Posted by: dougery | April 27, 2011

Chris Hondros and War

Let’s be honest, this blog is pretty frivolous. Largely inconsequential. A means for you and I to pass the time–me by recording my thoughts and you by hopefully getting a laugh or a raised eyebrow. I purposefully avoid certain topics, serious topics, stuff that angers the blood, stirs the pot, etc. What follows shouldn’t make you angry, or maybe it will, but that’s not the intention. I’ve given a lot of thought to including it at all. I’m still not sure this is a good idea.

What follows is a photograph by the late Pulitzer prize-nominated war photographer Chris Hondros. It is easily one of the most striking images you will ever see. It is also a great many other things as that 1,000 word cliche reminds us. I am stringing this along out of genuine dread and out of some misguided attempt to pack enough text on here so that the image doesn’t immediately jump out and strike you in the face.

One last warning. This is one of those things that you cannot ‘un-see.’

One of those things I wish did not exist.

But it does, and it offers up a grim portrayal of the realities of war. Be for or against the Iraq War, the war in Afghanistan, troop surges, troops pulling out, the toppling of dictators, the installation of others, the fight for democracy, the fight for capitalism, the fight for freedom, for censorship, for whatever it is you feel most strongly about. Just know that this is what happens. This is what always happens. I can think of no better single image to describe war. If I were to ever draft a dictionary I wouldn’t even include text, just this photo. It feels odd to thank anyone for this, but thank you Chris. We’re all better off–and worse, for what you’ve given us. (Read his story here, to find out how this remarkable image even came to exist in the first place but be warned, the photo appears there, too).

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Responses

  1. would it be too low brow for you to write about the historic happenings on the North Coast (and I don’t mean Winterfell)?

    P.S. that pictured burned into consciousness.THANKS!

    -esquire


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