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Pentagon lifts media ban on coffin photos - What do you think?

WASHINGTON - Defense Secretary Robert Gates on Thursday said he was lifting the ban against media photos of soldiers' coffins returning to the U.S. and will instead leave the decision up to families.

Gates told reporters earlier this month that he was reviewing the policy and that if the needs of the families could be met, and the privacy concerns could be addressed, he favored honoring fallen troops as much as possible.

The emerging policy mirrors one at Arlington National Cemetery, in which families largely decide whether they want media coverage.


Asked by beachmamaof2 at 2:59 PM on Feb. 26, 2009 in Politics & Current Events

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This question is closed.
Answers (24)
  • I just have to share that a Lt was killed in Iraq back in 2005, he was in my husband's battalion but not his company. Anyway, his wife had just found out she was pregnant when he had left. He was killed in action. This body was flown to Colorado via commercial airlines. There was a full military color guard to recieve the casket on arrival. That picture of the military carrying the casket while the other passengers watched won the Pulitzer Prize and was even featured in a week in pictures that is featured on MSNBC. The saying goes see is believing, numbers are just that numbers but to see the casket is to believe.

    However, to the person who said they are dying for nothing should be ashamed of yourself. You might not agree with the war but HOW DARE you say their death was in vain. You should be thankful for their sacrafice because without it you wouldn't be able to run your mouth like that freely

    Answer by usmc0351wife at 6:04 PM on Feb. 26, 2009

  • beachmamaof2

    Answer by beachmamaof2 at 2:59 PM on Feb. 26, 2009

  • I think as long as the familes wishes are upheld then that is great.

    Answer by JeremysMom at 3:01 PM on Feb. 26, 2009

  • I think it's okay. So long as the families have complete privacy if they want it.

    I'm sure some journalists will use photos as a way to stir up support against wars, though.

    Answer by timelessglass at 3:01 PM on Feb. 26, 2009

  • As long as the families can give permission then thats fine I dont think they should without it.

    Answer by gemgem at 3:05 PM on Feb. 26, 2009

  • I think it's going to be ugly. Families will get to say if they want media present, but will have absolutely no say in how the pictures are used once they are out there. It could end up on a protest poster, it could even up being turned into a LOLCAT. Just like those sexting pics - once it's out there, it's free game for anyone.

    Answer by NotPanicking at 3:05 PM on Feb. 26, 2009

  • I agree with you NotPanicking.

    Answer by lucandpepsmom at 3:10 PM on Feb. 26, 2009

  • I think that as long as the dead is respected and the photos are in good taste then I see nothing wrong with it if the family approves of it. After all, no one really knows who is in the coffin and therefore it can be completely anon. to the public. It also brings the reality home for Americans that there are still servicemembers dieing for our freedoms.

    Answer by usmc0351wife at 3:11 PM on Feb. 26, 2009

  • as long as it's being left up to the families then i'm all for it.

    Answer by heatherama at 3:13 PM on Feb. 26, 2009

  • i support it, people need to see how many people are dying for NOTHING! no offence military wives. i know they want to do good... but it is Accomplishing nothing.


    Answer by AmaliaD at 3:15 PM on Feb. 26, 2009