Not the First Time Death Photos Displayed
I'm kind of surprised at the minor rumbling about the displaying of photos of Uday and Qusay Hussein. Sure, the photos are unpleasant. Who would expect otherwise?
If you follow the above link, you will see the purpose of releasing photos of dead dictators realized: the iraqi people have the proof. That's important since they probably don't believe much of what they hear right now. They've had Hussein's message force-fed on them for years, and as a result, probably view American information as propaganda. A picture is proof, in addition to being worth 1,000 words.
But this isn't the first time.
Recall 1989, and the execution of the Ceaucescus. The executioners did their work before the camera so that their countrymen would know positively that the Dictator of Rumania and his wife were indeed those being taken out back and shot.
Mussolini, the Fascist Dictator of Italy, similarly had his death displayed. He and his mistress were shot and then hung upside down in a marketplace, where the locals took pleasure in mutilating the corpses.
In all cases, the purpose was the same: to let the people see the truth, and to begin to fear reprisal a little less for the "crime" of speaking freely.
Interestingly enough, Saddam is reputed to have a copy of the Ceaucescu execution tape, and to watch it frequently as a sort of inspiration against suffering the same fate.