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Alternate History: Robert Capa on D-Day (33)

Capa scholarship has ignored completely the other photographic records of the morning of the invasion, neither comparing Capa’s images of the scene with documentation by others nor making any attempt to integrate them into the larger visual narrative of that day on Omaha Beach. […]

Alternate History: Robert Capa and John Morris (d)

Prior to his centennial confession to James Estrin of the New York Times that our conclusions in this investigation have proved correct in almost every particular, John Morris worked feverishly to cover his tracks. This ill-conceived effort took the form of a series of madcap variations on his original fable of the famous emulsion melt that purportedly ruined Capa’s D-Day negatives. […]

Alternate History: Robert Capa and John Morris (c)

Robert Capa’s habit of self-invention proved contagious for John Morris, his self-styled “adopted brother,” both of them prone to the condition Steven Colbert named “truthiness,” which he formally defined as “the belief in what you feel to be true rather than what the facts will support.” […]

Alternate History: Robert Capa and John Morris (b)

Clearly, Capa fudged the truth and even lied outright whenever it served his purposes, telling multiple versions of his anecdotes and choosing his sometimes extreme variations according to how he gauged his listeners and the professional consequences of his disclosures. For reasons of his own, John Morris still chooses — at least publicly — not to see it that way. […]

Alternate History: Robert Capa and John Morris (a)

So we end up back where we started out — but with a considerable twist: a major newspaper putting its imprimatur on our revisionist version of the Capa D-Day story, and the originator and most dedicated teller of that now-tattered tale, John G. Morris, at long last ceasing and desisting from repeating yet again his discredited version. […]