Pictures you'll never see

In the age of the sex tapes, sexting, and the Internet it’s hard to believe that there are images in existence that haven’t been seen by the general public. But there are pictures that exist, safely put away, that you’ll probably never see.


Princess Diana

The general public has a love/hate relationship with the Tabloid media. They view the Tabloids, even media in general, as scum but at the same time will buy every copy to read about Britney’s new exploit. The British media is probably one of the worst in the world but the Brit Tabloid have one line they won’t cross, The Princess Diana Crash Pictures.

At the crash a number of tabloid photographers were present and some if not all took a few pictures before being removed from the area. They promptly sold their images to the Tabloids for hundreds of thousands of dollars. But then the images that would have the mags millions in sales became worthless when around 4 A.M. August 31, 1997 Diana died.

Sun cover

Surprisingly is that the Tabloids refuse to publish the photos they have in their possession. Even after a decade they won’t publish any images that show the Princess in the car or being carried away in the ambulance. Not only that but when one Italian paper published ONE fuzzy picture of Diana the British tabloids screamed bloody murder.

This supposed moral fibre is linked to the circumstances of Diana’s death. The paparazzi photographers supposedly pulled away once Diana was in the tunnel but even if they weren’t present when her Mercedes slammed into the tunnel wall they contributed to her death. After her death the coverage was focused on the photographers and how the cult of celebrity was out of control especially the paparazzi pack that surrounded Diana. The public’s rage started to turn against the media, fearing cries for regulation the tabloids successfully switched the focus of the public from the media circus to the supposed, “cold reaction” of the Queen and the Royal establishment.

Jessica Lynch

The Jessica Lynch saga during the American Invasion of Iraq was one of the main media events of the war. A pretty blonde girl rescued from the evil Iraqis by American military might made news and dominated the cable news cycles. The Whitehouse seeing a media coup quickly made her into a hero for her actions. We would later find her heroics consisted of getting into a car accident and after falling unconscious becoming an American P.O.W.

After she recovered from her injuries she, realised that she was being used by the Whitehouse media machine and bravely spoke out against her portrayal as a war hero.

It was these actions that created another set of images that we will probably never see. Around the time of the Lynch media storm her former Army comrades were calling the tabloids offering to sell Lynch in a, “comprising” positions and in various stages of undress.

Larry Flint, the owner of Hustler, promptly snapped up the images. However, Flint was so impressed by Lynch speaking out against her portrayal that he stated, “I was offered photos of Jessica Lynch. I purchased them in order to keep them out of circulation, not to publish them,”

Abu Ghraib

We’ve all seen the human pyramid and fake electrocution of Iraqi detainees at the Abu Ghraib prison. But these are just a select few of the images that made their way into the hands of the media. Many more are still in pentagon hands. The ACLU tried to get them released in 2009 and Obama initially agreed to their release but then did an abrupt about face and set in motion legal measures to block their release. As of Oct 2009 Congress was set to legally allow the Pentagon to suppress the pictures.

Princess Margaret

Princess Margaret

On September 13, 1971 British thieves tunnelled into the vault of Lloyds Bank on Baker Street in London and ransacked the safety deposit boxes. They were able to make off with hundreds of thousands pounds of jewellery and cash. In the rush to get out of the bank they also took some documents and pictures from the safety deposit boxes.

You have what picture?

One of the boxes belonged to infamous gangster Michael X a black gangster activist who had sexually compromising pictures of Princess Margaret, the younger sister of Queen Elizabeth II. In the 60s and 70s Margaret led a very un-Royal lifestyle on her estate on the Caribbean island of Mustique. Margaret would photograph her friends as they frolicked naked on the beaches and grounds of her estate.

Michael X was able to use these images as a sort of get out of jail free card. When the British government found out the gang had the images they immediately issued a D Notice, or government order that forbids the press from reporting on certain events. The D Notice is usually used for national security reasons but they used it for this bank heist.

Plot sound familiar? Probably because they used the events as the basis of the Jason Statham movie, The Bank Job. The government and Royal family of course deny the existence of the images and could prove it by releasing the Michael X’s file. Normally this would be no problem, he was killed in 1975 but the British government has classified his file until 2054! Nothing suspicious there!

Steve Irwin snuff film

On September 4, 2006 Steve Irwin was filming some shots for his documentary, Ocean’s Deadliest. Weather wasn’t cooperating so he decided to film some scenes for another doc he was doing for his daughter. It was while filming some routine shots of stingrays when, according to his friend and colleague, John Stainton, he swam too close to one of the stingrays. “He came on top of the stingray and the stingray’s barb went up and into his chest and put a hole into his heart,” said Stainton, who was on board Irwin’s boat the Croc One. Despite the efforts of Steve’s crew Irwin died a short while later.

The events were caught on camera, and a copy of the footage was handed to the Queensland Police. The police viewed the footage and passed it on to Irwin’s family who claim to have destroyed the footage but rumours have it that copies were made while in police hands.

Crikey! A stingray … really?

The documentary that Steve was filming was eventually released on the Discovery Channel on 21 January 2007. His death is not mentioned in the film, aside from a still image of Irwin at the end alongside the text “In Memory of Steve Irwin”.

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