Friday, September 21, 2012

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 2123:
The "White Widow" Samantha Lewthwaite's -
What does Her Falsified Passport Photo Tell Us?

This image is taken from a falsified South African passport (alias Natalie Faye Webb) used by Samantha Lewthwaite aka “The White Widow”.  Her husband, Germaine Lindsay, was one of the suicide bombers whom on 7 July 2005 collectively killed 52 innocent people and wounded over 700 in four terrorist attacks targeting London public transportation system - three nearly simultaneous acts against Underground trains and another later on a double-decker bus. Initially, Ms. Lewthwaite, who had two children with Lindsay, denied his involvement. Later when forensic evidence proved the contrary, she said that her husband’s “innocent, naive and simple” mind had been “poisoned”. She is now believed to be a member of a terrorist cell with activity in East Africa. Along with Scotland Yard the Kenyan police are on the hunt for her. It is believed she may be recruiting and training an all-female group of Mujahid (holy warriors) and to have crossed into Tanzania on Boxing Day 2011.

Lewthwaite’s faked passport photo shows several signals consistent with contempt-arrogance. A highly characteristic nonverbal displayed here is her left nostril flaring. This coexists with a slight left-sided bias smile – which in this context is another clear body language signal betraying her true feelings. Since this was a counterfeit passport, this expression betrays a version of “duping delight”.  Another facial configuration signifying contempt-arrogance is her partially closed “droopy” lids (Care must be taken to eliminate ptosis - that is, droopy lids from a medical, surgical, traumatic, congenital, etc. causes – which here, when compared with older photos is not present).

She of course knew the purpose of her home-made passport and when this photo was taken she was unquestionably feeling contempt. If you’re interrogating a person with these facial signals as a suspect or questioning them during a deposition – you need to dig deeper. And if you’re picking a jury, eliminate immediately anyone with this cluster of nonverbals.

See also:

Analysis # 457: Salman Rushdie - and a Contempt Amplifier

Analysis # 2059: Musharraf has Contempt towards Pakistan's Intelligence Agency

Analysis # 2111: Mitt Romney on Libya Embassy Killings - Multiple Contempt Displays

Analysis # 2115: Prince Harry in Afghanistan - Incredulity & Contempt

Analysis # 2050: George Zimmerman's Interview on Fox - Microexpression of Contempt and Duping Delight

Analysis # 140: Duping Delight Microexpression