“I believe this was not an act of desperation, but an act of asymmetrical warfare waged against us.”
Rear Adm Harry Harris, Guantanamo Bay Camp commander
Kurt Vonnegut’s novel Slaugherhouse Five considers time travel, Tralfamadorians, and the 1945 firebombing of Dresden, Germany, which slaughtered tens of thousands of civilians. Vonnegut was there as a POW. He saw the aftermath of the bombing, an episode that might be said to have altered his comic perspective. Here he reads an excerpt from the book.
The photographer Alexander Gardner recorded the unromantic aftermath of the bloodiest day in American history. In September 1862, he came to the Battle of Antietam after some 4,000 soldiers were killed in a 12-hour period. He may well have been the first photographer to document the battlefield dead.
An article in Slate which tells the story displays a curious title: “The Battlefield Photos That Changed Everything.” Realistic photographs of war have made an impact, but have they really changed “everything” — or indeed, anything?
“What do you think an artist is? An imbecile who has nothing but eyes if he is a painter, or ears if he is a musician, or a lyre at every level of his heart if he is a poet, or nothing but muscles if he is a boxer? Quite the contrary, he is at the same time a political being, constantly aware of what goes on in the world, whether it be harrowing, bitter, or sweet, and he cannot help being shaped by it. How would it be possible not to take an interest in other people, and to withdraw into an ivory tower from participation in their existence? No, painting is not interior decoration. It is an instrument of war for attack and defense against the enemy.”
Pablo Picasso, 1945
Shepherd Fairey’s tender evocation of the loving patriotic family. Cherish your bombs, for one day they must go out into the world.
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If you have questions or problems, it’s nice to know there’s someone to talk to. Tom Tomorrow’s Droney is most reassuring. “We get to do whatever we want — forever!”
As we all know, the greatest artist of the last 10,000 years was the American master Thomas Kinkade. His exquisite works evoked the essential glory of the U.S. nation.
Alas, Kinkade died a few years ago and now it’s apparent there’s a glaring deficit in his work — no drones. Artist Anthony Freda comes to the rescue here in this short, stirring video.
From our gallery of ongoing YouTube INFILTRATIONS. A report on Syrian child war refugees via the pop kitsch of Japanese girl band Girl Generation.