmanly." But I'm sure they got their swagger back once they were on the ground.

When I first saw this picture, I didn't recognize the individuals in it, but I thought that their expressions were kind of silly. When I found out who they were and where they were, I thought, "they are scared, and making nervous jokes about it." Nothing funny about the serious business of being shot at with real guns. Maybe, it was a good thing they were subjected to what our poor servicemen and women are facing every day, all day long. Too bad, ther President wasn't on that heliocopter.

Many have rightfully called this a Dukakis moment. There should be a Dukakis Rule: Lose the helmet, dickhead(s). The Decider knows this.

I'm catching a bit of Monty Python in this moment, the triumphant retreat —

Bravely bold Sir Robin rode forth from Camelot.
He was not afraid to die, O brave Sir Robin!
He was not at all afraid to be killed in nasty ways,
Brave, brave, brave, brave Sir Robin!

Millions of Iraqis walk the streets of Baghdad unarmored, unhelmeted. Are they braver than our bold flacks?

We face an enemy with no tanks, no artillery, no air bases, no factories, no flak jackets, helmets, or helos. Brave brave Sir Tony and Sir Dan.

(note: while these guys suffer haukdottir's roller-coaster, the photographer still does his job.)

The Psychotic Patriot used the header "Charge Of The Photo Op Brigade", and used different text above their heads.

yeah, they do look a little green in the face. A little too out of shape to do those uniforms justice. I'm guessing all aboard had to wear the jackets and helmets. Maybe they didn't give the photographer one, because you know they're just walking targets anyway.

The "civilian military leadership:" taking the uniforms without taking a bullet.

In their defence (that a first!), it a low level flight at rooftop level on a Chinnook helo banking and diving with three gunners waving their big .50 cals around. The only thing standing between you and a fiery pool of blood on the ground is the pilots skills and a long guy NOT looking up at the right moment and shooting your ass out of the sky with an RPG, AK or SA-7.

Yep, pass the Depends(tm) brother, this is going to be one hell of a ride. Bartlett should be scared, after all this mess is of his own bosses making. As for Tony Snow one would expect the intrepid (ex)-Fox newscaster to take it all in stride, right?

Why are they flying from the airport to the Green Zone? Doesn't Baghdad have SuperShuttle?

SuperShuttle, yep it called the "Bomb the Infidels Xpress!: Getting there will be a blast, just don't ask us to get you ther in one piece!"

Black dog Barking is right.. the helmets look slapstick.

Military draft anyone?


croatoan > "SuperShuttle?" they do but:

"Samson, a native of Madras, India, pulls out his dog-eared, hardbound Bible and reads his favorite verse. "A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee." He prays because the four-lane, six-mile stretch of road leading from central Baghdad to the country's main airport remains one of the most dangerous stretches of highway in Iraq,*if not the world*".

There's a second photo I've seen taken at about the same time, I believe it's on, where Snow is smiling directly into the camera. The two photos together make me think he's handling it better than Bartlett and this first photo here is Snow hoping Bartlett doesn't hurl. Which amuses me to no end.

I agree with the poster above, I believe they are facing a window/door/exit and can see the ground from where they're at. It must be scary.

Good. I'm glad they're scared. I'm tired of politicians and they're "War is fun when you know you won't die" attitude.

"SuperShuttle, yep it called the "Bomb the Infidels Xpress!: Getting there will be a blast, just don't ask us to get you ther in one piece!""

Not to menetion the fact that it only services the economy lot every 15 minutes.


I wonder where the pictures of Bush during this maneuver are? I have a feeling this scared-shitless photo was released in a way to emphasize the fact that the President made a very corageous move to swoop down into Baghdad unannounced, abduct the Prime Minister and pose for a photo op. (Which would also explain why there aren't any photos of Bush remotely like that of Bartlett and Snow.)

My abuse of the English language knows no end! :-/

BTW, how many woodchucks would Bartlett upchuck if he upchuked on the chopper?

Coming soon to a theatre near you!

Brokeback Baghdad...feel the heat!

Tony to Dan:

"I wish I knew how to quit you!"


See, when I first saw this, it looked more like a still from a modern day Laurel & Hardy remake...

Damn, Bush was smart enough not to get in that photo op. Now that would have been plastered all over like the Dukakis-in-a-tank clips and photos.


What do Christians say when THEY'RE in the foxhole: "Uh, Cut & Run?" or "Let's get the f%*# outta here!"

Stupid effing white boys. Think they own the planet. They don't even own their own bowel movements.

The picture is a hoot. I agree that civilians with desk jobs look silly in military get-up even without the expressions of fear. Consider some of the pictures we've seen of other people "dressed" for their Iraq photo-ops--I remember one of Condi Rice in a charming pink flak suit and another of Judith Miller, also stylish in a safari-suit. And, of course, Bush himself, with the turkey!

This picture strikes me as a photo-op from the Bushco that is trying to win back some public approval points by emphasizing new, warmer, kinder, more honest. It's the Bushco that hired Tony Snow. It's also the same Bushco that prompted Bush's "mistake" about talking too tough, being misunderstood.

This photo is intended to communicate that these are real guys. You could have a beer with these boys. They feel what you might feel in similar circumstances. Iraq is a mess, but we are bringing freedom to an oppressed people. We aren't incompetent warmongering fascists, no! We are human, we're trying to do the right thing, and you can laugh with us.

"Yeah when they shot that guy back there, it looked so real - the blood and guts spilling out of him and that shocked look on his face. Nothing like on the simulator back in Washington where they just fall down and disappear!"

Where is the picture of GWB in his full body armour military gear???

"Could you stop the war, please? I'd like to get off."

My first impression was of Laurel & Hardy -- "Well, here's another nice mess you've gotten me into."

PTate in MN:

A beer with these guys? I don't think so, he would have to wait at least an hour before he gets to eat, let alone ingest anything alcholic. That would really make him upchuck the Woodchuck(tm)!

It wasn't photoshopped from Hogan's Heros?

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