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July 11, 2013

The Shooting Death of Ahmed Samir Assem

Ahmed Assem shot

Mr Assem’s brother, Eslam, 29, said the footage’s last seconds showed a soldier shooting demonstrators from a roof. The soldier then turned his gun towards Mr Assem and the film suddenly went dead, he added.

– from: Ahmed Assem: the Egyptian photographer who chronicled his own death – Telegraph

Can you recall a more tragic but telling task of pattern recognition? …As well as a moment and a scene screaming out for an international response to the endangerment of journalists? I’m sure there will be a raft of artful and stylish conflict images to compete with, but how fitting a message if this frame won the coming year’s Picture of the Year or World Press award.

(screen grab via Telegraph/YouTube)

  • Mona

    The grainy quality gives the impression it is a video game; one can almost dismiss it as generic when it is exactly the opposite of all that. Amazing footage. Thank you Michael!

  • Mona

    The grainy quality gives the impression it is a video game; one can almost dismiss it as generic when it is exactly the opposite of all that. Amazing footage. Thank you Michael!

  • bks3bks

    If you lean your head back and squint it looks a lot like Lynne Cheney.

    –bks

  • bks3bks

    If you lean your head back and squint it looks a lot like Lynne Cheney.

    –bks

  • black_dog_barking

    There’s a scene in Saving Private Ryan that tells a story of dueling snipers using visuals shot through a rifle’s telescopic sight that ends with a shot much like this one.

    In order to appreciate this image you must know the context from which it came. But even without that critical information there is still a visually interesting balance of line, shape, and color, plus a hint that the matter just out of focus might be worthy of further attention. The combination of interesting composition coupled with life-and-death context creates a very powerful picture.

  • black_dog_barking

    There’s a scene in Saving Private Ryan that tells a story of dueling snipers using visuals shot through a rifle’s telescopic sight that ends with a shot much like this one.

    In order to appreciate this image you must know the context from which it came. But even without that critical information there is still a visually interesting balance of line, shape, and color, plus a hint that the matter just out of focus might be worthy of further attention. The combination of interesting composition coupled with life-and-death context creates a very powerful picture.

  • Colin Nicholls

    When will people learn not to point gun-shaped objects at other folks with guns? Especially in times of high stress? The shooter almost certainly thought he was picking off someone who was trying to kill him…

    • Scarabus

      Do you mean that literally and not ironically? Are you suggesting that photojournalists with videocameras or telephoto lenses should cover combat only if they’re suicidal? That using a video camera is “asking for it”?

  • Colin Nicholls

    When will people learn not to point gun-shaped objects at other folks with guns? Especially in times of high stress? The shooter almost certainly thought he was picking off someone who was trying to kill him…

    • Scarabus

      Do you mean that literally and not ironically? Are you suggesting that photojournalists with videocameras or telephoto lenses should cover combat only if they’re suicidal? That using a video camera is “asking for it”?

  • Scarabus

    The worst part is that the wounding and killing of photojournalists hasn’t been due just to mistaking cameras for weapons or to “collateral damage.” Journalists have been deliberately targeted.

    The Apache helicopter murder of the Reuters journalist and his assistant? Probably not deliberate targeting, just cruel sociopathy and casual disregard for human life. Watch the video and judge for yourself. http://www.collateralmurder.com/

    Remember the IDF’s deliberate targeting of journalists during their 2012 invasion of Palestine? They admitted it. http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2012/11/20/israeli-airstrikes-kill-palestinian-journalists/1718177/

    Remember the death of Tareq Ayoub in 2003? Bare facts: Al Jazeera provides U.S. exact coordinates of their location in Baghdad so as to prevent accidental targeting. Those precise coordinates are used to target them with a missile. (Watch the documentary Control Room. It can open one’s heart; open one’s eyes; and then break one’s heart.) http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/control-room/

    If this is what the U.S. and its allies do, then we have to assume others are doing the same. Think of the implications, not just for photo/video journalists, but for all of us who depend on their work in understanding what’s happening and deciding how we might exercise responsible citizenship.

  • Scarabus

    The worst part is that the wounding and killing of photojournalists hasn’t been due just to mistaking cameras for weapons or to “collateral damage.” Journalists have been deliberately targeted.

    The Apache helicopter murder of the Reuters journalist and his assistant? Probably not deliberate targeting, just cruel sociopathy and casual disregard for human life. Watch the video and judge for yourself. http://www.collateralmurder.com/

    Remember the IDF’s deliberate targeting of journalists during their 2012 invasion of Palestine? They admitted it. http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2012/11/20/israeli-airstrikes-kill-palestinian-journalists/1718177/

    Remember the death of Tareq Ayoub in 2003? Bare facts: Al Jazeera provides U.S. exact coordinates of their location in Baghdad so as to prevent accidental targeting. Those precise coordinates are used to target them with a missile. (Watch the documentary Control Room. It can open one’s heart; open one’s eyes; and then break one’s heart.) http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/control-room/

    If this is what the U.S. and its allies do, then we have to assume others are doing the same. Think of the implications, not just for photo/video journalists, but for all of us who depend on their work in understanding what’s happening and deciding how we might exercise responsible citizenship.

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