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05/10/2012

Editor's Choice Pictures of the Day - Horst Faas Retrospective - May 10, 2012

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Horst Faas, a prize-winning combat photographer who carved out new standards for covering war with a camera and became one of the world's legendary photojournalists in nearly half a century with The Associated Press, died Thursday May 10, 2012. He was 79.  Here's a look at some of his award winning images.

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In this June 1965 photo, South Vietnamese civilians, among the few survivors of two days of heavy fighting, huddle together in the aftermath of an attack by government troops to retake the post at Dong Xoai, Vietnam.

 

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In this Jan. 1, 1966  photo, two South Vietnamese children gaze at an American paratrooper holding an M79 grenade launcher as they cling to their mothers who huddle against a canal bank for protection from Viet Cong sniper fire in the Bao Trai area, 20 miles west of Saigon, Vietnam.

 

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In this March 1965 photo, hovering U.S. Army helicopters pour machine gun fire into the tree line to cover the advance of South Vietnamese ground troops in an attack on a Viet Cong camp 18 miles north of Tay Ninh, Vietnam, northwest of Saigon near the Cambodian border.

 

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In this Jan. 1, 1966 photo, women and children crouch in a muddy canal as they take cover from intense Viet Cong fire at Bao Trai, about 20 miles west of Saigon, Vietnam.

 

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In this December 1965 photo, a U.S. 1st Division soldier guards Route 7 as Vietnamese women and school children return home to the village of Xuan Dien from Ben Cat, Vietnam.

 

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In this March 19, 1964 file photo, one of several shot by Associated Press photographer Horst Faas which earned him the first of two Pulitzer Prizes, a father holds the body of his child as South Vietnamese Army Rangers look down from their armored vehicle. The child was killed as government forces pursued guerrillas into a village near the Cambodian border.

 

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In this Aug. 1962 photo, South Vietnamese government troops from the 2nd Battalion of the 36th Infantry sleep in a U.S. Navy troop carrier on their way back to the Provincial capital of Ca Mau, Vietnam.

 

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In this Jan. 9, 1964 file photo one of several shot by Associated Press photographer Horst Faas, earning him the first of two Pulitzer Prizes, a South Vietnamese soldier uses the end of a dagger to beat a farmer for allegedly supplying government troops with inaccurate information about the movement of Viet Cong guerrillas in a village west of Saigon, Vietnam.

 

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In this April 2, 1967 photo, a wounded U.S. soldier is given water on a battlefield in Vietnam.

 

 

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In this Jan. 16,1966,  Lt. Col. George Eyster of Florida is placed on a stretcher after being shot by a Viet Cong sniper at Trung Lap, South Vietnam.

 

 

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In this May 11, 1965 file photo, Associated Press photographer Horst Faas tries to get back on a U.S. helicopter after a day out with Vietnamese rangers in a flooded plain of reeds.

 

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In this undated file photo, Associated Press photographer Horst Faas is shown on assignment with soldiers in South Vietnam.

 

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Associated Press photographer Horst Faas is shown in this undated file photo in Ca Mau, Vietnam.

 

Comments

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Photographers and newsmen are the real heroes of any war like Vietnam. They attempt to bring the truth home to us and to history, in spite of military censorship and propaganda.

The Vietnam war was an extension of Kennedy's Domino theory, executed by his successors. In his theory Communism must be stopped at all costs else it will spread everywhere like dominoes falling. It is politicians who are the real villains of any war, even if unwitting, like Kennedy in Vietnam, and his Caribbean misadventures, (and arguably the Bush presidents in the Middle East -- but Bush theory replaces Communists with Terrorists of course).

We won't see the types of pictures that Horst Faas took coming from any current war-torn country. Journalists were allowed to roam free in Vietnam. They could photograph and report on whatever they wanted. Now the military restricts the movements of journalists. Whatever they report on or photograph is screened before it can be released. That way the "horrors of war" remains a phrase with no images.

This shows both the Ugly and Humanitarian side of the War
Rakesh Kumar

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