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Monday, 28 May 2012


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When I see images like these it becomes impossible for me to embrace our rationalizations for any war. How can it possibly be worth it?

If only the American summer season did not begin with a holiday devoted to such sadness. What can we say -- what can we ever say -- to all the "Katherine Cathey"s?

These are heartbreaking photographs, made well and made with empathy and respect. The second one--showing the casket being removed from the plane--is particularly poignant in light of prohibitions in recent years on photo-journalists showing military caskets in transit. The passengers staring out the windows are witness to what the public must see, i.e., the terrible price that is paid.


The picture with the people looking out of the airplane window has stuck with me since the first time that I saw it. All other considerations aside, this is a perfect example of a picture telling a story.

If you haven't already seen it, watch the HBO movie called "Taking Chance", a take on the same subject and quite moving.

Oh, wow. Just wow.

Todd Heisler's 2006 Pulitzer Prize photos are by far the best Memorial Day shots we could have.

The full set is here...

"To be free of violence implies freedom from everything that man has put to another man, belief, dogma, rituals, my country, your country, your god and my god, my opinion, your opinion, my ideal. All those help to divide human beings and therefore breed violence." —Jiddu Krishnamurti, from Beyond Violence,
San Diego State College 3rd Public Talk 7th April 1970

There is precious little grace, dignity, and honor left in our culture today. Todd Heisler's three photographs and three captions show us where these tenets still live.

OK so is this why B&H is shut and not taking orders I assume.

Chilling shot of the plane passengers. Amazing.

Lazy Aussie,
No, I believe B&H is closed because it's Shavuot:

The festival of Shavuot (or Shavuos, in Ashkenazi usage; Shabhuʿoth in Classical and Mizrahi Hebrew Hebrew: שבועות, lit. "Weeks") is a Jewish holiday that occurs on the sixth day of the Hebrew month of Sivan (late May or early June). Shavuot commemorates the anniversary of the day God gave the Torah to the entire Israelite nation assembled at Mount Sinai, although the association between the giving of the Torah (Matan Torah) and Shavuot is not explicit in the Biblical text. The holiday is one of the Shalosh Regalim, the three Biblical pilgrimage festivals. It marks the conclusion of the Counting of the Omer.

(Source: Hebcal)



The photos are moving. Canada has always done peace-keeping missions, the Afghanistan
conflict is the first time we in Canada also experienced war-dead being returned back to Canada in recent memory.
We have been affected in much the same ways;
our "Memorial" day is November 11, Remembrance Day to honour all those who fought in past conflicts and for the future as well.

Canada did not invade Iraq, as did the US and the United Kingdom

Very moving. I am still very bitter when I think about how my generation (Vietnam Vets) were treated when they came home. To see everyone saying "Thanks for your service" To all servicemen whether they served in a war zone or not just upsets me.

It's kind of interesting to compare the John Slaytor photos with the second photograph of the passengers looking out of the airplane window.

I am a Viet Nam era Vet. To see people saying "Thank you for your service" to current Vets and Soldiers warms my heart. Remember most of the people saying this remember how it was after Viet Nam, and say never again.

Mr. Heislers photographs brought tears to my eyes,they are moving and real.

Freedom is not free

Mr Heisler Thank You.

You do not "make a sacrifice". Nobody does. You gamble. Good luck / bad luck. It's the fortune of war.

Thank you for reblogging my 'Todd Heisler - Image Gallery' post.

Hopefully, we'll be more careful about getting into other war(s).

jon; a.k.a. seattle98

Owen Auer, if I had the money I'd bring you to Plymouth, Michigan next Memorial Day. For 10 years or more, the tradition is that the Vietnam veterans lead off the parade. From the time the vets turn the corner onto the Main Street parade route, the crowd, the whole crowd, stands and applauds as the Vietnam veterans pass by. The applause is so loud that it drowns out the sound of the group's leader calling out the cadence. I was born in 1955 and missed Vietnam by about a year. But I'll never forget the boys from the neighborhood, just 2-3 years older than me, who never came back.
You are very right to be upset by the treatment Vietnam vets received when they returned stateside. Times were crazy then, and they're crazy now. But it's time to come home, brother.

Seeing these shots makes me realize how much I miss the Rocky Mountain News. Nothing against the Denver Post and their excellent photographers, but the Rocky always seemed to be on another level, photographically.

Great pictures but Im uneasy about the image of his wife sleeping in the room with her husband's body.

Of course, she gave her permission for this photograph, but If I was the photographer I might have said, " bless you and take your necessary moment, good night." and turned my camera's off.

The world demands photographs of everything and sometimes we need to back away and let things occur without snapping away. No real judgement of the photographer, just a recoil against the sometimes egregious documentation of everything.


Thank you.

"Only the dead have seen the end of war"

When will we ever learn...

"Non Sibi Sed Patriae"
"Not for self, but for country"


Thank you.

It is the duty of every able bodied American to protect the innocent. Those Marines who stood watch that night understood, as do many of the rest of us who served.

Eloquent testimony to the insanity of war. Thanks.

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