2.19.2008

IED Blast

(a note from me: My newspaper requested I take the photo that was here down, so I have taken it down.)

Our first night out on a patrol was suppose to be a night of checking up on check points manned by the Sons of Iraq. Not long after we rolled out of Combat Outpost War Eagle there was a call over the radio that a VBED exploded down the street. So the paratroopers in their MRAPs tore down the street to the explosion. When we got there flames were shooting from the remnants of a van with debris covering the street. It took a few minutes for the paratroopers to realize that their was a body inside the van and half a body lying 10 feet from the van. Photographing the scene was nearly impossible since there was no lights except for flashlights quickly passing over the scene.

Seeing the body lying there in the gutter never felt real. Like it was just a movie set and the man was going to lift his legs out of a hole after the scene was filmed and go over to the craft services table for a cup of coffee and a muffin. But it wasn't. After the fact I'm more disturbed by the picture than the actual scene I laid my eyes on.

Later we found out the two were killed when an IED they were transporting went off in their vehicle, after members of the Sons of Iraq fired shots at them for failing to slow down for a check point.
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Here are a couple of pics from the event that doesn't show the bodies.

PAINTING | Andrew Craft

PAINTING | Andrew Craft

4 comments:

Kevin Liles said...

Thank you so much for sharing, Andrew. Though I've never been in this kind of situation, I understand what you're talking about. I've shot things for the paper where I didn't feel like I was there. It's like being behind the camera shielded me from what was really going on. Stay safe over there and keep shooting brother.

Aperture Smaperture said...

What the 'F' Andrew? I guess I didn't expect you guys to ever be in that situation. I guess on paper that sounds stupid, since you and Kev are in a war zone and all. Crazy how Fay Pub has been sending people for years now and this finally happens. Keep posting so I don't worry (you know I'm a worrier).

aNaY said...

Wow, Andrew... please take care of yourself and don't forget that behind the camera, there is a dangerous reality. Incredible pictures and incredible situation...

A big hug!

AIRBORNE POPPA said...

War is Hell! Somebody famous said that. Unfortunately it is also ugly. This is to say thanks to Andrew. Your post and photos of the IED alerted me to an incident near to where my son is stationed. I asked and received a prompt reply. War tares families apart but it also brings people together. Andrew Craft, you bring people together. Thanks to you again for reaching out to me and my family. You are a great photographer and one hell of a good person.