Taliban Shoots Pakistani Schoolgirl, Advocate of Education for Girls

Taliban Shoots Pakistani Schoolgirl, Advocate of Education for Girls

When she was only 11 years old, Malala Yousafzai stood up to the Taliban by giving voice to her dreams. As turbaned Taliban fighters swept through her town in northwestern Pakistan in 2009, the tiny schoolgirl spoke out about her passion for education. She wanted to become a doctor, she said, and became a symbol of defiance against Taliban subjugation.

On Tuesday, masked Taliban gunmen answered Ms. Yousafzai’s courage with bullets, singling out the 14-year-old on a bus filled with terrified schoolchildren and shooting her in the head. Two other girls were also wounded in the attack. All three survived, but on Wednesday a neurologist said Ms. Yousafzai was in critical condition at a hospital in Peshawar, though doctors had been able to remove a bullet. Arrangements have been made to send Ms. Yousafzai abroad for treatment, but she could not be moved for now. The two other wounded girls were reported to be in stable condition.

A Taliban spokesman, Ehsanullah Ehsan, confirmed by phone Tuesday that Ms. Yousafzai had been the target, calling her crusade for education rights an “obscenity.” Mr. Ehsan added that if she survived, the militants would certainly try to kill her again. “Let this be a lesson.” That Ms. Yousafzai’s voice could be deemed a threat to the Taliban, that they could see the young schoolgirl’s death as desirable and justifiable, is being seen as evidence of both the militants’ brutality and her courage.

Ms. Yousafzai first came to public attention in 2009, when the Pakistani Taliban swept through Swat, a picturesque valley once famed for its music, tolerance and honeymoon destinations. Her father ran one of the last schools to defy Taliban orders to end female education. As an 11-year-old, Malala wrote an anonymous blog documenting her experiences for the BBC. Later, she was the focus of documentaries by The New York Times and other media outlets. “I had a terrible dream yesterday with military helicopters and the Taliban,” she wrote in one blog post titled “I Am Afraid.”

A government reward of more than $100,000 has been announced by the provincial information minister for information leading to the arrest of Malala’s attackers. “Whoever has done it is not a human and does not have a human soul,” he said. Across the rest of the country, Pakistanis reacted with outrage to the attack on Malala, whose eloquent and determined advocacy of education for girls had made her a powerful symbol of resistance to Taliban ideology.

Read more about young Malala Yousafzai in The New York Times here.

Documentary About Malala Yousafzai, Pakistani Girl Shot by the Taliban: Class Dismissed

Shot by the Taliban, Young Malala Yousafzai Struggles for Life

Please Share This:

Share

Lest We Forget: Standing Fast Against the Yokes of Bondage

Lest We Forget: Standing Fast Against the Yokes of Bondage

Don’t blame the devil
for the evils of man.

Lest We Forget is an award-winning 5-min. live-action short film directed by Brandon McCormick and produced by Whitestone Motion Pictures. Rich in cinematographic beauty, the film is set in a time of mortal combat during the Civil War and follows a lone soldier running away from or towards something; the only clue is a single key in his possession.

Lest We Forget serves as a poignant reminder that nobody lives in vain, and that sometimes someone even manages not to die in vain, even though every victim of every war is an unforgivable sin. Stand fast, therefore, in the liberty that has made us free, and let us not be entangled again with the yokes of bondage.

Lest We Forget: Standing Fast Against the Yokes of Bondage

(Best Viewed Here in HD Full-Screen Mode)

Please Share This:

Share

“Welcome Home: The Story of Scott Ostrom” Awarded 2012 Pulitzer Prize

Welcome Home, Soldier: The Story of Scott Ostrom

On April 16, 2012, Denver Post photographer Craig Walker was awarded his second Pulitzer, The 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Feature Photography, for his photo-essay Welcome Home: The Story of Scott Ostrom. Previously, Walker had been named Newspaper Photographer of the Year in the Missouri School of Journalism’s Pictures of the Year International Competition for the collection of photographs he took over 27 months about soldiers engaged in the Iraq war, which included the stunning images documenting the struggles of PTSD sufferer Brian Ostrom.

After serving four years as a reconnaissance man and having deployed twice to Iraq, Ostrom, who is now 27, returned home to the U.S. with a severe case of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Since his discharge, Ostrom has struggled with the demands of daily life, from finding and keeping employment to maintaining healthy relationships. But most of all, he’s struggled to overcome his brutal and haunting memories of Iraq and his guilt for things he did and didn’t do, while fighting a war in which he no longer believes.

Read more about award-winning war photographers in the New York Times article and slideshow, Pulitzer Prizes: The Effects of War at Home (April 16, 2012) here.

Welcome Home, Soldier: The Story of Scott Ostrom

Slide Show: Welcome Home, Soldier: The Story of Scott Ostrom

(Please Click Image to View Slide Show)

Please Share This:

Share

Welcome Home, Soldier: The Story of Scott Ostrom

Welcome Home, Soldier: The Story of Scott Ostrom

Welcome Home is a series of photographs about Iraq war veteran Brian Scott Ostrom, who suffers from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, by Pulitzer Prize-winning Denver Post photographer Craig Walker. Walker has been named Newspaper Photographer of the Year in the Missouri School of Journalism’s Pictures of the Year International Competition for the collection of photographs he took over 27 months about soldiers engaged in the Iraq war, which included the stunning images documenting the struggles of PTSD sufferer Brian Ostrom.

After serving four years as a reconnaissance man and having deployed twice to Iraq, Ostrom, who is now 27, returned home to the U.S. with a severe case of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Since his discharge, Ostrom has struggled with the demands of daily life, from finding and keeping employment to maintaining healthy relationships. But most of all, he’s struggled to overcome his brutal and haunting memories of Iraq and his guilt for things he did and didn’t do, while fighting a war in which he no longer believes.

Update: On April 16, 2012, Craig Walker was awarded his second Pulitzer, The 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Feature Photography, for Welcome Home: The Story of Scott Ostrom.

For further details about Walker’s 2012 Pulitzer Prize, please read “Welcome Home: The Story of Scott Ostrom” Awarded 2012 Pulitzer Prize.

Read more about award-winning war photographers in the New York Times article and slideshow, Pulitzer Prizes: The Effects of War at Home (April 16, 2012) here.

Welcome Home, Soldier: The Story of Scott Ostrom

Slide Show: Welcome Home, Soldier: The Story of Scott Ostrom

(Please Click Image to View Slide Show)

Please Share This:

Share

Paths of Hate: The Destructive Fury of War

Paths of Hate: The Destructive Fury of War

Paths of Hate is an animated ten-minute short film directed by Damian Nenow at Platige Image, which is in the running for a 2012 Oscar for animated short films. The film was named on a list of 10 films that was released last week by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences; three to five nominees for the Oscar will be chosen from this list.

Paths of Hate contains stunning visuals that recreate a WWII-era aerial dogfight and presents a dynamic tale about the hatred that seems to be an indispensable element of human nature. Damien Nenow, a recent graduate of Poland’s Lodz Film School, has created a film of great visual power, which brilliantly shows the demons that slumber deep within the human soul and have the power to push people into the abyss of blind hate, fury and rage. The finale of the film introduces a surreal turn of events, which stands as the director’s bitter comment on the bloody destructive fury of war.

Paths of Hate: The Destructive Fury of War

Please Share This:

Share

Visions: Tim Hetherington’s Theater of War

Visions: Tim Hetherington’s Theater of War

Visions: Images of Libya from a Fallen Photographer

Last week, an upcoming gallery show of work by the late photographer Tim Hetherington was announced, the inaugural exhibition of The Bronx Documentary Center that was founded earlier this year. The exhibition, titled Visions, is a collection of never-before-seen photos by Hetherington, a British-American photographer who lived in Brooklyn. He was a longtime Vanity Fair contributor who died in April while covering the conflict in Libya, along with fellow conflict photographer and Brooklyn resident Chris Hondros.

It is amazingly ironic that the announcement of the exhibition of Tim Hetherington’s work coincided precisely with published reports that Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi, the erratic, provocative dictator who ruled Libya for 42 years, had finally met a violent and vengeful death in the hands of the Libyan forces that drove him from power.

Hetherington was most famous for his Academy Award-nominated 2010 documentary Restrepo, which he filmed with Sebastian Junger in 2007. The film follows the Army platoon assigned to what was then the most dangerous posting in Afghanistan, The Korengal Valley, to clear it of insurgents and gain the trust of the local populace. In the course of the film, the platoon builds a new outpost they name after Juan Sebastian Restrepo, a comrade who was killed during the early days of the 15-month assignment.

On April 20, Hetherington was trailing rebels in the besieged coastal city of Misurata in Libya, when he and Hondros were killed in an explosion from a rocket-propelled grenade. He left behind 40 rolls of undeveloped 220mm film. The negatives revealed a fascinating mix of what Tim called “the theater of war,” men strutting with their guns, as well as landscapes, graffiti, and men firing guns and rocket-propelled grenades in battle. And a vase of plastic flowers in a bullet-marked room. Seventeen of the prints will be on display in the Bronx Documentary Center show as 36- by 30-inch prints hanging from the ceiling on two large wood panels, beginning October 22nd.

Tim Hetherington: Always a Few Steps Ahead

Long Story Bit by Bit: Liberia Retold

Award-Winning Photographer and Film Director Tim Hetherington Killed in Libya

The Death of Award-Winning Photographer Tim Hetherington

Oscar-nominated documentary-maker Tim Hetherington, co-creator of the Sundance-winning documentary Restrepo, was killed in the besieged city of Misurata covering fighting between Muammar Gaddafi’s forces and the opposition. A British citizen who lived in New York, Hetherington had covered conflicts with sensitivity in Liberia, Afghanistan, Darfur and, in recent weeks, Libya. Hetherington was in Libya to continue his multimedia project highlighting humanitarian issues during times of war and conflict.

Photo-journalist Chris Hondros, a US Pulitzer finalist who worked for Getty Images, was also killed. Hetherington and Hondros were among eight to 10 journalists reporting from Tripoli Street in Misrata. When shooting broke out, they took shelter against a wall, which was hit by fire. Hetherington died soon after arriving at hospital. Hetherington wrote in his last post on Twitter on Tuesday: “In besieged Libyan city of Misrata. Indiscriminate shelling by Gaddafi forces. No sign of NATO.”

Restrepo won the 2010 Grand Jury Prize for Documentary at Sundance, and was a 2011 Oscar Nominee for Best Documentary, Features. The movie is a stunning chronicle of one U.S. platoon, which was posted in one of the most dangerous valleys in Afghanistan. The film was made as part of Hetherington’s ongoing mission to bring the hardships of war into the public eye.

Diary is one of Hetherington’s most recent works, a documentary short film that presents a dreamlike composition of insightful juxtapositions about his war experiences, composed of carefully conceived montages and almost inchoate sounds. It is similar in spirit to his impressionistic documentary short Sleeping Soldiers of 2009.

Viewers can read more about Tim Hetherington in The New York Times here.

Restropo: 2011 Nominated Oscar Best Documentary, Features (Trailer)

Tim Hetherington’s Disquieting ‘Diary

Tim Hetherington: Sleeping Soldiers

Photo-Gallery: Visions/Tim Hetherington’s Theater of War

(Please Click Image to View Photo-Gallery)

Please Share This:

Share

A Visionary Litany of Affirmation: A Short Commercial For Your Mind

A Visionary Litany of Affirmation: A Short Commercial For Your Mind

I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness,
starving hysterical naked,
dragging themselves through the negro streets at dawn,
looking for an angry fix,
Angel-headed hipsters burning for the ancient heavenly connection,
to the starry dynamo in the machinery of night.

-Allen Ginsberg

A Short Commercial for Your Mind is a tumbling, hallucinatory one-minute experimental/art short film by Daniel Mancina. A visionary litany of affirmation, the film presents a graphically cinematic rendering of something between art and life. “I’m talking to myself again, while my consciousness explodes. My mind is made up: There’s going to be trouble.”

A Short Commercial For Your Mind

Please Share This:

Share

%d bloggers like this: