Friday, July 11, 2008

Iran Photoshops Missile

Remember those old newspaper games where you had to find the things that were different in the images? Iran apparently sucked at those. I know, because top Iranian officials released the following two images demonstrating their successful firing of four missiles the other day. I pulled these images from NPR. Take a look at them, and sing with me: "One of these things is not like the other... One of these things does not belong..."

Go ahead, look closely. I know none of my readers are expert missile test photograph forensic investigators, but tell me if you think four missiles fired successfully. The second photo looks pretty convincing... but compare it to the first. See that third lonely missle in the first photo, sitting on the back of the truck, not going much of anywhere? See that same missile in the second photo? Hmmm.... How did that missile catch up to the other three missiles? And why does it look exactly like the second missile? Check out the smoke clouds under the third and fourth missiles. Here it is zoomed in a bit.

Yeah. Apparently, not only did Iran botch the missile test, they botched photoshopping the missile test. That's right. Iranian officials sought to dupe the entire world into believing they test fired four missiles, with photoshop.

Now, I don't know what's more frightening: the fact that Iran is so detached from reality as to believe that they can fool the world's national intelligence agencies with photoshop, or the fact that it appears as though Iran duped the world's national intelligence agencies with photoshop! That's right... it wasn't the CIA or some other central US Intelligence group that discovered the dupe, it was a guy working for the New York Times. A day after the photo was on newspaper covers all across the nation, according to NPR, a guy named Patrick Witting at the New York Times said "Something's not right here." And the photo was discovered as a fake.

Can someone tell me why no one is asking why the CIA didn't catch this? It seems pretty obvious to me, but then again, I'm not an expert missile test photograph forensic investigator.


John Maszka said...

Photoshop or not, We should be careful what we assume about Iran, or any country.

Puor bien savoir les choses, il en faut savoir le detail, et comme il est presque infini, nos connaissances sont toujours superficielles et imparfaites.

Unfortunately, what we do know is that the Bush administration cannot be trusted to do what it says. Iraq taught us that lesson. Many experts have long been predicting that Bush would invade Iran before he leaves office. But of course, the Bush administration would never admit to such a thing.

“On ne donne rien si liberalement que ses conseils.”

But it is the man who follows his own counsel, he’s the one that should lead.

Anonymous said...

Thank God our govt. would never lie.

Joshua said...

@ John: I don't speak French, so I'm not sure what much of this post said. What I did understand I largely agree with. We do need to be careful about Iran, I think the fact that they released photoshopped pictures to the world intelligence agencies is a frightening demonstration of how lowly Iran views the rest of the world.

Joshua said...

@ Anonymous: Uh... I'm picking up some sarcasm. If I'm correct, I applaud it.

RyAn K <> said...

I think it is pretty safe to say that the United States government (CIA) wasn't duped.

This was probably discovered pretty quickly within our military experts. Like you said, even you and I can plainly see the doctoring.

This guy at the New York Times obviously had a media outlet to get this type of information out. If we had the "CIA Times", I'm sure we'd be crediting (if we want to call it that?) them.

This does pose a great point though. Like it has been stated here, Iran is a troubling situation. So many people are discrediting the Bush Administration (trust me, I'm not a fan either), but they have been making many attempts to draw this to a head. Heart to heart chats? No. But, by the looks and sounds of it, I'm not sure they would be willing to lend an ear...much less care too.

Joshua said...

@ Ryan: You may be right. Though, I think it is typical for the CIA or other such agencies to tout to the press when they have discovered something like deception in this photo. It is entirely possible that they caught the dupe, and didn't think it important. I don't believe that to be the case, however.

Regarding the heart to heart chat, I think you are aware of our fundamental disagreement regarding the effectiveness of diplomatic discussions with Iran.

RyAn K <> said...

This leads into the next post I am working on, but it is food for thought here:

I think that we can both agree that Iran has done and said things that have/had the intentions of evil (a loaded word, but situationally relevant). By many accounts, in regards to Western Philosophy, Iran's worldview has many evils about it. When we think of evil, we often associate it with the actions of Satan.

Using this as imagery (I know it is very broad), but would Jesus sit down with Satan? Would Jesus negotiate with evil?

Ryan said...

Absolutely. Jesus doesn't operate with the same "power" principles that the World does. He needs no bargaining chip or tool; He is who He is which is "love" incarnate. I think "love" would talk (does talk) no matter what the circumstance. No one is too evil for the love and mercy of Jesus, they can reject love and mercy, Jesus is merciful and keeps knocking, I thank Him everyday for that truth.

Ryan said...

In the above statement it should read:

"They can reject love and mercy, but Jesus is merciful and keeps knocking"

I mean to say that Jesus keeps knocking with love and mercy everyday in our lives. We all have evil sides to us and are in need of constant redemption.

Nothing is impossible with my God; He is bigger than the evils of Iran, the inequality and human suffering in Africa and the misguided mind inside my head

Joshua said...

Again Ryan, I think we are discussing something about which you, Ryan and I have a fundamental disagreement.

In response to your question: No, Jesus would not sit down to talk with the devil. But Ahmedinijad is not the Devil, so I think your argument commits the fallacy of false analogy. I don't think we can use it as a basis for this argument. It's about redemption. Satan is beyond redemption. Ahmedinijad is not.

Ryan said...

Am I the only one that recalls Jesus having a conversation with Satan? The garden, Jesus being tempted etc.

I agree that Jesus would maybe not negotiate with Satan but Jesus can do whatever He wants. I'm not ready to say that Jesus would not "sit down"(as loosely as we are using that) with Satan...

Would like your insight for further discussion Josh...

Joshua said...

Right. He was tempted, but he did not sit down and try to redeem Satan. Satan has placed himself out of redemption. We cannot assume that Ahmedinijad is beyond redemption, so the argument has little value. Again, it's based on the fallacy of false analogy.

Ryan said...

Right, I agree with the fallacy of the argument and I do agree that Jesus would not try and redeem Satan. We do agree about that. I was arguing the fact that I think Jesus would be willing (has been willing) to dialog with Satan, that's documented in Scripture...

Joshua said...

Right. I think we all agree there.

RyAn K <> said...

Are Jesus' "discussions" with Satan dialogue?

Personally, I see it as "inner dialogue" between reality and spiritual warfare as a means to defeat temptation. His reliance on the Father and not on discussions. That would mean a giving in to temptation or sin.

Jesus is most like us in this "dialogue" with Satan. We may feel the temptations of Satan, but do we physically dialogue? I tend to believe that we, as Christians, turn to God. The same happens with Jesus.

As far as Ahmedinijad, we are all born with the intentions of both good and evil. However, some are inclined to thrive in evil thoughts, environments, actions, etc. If evil is caused through tainted spiritual warfare between good and evil, then how can Ahmedinijad NOT be associated with the temptations of Satan? How can we not relate the two?

Joshua said...

I'm very sorry, but to be quite candid it seems to me as though we are grasping for differences from which an argument may spring.

Not to sound terse, but I think I'm finished with this discussion in this forum. As I have said, our current debate rests on a fundamental disagreement that we clearly will not resolve through comments on each other's blogs. I think it is important Ryan K for you and I to speak, I think we could both learn a lot from each other. But it's not happening in the blogosphere. Maybe some other method of communication would be better.

If you would like to discuss this further, feel free to email me: joshuaelek [at]

Tim 2 said...

begin sarcasm

Hahaha Iran launching missles is "Evil" by western standards...err or do you mean "double standards?"

I guess it is not "evil" for us to launch missles? It's not "evil" for the US to man the largest army on the planet and fund development of weapons which kill with greater efficiency.

I mean our administration, and their war profiteering buds have the backing of many in the christian circles, so how could our missles be evil? I mean, as long as they are pro-life missles and saving the unborn babies here in the U.S. who cares how many babies die in a firestorm in the Middle East right? And seriously, just don't put images of those babies on the television, that's too graphic for us to see, I just want my venti soy latte with 2 pumps of mocha and no foam please.

How could it possibly be evil for the US to pre-emptively strike Iraq, I mean really it is not "evil" for us to bring McDonald's and M16's to the rest of the world. After all those poor backwards people don't even get ESPN!

Did anyone ever stop and think perhaps other cultures don't want to be westernized? Did anyone ever stop to think other peoples don't want our Capitalist materialistic society?

I guess it is safe to say all of these folks just have it wrong, too bad for them really...thankfully Western culture is going to save them.

Maybe we should do ourselves a favor and look out the window, beyond our postage stamp of an existence and see what someone other than Fox News has to say?

What would it be like to grow up in Iran? What would we think then?

And maybe, just maybe the CIA doesn't want to call the 4th missile a fake, that way stupid Americans like myself freak out and say "OH THEY ARE EVIL!!! WE ARE UNSAFE, WE NEED TO STOP THEM BEFORE THEY KILL OUR BABIES!" Do you really think it is in the interest of this current administration to say, oh look those guys messed up and couldn't launch the fourth missle?...Nope.

They want people to freak out and bury their heads in the sand and cry out for the government to do something...while we give away civil liberties and pass ridiculous legislation to "Keep us safe."

Btw go to the airport, did you know that the threat level has been raised to orange? It has been at orange for years now, but the message still says "raised" with an "elevated threat level"

Take a look around, we are living out Modern McCarthyism where it is "unpatriotic" to not wear a flag lapel pin...It is unpatriotic to disagree with the policies of the administration in place, because you would not be supporting the troops. History will look back on this time period with makes me want to puke.

Great stuff...we are living out the science fiction literature of our past...and gorging ouselves on XXL cups of soda from Wal Mart, America is choking on its excesses while we are over seas forcefully trying to bring our mass manufactured, debt ridden, garbage creating culture to the rest of the world...

Evil... heh...I guess it all depends on your frame of reference.

Now I am going to go get in my expensive car and go buy some more crap to fill my closets with.

end sarcasm

RyAn K <> said...


Thanks for the "enlightening" sarcasm. I feel...cough...smarter.

Anyways, the price of freedom is not free. I am not talking about political freedom in terms of western democracy (although I believe all people should have a voice in their government constitutes), I am talking about humanistic freedom that comes with progress.

Your worldview, from your sarcasm, seems very skewed. This isn't about war, it's about influence toward a greater good (human standards of living). Do we see Japan, Germany, S. Korea, Kuwait, etc. complaining about our influence?

I'm pretty sure our presidents do not wake up in the morning and say, "yep, I think I'll go to war today so that thousands of people will die."

You honestly want to compare our motives with that of Iran? A country that has called us the devil, denied the Holocaust, and has pledged to wipe Israel off the map? A country that funds and harbors terrorists? A country that is trying to tear down the Iraq that we are trying to build up?

Our interests are not oil, the spread of Christianity, monetary gains, or what others think about us as a country. Our interests are for human progress and human freedom.

The greatest mistake we have made is giving tolerance to the intolerable.

Joshua said...

@ Tim: I see your point. America is certainly guilty of sins comparable to the sins of Iran. The WHISC or School of the America is one example. The genocide of the Native Americans is another.

I think you may have simplified the Conservative viewpoint a little bit by assuming that they do not think our missiles are evil. I think most people who support US military involvement would consider them a necessary evil. Or at least I should hope so.

I think a lot of people have asked whether or not the world wants to be Westernized. I would have to look into this, but I wonder if it would be possible to force Westernization on a people. I agree with the sentiment that we are advancing our agenda on the world, but I don't think the US goes so far as to force other parts of the world to adopt our culture.

Tim 2 said...

Nuking Japan was not evil?

The bombs killed as many as 140,000 people in Hiroshima and 80,000 in Nagasaki.

I am sure Japan loved getting Americanized.

heh, *cough* err...keep coughing...

Tim 2 said...


"Our interests are not oil, the spread of Christianity, monetary gains, or what others think about us as a country. Our interests are for human progress and human freedom."

Who is Our?

Joshua said...

You know what, that's a good point. When I said that we didn't force other nations to become Westernized, I forgot about Japan. That is an instance in which we incontrovertibly forced a people to become Westernized. We brought gun ships to their harbors and told them if they did not start trading with us, we would blow them up. So, yeah. I guess we did force Westernization on them. And, we forced it on the Native Americans. And, it would be easy to say that it appears as though we are attempting to force Western values into the Middle East right now. I see your point, and I concede that I think you're right.

Carrie Babcock said...

First off, Tim I loved your comment. Totally right on with how I feel about the country right now.

Ryan K - I am having a tough time understanding your comment "human standards of living". Who is to say that a secluded tribe who has food and water and is typically health does not have good human standards of living. The US human standard of living in my opinion is BS. We are the fattest, laziest society. Look a what McDonald's did to China. They are now dealing with an high rising number of overweight people.

We have the 2nd highest death rate of newborn babies among developed nations. Yet the medical field and insurance companies say we have "cutting edge technology" in childbirth?

How can filling our bodies with toxics everyday that cause cancer and heart disease be a good "human standard of living"?

Did you know there is a tribe in Africa that does not consume milk and has the lowest percentage of Osteoporosis among it's people. What, we need 3 glasses a day says the dairy industry. Who the hell is the dairy industry, oh wait it's the government.

I just hope our "standards of living" do not pour into other countries like most people think they need to.

I am Ryan if you have any family members currently in Iraq fighting for our freedom. My brother-in-law is over there right now and had to leave his wife and 3 daughters all for our freedom? No one has invaded this country so I do not understand when people use the phrase "fighting for our freedom". This stupid war has nothing to do with our freedom. Last time I checked Iraq was not invading our country it is the other way around.

Carrie Babcock said...

Opps...Let me correct myself. The African tribe consumes a very small amount of goats milk. Not any form of chemically induced cows milk.

RyAn K <> said...


First, thank you for the polite response.

Second, I think it is often unfair that people like you and I can sit in the comforts of our own homes and provide definitions of what true freedome is. I have a lot of conflict within myself on that issue. Frankly, I think that all of us here have absolutely no clue what is going on around us. It would be uncomprehensible to people who are not emerged the inner workings everyday.

Third, by human standards of living, I simply mean progress. Almost every civilization of people looks to progress. By progress, I do not mean wealth and war. I simply mean progressive freedoms like equality, women's rights, human rights, etc.

Fourth, you are correct in the fact that Iran and Iraq have not invaded our country. However, both countries fund and enable terrorist organizations that have and will infiltrate our borders. We currently (Ohio) have one of the highest numbers of terrorist cells in the United States. These numbers continually grow through the funding and use of propoganda that are supported by countries like Iran and Iraq.

My wife's cousin is also in Iraq. Due to his detail, we do not get to hear from him when he is away, but the stories are heart breaking. He tells us how these people (Afghanistan and Iraq) beg and pled for protection from insurgents that collect ransom and basically conduct business mofia style. For example, the 1.3 million Christians who have been persecuted. That number is now down to 700,000 because of the injustices that are committed against them on a daily basis(see my blog for the article).

If anyone believes that terrorism is irrelevant and manageable, we only need to step away from our borders to feel and see this threat.

RyAn K <> said...


Japan brought us into World War II by killing over 2,500 soldiers and civilians at Pearl Harbor. This bombing led us to declare war, a war in which we would lose over 500,000 men.
I'm not sure what the point of your statement was. At no time in our brief history has the chief goal of our military operations been anything other than the advancement of freedom from tyranical governments.

Tim 2 said...

mmmm that kool aid sure looks good.

Tim 2 said...

I sure am glad I don't live in Ohio anymore, sounds pretty dangerous. Btw sorry to get into this garbage on your blog Josh...

I am done typing words for this Ryan K fellow...

Joshua said...

I'm sorry Ryan, but I cannot ignore this. Do you know what the US Military did to the Native Americans? Do you know that genocide was performed by the US Armed forces? Yes, it was a different time, but it was still the US Army. You said that at no time in our brief history have we fought for anything other than freedom. I think handing out small pox infested blankets and raping women and children Native Americans would not qualify as fighting for freedom.

What about the people who were tortured to death in the Abu Ghraib prison?

What about the people being held for eight years without trial in Guantanamo Bay?

The Japanese killed 2,000 soldiers and men in the US Navy during the attack on Pearl Harbor, yes. We bombed cities. Cities full of civilians, not military. Hiroshima and Nagasaki are not analogs to Pearl Harbor.

If the US Army only fights for freedom, why did we do nothing in Rwanda? Why are we doing nothing in Darfur right now? Why do we not care about Mugabe?

Are you familiar with the School of the Americas? The School the US Department of Defense uses to teach Latin American terrorist groups how to torture, kidnap, disrupt elections and murder families of their targets? The Pentagon put together a MANUAL with those strategies in it. I'm not making this stuff up Ryan, look into it. The US is not the shining city on a hill.

I agree that the US has done much good. But it has done much bad. We cannot permit our spotted history to be whitewashed.

RyAn K <> said...

See, this is what tends to happen in dialogues like this. Words get put into people's mouths.

I, simply, was talking about our military situation in Iran and Iraq. I, simply, think that the threat of global terrorism should not be taken lightly.

Somehow, this thread went from Iran missles to overweight McDonalds customers and a tribe that doesn't drink milk???

Anyways, I am not naive. I consider myself a well-read individual and I understand the many war crimes that have been done by us and every single civilization that has ever existed. That is a fallen world for you.


I am sorry that you and I disagree. I am even more sorry that you cannot dialogue in a respectful and meaningful way. Our views may be different, but that is how progress is made. Running away from conversations does no one any good. My guess, we are propbably all wrong anyways.

My views may be more conservative, but I seriously worry about how our generation sees the world. It seems as though we have given into many of the liberal ideologies that undercut our morals and values. My views may be more conservative, but they are views and should be accepted as such.

None of us have all the answers. We need to remember that.

Joshua said...

Ryan, in our dialogues, I have tried very hard to remain polite. I am trying to do so still. I do not think I have failed to been polite. I agree, Tim doesn't concern himself with niceties as much. But let's be honest: "Thanks for the "enlightening" sarcasm. I feel...cough...smarter" isn't necessarily the most polite way to open what you referred to as a polite dialogue. You have not been the most polite person to speak with. I don't want to be mean, but I do want to be honest.

I think it is important for us as Christians to disagree in a way that is different from the rest of the world.

And the comments that you had so much trouble with, the comments about milk and the tribe, those came from Carrie. She was the only person that you thanked for being polite. Then, you later knocked her for bringing up something that was unrelated.

And I don't think I put any words into your mouth Ryan K. You said, "At no time in our brief history has the chief goal of our military operations been anything other than the advancement of freedom from tyranical governments." I was responding to that statement.