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March 18, 2005

Your Turn: Winging It

Economistspycover1

The BAG’s crack team of image analysts did such an acute and thoughtful job of deconstructing the NYTimes Magazine Mahmoud Abbas cover (Fitting the Fabric – link), I thought I’d offer additional stimulus for commentary. 

Obviously, the one liner here is: “The fly on the wall.”  However, I think there’s more in play on this latest cover of The Economist.  Surprisingly, I found myself taking a good long time to study it.

To provide a little more context, here’s the teaser on their home page:

In the wake of failures over September 11th 2001 and the Iraq war two years ago, intelligence-gathering is being reformed on both sides of the Atlantic. The task is daunting …

And, here’s the lead-in to the story on the linked page:

AN ARMY without secret agents, Sun Tzu observed 2,500 years ago in The Art of War, is exactly like a man without eyes and ears. From Moses and Caesar to Churchill and Stalin, rulers have made use of spies to ferret out useful information about their opponents, both at home and abroad. Yet even as governments have built up their intelligence services, they have cursed the failings of their spies: their cost, their tendency to break the law and, above all, their habit of getting things wrong.…

So there it is.  Have fun!

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