The President of the Union of Welsh Independents, himself a former BBC broadcaster, has called for more graphic images of war and its aftermath to be shown in the press and media, so that the public can see the consequences of military action and its human cost.
“The harrowing picture of the body of little Aylan Kurdi washed up on a Turkish beach has touched people’s hearts and minds,” said the Revd Dr R.Alun Evans. “It appears to be having a similar effect on public opinion as the iconic image of Phan Thj Kim Phúc, the young girl running down the road after being burned by napalm, did during the Viet Nam war.”
“The images from war zones shown on news outlets in Britain are usually sanitised or even romanticised,” he said. “People don’t see the mangled and dismembered bodies after bomb blasts or aerial attacks. If they did, public opinion might have put a brake on the UK government before it took military action in countries like Libya, Iraq and Afghanistan.
“During the First World War, David Lloyd George told a journalist that “if people knew the truth, the war would finish tomorrow; so, they must not know the truth.”
“Graphic images show the horrific truth of war,” said Dr Evans. “It is the duty of all news outlets to show and tell people the truth. Having seen the truth from a beach in Turkey, people are already reacting with humanity and compassion and demanding that the UK government takes action to help these desperate refugees.”