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asymm e t ri c

wa rf are


asymmetric warfare Lea Hershkowitz


asymmetric warfare:

1. War between belligerents whose relative military power differs significantly, or whose strategy or tactics differ significantly. 2. Warfare in which new technology is used to defeat the superior with the inferior. 3. Warfare in which an opponent leverages inferior tactical or operational strength against the vulnerabilities of a superior opponent to achieve disproportionate effect with the aim of undermining the opponent’s will in order to achieve the asymmetric actor’s strategic objectives.


In the context of this book, the use of the term asymmetric warfare is a metaphor, which identifies the unbalance in relation to access to technology, photography, and the media within Middle Eastern countires we are feuding or at war with. The use of photography, specifically in our current media, has encapsulated the people whom inhabit the Middle Eastern countries our culture has been historically, and presently, tied to through our disproportionate leverage over photography and mass media. This book identifies photography as a primary weapon contributing to our cultures misperception of “the Middle East”.

The images in this book were found in a variety of sources; from current mass media sources to historical images from the Library of Congress’ webpage. Images were also chosen from printed sources available through the Crossett Library at Bennington College. The images date from the late 1800’s to 2011. The online mass media sources used were CNN, The New York Times, Fox News, and Time Magazine. In an attempt to gather a random sample of photographs from each of these webpages, the term “the Middle East” was searched and the first five links produced, and the images associated with each link, were chosen from each site. Images from the Library of Congress’ photographic archive were chosen in a similar manner. The printed sources from the Crossett Library were chosen through a search of “the Middle East” within the library’s database. Five photographic books were identified through a search of this term. All of the images identified as being from Middle Eastern countries were scanned and used in this book.


Lea Hershkowitz  

asymmetric warfare

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