Much has been made of the psychotic homicidal bogus “signing” interpreter at Mandela’s funeral, but there’s a small sidelight that merits our attention, and the Daily Cannibal award for Photo of the Year. In the initial editions of the New York Times, the photo featured above, by Stephen Crowley, accompanied their article. For reasons we are about to explain, this image was quickly scrubbed by the online edition, and replaced by a montage.
Take a good look. Since the original image is nowhere to be found online (parts of it are, but not the whole thing), we took a picture of the picture with our trusty iPhone. Note that there are three images in the picture:
1. Obama, speaking, on the far left.
2. The interpreter, standing just a foot or so away.
3. In the background, a Jumbotron or some such device, with a head shot of Mandela.
Note two interesting things. First, the scowling interpreter appears clearly to be giving Obama the universal sign language gesture for something that we need not explain further here, but whose vulgarity and hostility are unquestioned worldwide. Who says this guy doesn’t know sign language? Second, Mandela, with an enormous grin, seems to be immensely enjoying the sight of the most powerful man in the free world getting flipped off in front of a global television audience.
Finally, we would ask you to recall that during his recent trip to South Africa, Obama attempted to visit the dying Mandela, and was rebuffed. Rumors, perhaps unfounded, circulated that Mandela did not wish to be a prop in yet another carefully-staged Obama photo op.
Well, Mr. President, here’s your picture with Nelson Mandela. And congratulations, Mr. Crowley, on giving us the most memorable photograph of 2013. The Times scrubbed your image from the internet, but this may be the high point of your distinguished career, so we’re putting it back.