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The Man from Fallujah


PDN has an intriguing look at the life and work of Bilal Hussein, the Pulitzer-winning AP photographer who was recently arrested by U.S. military forces on terrorism-related charges. The U.S. military has until December 9th to produce its evidence against Hussein in an Iraqi court but reporter Daryl Lang notes that the Hussein's arrest may be linked to his unsparing and critical photographs from the war zone.

Conservative U.S. blogs routinely critique war photographs that don't portray U.S. military actions in a positive light. But few individual photographers have been singled out the way Hussein has been.

Blogs like that of columnist Michelle Malkin, The Jawa Report and Little Green Footballs have been following Hussein almost obsessively since his career began in 2004.

In two cases, it appears U.S. military sources fed the blogs information about Hussein that had not been made public elsewhere.

Anger over Hussein first erupted after the AP published his pictures of the armed insurgents in Fallujah. It reached a boil after the November 2004 AP article quoted Hussein claiming a U.S. helicopter fired on civilians fleeing Fallujah.

"I decided to swim" across a river to safety, Hussein said in the article. "But I changed my mind after seeing U.S. helicopters firing on and killing people who tried to cross the river." Hussein said he saw a family of five shot dead, and that he helped bury a man by the river bank .

An example of Hussein's work: 


A young girl receives treatment at a hospital Sept.17, 2004 after U.S. airstrikes in Fallujah.
(AP Photo/Bilal Hussein)


Women of Courage: Intimate Stories from Afghanistan

My friends Katherine Kiviat and Scott Heidler have a new book out. It is worth a look.

The press synopsis:

JERUSALEM—September 2007—The world remembers the stomach-turning television news images of innocent Afghan women executed in the Kabul stadium, and the stories of women being beaten in the streets of Afghanistan for infractions that seem frivolous to a Westerner—letting their hair be seen or leaving their family compound without permission. The world remembers the quick overthrow of the Taliban just months after the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, and the new images of free Afghan women rushing to beauty salons to coif their hair, and little girls wearing crisp new uniforms streaming into classrooms—the first time for most of them going to lessons outside underground, secret schools. But what is the situation like now for the women of Afghanistan after the world’s attention has left?

In Women of Courage: Intimate Stories from Afghanistan ($19.95; Hardcover; September 2007),  photojournalist Katherine Kiviat and Fox News Middle East Correspondent Scott Heidler offer a new glimpse of the true stories and incredible work Afghan women are doing to push for continued reform and maintain the freedoms they have so recently won back.

With the courage of Afghan heroines from many walks of life—privileged/poor, educated/simple, athletic/disabled, politically connected/rural, self-promoting/motherly—change is taking flight. It is here, in the pages of Women of Courage, where compelling photographs and unfiltered interviews will allow you to look into the eyes and read the words of some of these heroines. From a Bread Maker to a Presidential Candidate, a University Student to a Bee Keeper, and a Fortune Teller to an Afghan National Army Helicopter Pilot, these women are all agents of change in their future, in their country, trying to make a better tomorrow for themselves and their daughters..

Never Coming Home

I wanted to alert everyone to Andrew Lichtenstein's excellent new book, Never Coming Home, a poignant and heartbreaking look at the human toll of the war in Iraq. Also, a video of the same-titled series Andrew participated in can be found here. I would also encourage you to take a look at Andrew's other work, including his series on prison life and its costs. Cover Back Publisher's Description: America lies thousands of miles from the deserts of Iraq, and its civilians are rarely truly forced to confront the fact that it is a nation at war, and has been for more than four years. But every day, the list of casualties grows longer. The men and women killed in Iraq are buried every week back home. Their funerals are not dramatic national events, and they are rarely sites of political soul searching. Most families want to grieve privately, to remember their children as they knew them and as heroes who have died for all of us. Photographer Andrew Lichtenstein says of his prizewinning work, 'These funerals are about paying tribute to promising lives cut drastically short. There are some funerals that I never take the camera out of the bag. And then there are others that allow us, I can only hope, to begin to feel the true cost of war.' Lichtenstein's work has appeared in the New York Times, Time, Newsweek, Harper's, the Atlantic Monthly and Aperture, among other publications. In this powerful new portrait of grief and sacrifice, he documents the families of eight American soldiers killed in Iraq. With interviews of the families by StoryCorps oral history producer and Slate and MSNBC contributor Zachary Barr. Never Coming Home is a project by Andrew Lichtenstein and Robert Peacock.


Which Photo Agency Is Hardest To Deal With? (Please use the comment section to address some of the issues you see.)
Agency VU
Lookat Photos
Zuma Press
Total votes: 690
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