SF anonimity

Discussion in 'The Club House' started by zhuk, Jan 21, 2010.

  1. zhuk

    zhuk New Member

    Kiwi controversy after SAS war hero Willie Apiata photographed


    January 22, 2010 - 2:49PM

    Controversy has erupted in New Zealand over the publication of a photograph showing New Zealand war hero Willie Apiata on duty with fellow SAS soldiers in Afghanistan.

    Corporal Apiata, who was awarded the Victoria Cross, was photographed in Kabul this week, moments after a deadly gunfight in which three Taliban militants were killed.

    The publication of the photo of Corporal Apiata yesterday sparked debate about news media showing members of the SAS - whose identities are normally withheld due to security reasons - on duty.

    Australia's Defence Department enforces similar restrictions, with strict secrecy surrounding the identities, activities and whereabouts of the nation's special forces troops.

    French photographer Philip Poupin took photographs of Corporal Apiata and two other members of the New Zealand SAS emerging from a building after the attack. Poupin told The Dominion Post that he saw the troops emerge from the building.

    "They were going out of the building where the three insurgents were. They walked towards the Presidential Palace, no car, no Humvee," said Poupin from a hotel room in Kabul. "They were really close to the insurgents ... they were there to fight."

    Once the battle subsided, Poupin went inside the building and saw the bodies of the militants.

    "There were two in one room and one in another. I can't tell you if [the New Zealanders] were directly fighting with the insurgents ... but I could say they were right there."

    They were the only Western troops involved in the battle, he said.

    Monday night's attack was one of the biggest in Kabul since the war began in 2001. It followed three suicide bombings in the capital.

    This week, NZ Prime Minister John Key described the SAS's role in the battle as "very limited", saying they were "quite a long way back" from the building and fired no shots.

    He confirmed their presence only after it was revealed by a New York Times reporter.

    Thirteen people died in the battle and at least 70 were injured.

    Defence Minister Wayne Mapp said yesterday that the SAS members were not as close to the fighting as Poupin suggested.

    "That's the information we have. Both the Prime Minister and I have acted on the advice we've received."

    Corporal Apiata was awarded the Victoria Cross in 2007 for carrying an injured Kiwi soldier out of the firing line during an attack in Afghanistan three years earlier.

    Yesterday Mr Key criticised media for publishing a photograph of Corporal Apiata that clearly showed his face, saying it put the soldier at further risk.

    He said Corporal Apiata would probably stay in Afghanistan until the end of his deployment. "He is a very brave New Zealand soldier and he wants to be on deployment," he said.

    The New Zealand Defence Force website features several photographs of Corporal Apiata, and has released photographs of him on duty in the past.

    Dominion Post editor Bernadette Courtney said the paper published Corporal Apiata's photograph because it was the first picture of New Zealand SAS troops in Kabul after they responded to a Taliban attack.

    It was well known that the SAS was in Kabul, and the Prime Minister had confirmed the soldier in the picture was Corporal Apiata, she said.

    "Corporal Willie Apiata is a war hero who asked to return to Afghanistan. He was paraded in front of the public and the media here and around the world when he won his Victoria Cross.

    "He has had extensive media training – $35,000 worth of advice paid for by the Defence Force.

    "We don't believe media here have placed Corporal Apiata or any of the other SAS members at any greater risk than they already are."

    The New Zealand Herald said today the journalist who broke the story of the SAS joining the counterattack against a Taliban strike was surprised at the reaction in New Zealand.

    Afghanistan-based New York Times reporter Dexter Filkins, in a blog posted to the newspaper's website yesterday, wrote: "New Zealand? At war? Who knew? Not a lot of New Zealanders, apparently.

    "The news ... that a team of commandos from New Zealand had joined Afghan soldiers at the scene caused a sensation in the little country off the coast of Australia," he wrote.

    Filkins said he spotted the New Zealand soldiers as they moved in to Pashtunistan Square, the site of the Taliban attack that killed five people and wounded at least 70.

    He said one told him: "Get out of here."

    "I saw the patch on his arm announcing his country. Others were more friendly. 'Can't talk now, mate,' said another with a smile."

    The New Zealand Herald's assistant editor John Roughan said the paper stood by the decision to use the picture which, he said, had real news value.

    "The soldiers were in a public street, in a major city, visible to anybody, wearing their uniforms, carrying their guns, photographed as the New Zealand SAS," he said.'


    So..."real news value" or dangerous exposure?

    I tend to think the latter while on ACTIVE duty (in the lion's den, so to speak). This soldier is very well known due to his Victoria Cross, and maybe I'm being completely paranoid (always a possibility and someone with combat experience is very welcome to correct me) but I can't see how it helps to have him identified in a presently active zone. Even his own Defence Dept has done this in the past.

    But that's the press for ya...notice they persec'd the other guy's ID but not Apiata. One time this might have been an offence of some sort but apparently not now. I stand ready to be educated :p
  2. Jpyle

    Jpyle New Member

    Noticed in your quotes that a New York Times reporter was involved. Here in the States many view the New York Times as a traitorous yellow journalism rag sheet. New York Times reporters have printed US military operational information, classified documents and exposed covert operations on numerous occassions. It doesn't surprise me at all that they would jeapordize the life of a New Zealand war hero by printing his picture and divulging his location to the enemy.

  3. dog2000tj

    dog2000tj New Member

    So now the enemy has access to his picture, his full name and his home country information? :eek:With the info that is available out there now how hard would it be to locate this guy? :(

    I think the reporter is a fu***ng idiot and that the soldier should have shot the reporter after he was done shooting the Taliban. :cool:
  4. zhuk

    zhuk New Member


    Well, holy sh1t...didn't know that about the NYT. That makes a whole lot of sense then. I wonder how the eff they sleep at night...probably with an inflated sense of their own historical importance :rolleyes:

    Come the treason trials...Up against the wall, motherf*ckers!
  5. CA357

    CA357 New Member Supporter

    The New York Slimes and a French photographer. Why am I not surprised?

    Effin' Douches

    With props to Tango,
  6. Yunus

    Yunus Active Member

    You should research the NYT for yourself, don't just accept what has been said in this thread as the only side of the story.
  7. skullcrusher

    skullcrusher New Member

    The NYT is possibly the biggest liberal fish wrap in the US. They are anti-military, anti-capitalism and pro-progressive. They are a tool of the Marxist agenda.
  8. Franciscomv

    Franciscomv New Member


    I agree with you 100%, CA357.
  9. gorknoids

    gorknoids New Member

    You just. Don't. Do. That. Sh*t
  10. bkt

    bkt New Member

    That's true. Go to the source: New York Times ombudsman Daniel Okrent confirms it is a liberal paper.

    (For the benefit of those not living in the U.S. who may not grasp the vernacular meaning of "liberal" in this country, it means "those in favor of a very big, very powerful government at the expense of the individual in terms of liberty, freedom, wealth and property." Stalin, Che and Mao are regarded as "liberals" by those on the left in this country. Many who work at the New York Times and other major news media outlets are hard-core communists.)
  11. dunerunner

    dunerunner New Member

    100 years ago, we would have hung the bastards! Today we just call them effin' douches.

    Makes one long for the good old days.
  12. skullcrusher

    skullcrusher New Member

    + a gazillion, bkt!

    They call themselves "Progressives" based on the movement called the same aroud the turn of the century...huh...must be a centennial thing...hmmm
  13. zhuk

    zhuk New Member


    It is quite strange the different meanings of 'liberal'. Liberal with a capital "L" is something altogether opposite in Australia, as the 'Liberal Party' is our main Conservative/Tory party, opposing the (traditionally, but not quite so much anymore) left wing Labor Party.

    [Confusingly, there are some things in Aust (like taxpayer-funded universal health care) which are supported widely across the whole spectrum, those on the right included...which probably makes little sense to you]

    But I'm pre-programmed to let the US meaning of 'liberal' kick in when I'm on this forum :p

    Gotta say though...I don't know if anyone bar the completely insane lunar-lefties here (ie the remaining rump of the Aust Communist Party, which got about 168 votes last election lol) would call Stalin/Mao etc 'liberals' :D
  14. TXnorton

    TXnorton New Member

    Recent members of Obama's administration have named Chairman Mao as one of their most inspirational figures. Mao's visage was on one of Obama's White House Christmas Tree ornaments!

    Do NOT doubt that the uber-Liberals of the far Left wing of the Liberal Demoncratic party are in fact Socialists, and may in fact be out and out Communists.

    The American peole are starting to wake up though, as evidenced by the recent election of Scott Brown in Mass.

    As an interesting side note, as this thread was about a Kiwi (NZ) SAS member. We just picked up our best friends, who are New Zealanders, at the airport yesterday. They come visit us every January or February, and we shoot my guns (most that they cannot have in NZ, or in Bermuda where they live half the time), and we also do a quail hunt. These Kiwis are in the (generally) Conservative minority in NZ. But they report that Obama's initial gloss has worn thin and his international reputation is now MUCH lower than it was when he was elected. He is now starting to be seen internationally as a lame duck president (after just a year!).
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2010
  15. AcidFlashGordon

    AcidFlashGordon New Member

    Well, this morning in the bathroom, I had a movement that pretty well describes their movement.

    Personally, I'll replace the "u" with an "i" in that statement. It seems that whatever problems are facing the U.S., the Great Organiser does nothing but blame it ALL on Bush. Sure he wasn't the greatest president but he's not responsible for everything Obozo wants to spew his way.