Hi there,

Democracy Now is committed to bringing you the stories and perspectives you won't hear anywhere else, from the peace activists demanding an end to war to Indigenous leaders fighting to stop fossil fuel extraction and save the planet. Our independent reporting is only possible because we’re funded by you—not by the weapons manufacturers when we cover war or gun violence, not by the oil, gas, coal, or nuclear companies when we cover the climate crisis. Can you donate $10 today to keep us going strong? Every dollar makes a difference. Right now a generous donor will DOUBLE your donation, making it twice as valuable to Democracy Now! Please do your part today, and thank you so much.
-Amy Goodman

Non-commercial news needs your support.

We rely on contributions from you, our viewers and listeners to do our work. If you visit us daily or weekly or even just once a month, now is a great time to make your monthly contribution.

Please do your part today.

Donate

‘Restrepo’ Director Tim Hetherington and Photojournalist Chris Hondros Killed While Reporting on Libyan Conflict in Misurata

Web ExclusiveApril 20, 2011
Media Options
Related

Photojournalist and filmmaker Tim Hetherington, director and producer of the documentary film “Restrepo,” and photojournalist Chris Hondros were killed in the Libyan city of Misurata on Wednesday when a group of four photojournalists were attacked.

Photographer, Guy Martin, suffered severe injuries. A fourth photographer, Michael Christopher Brown, is reported to have shrapnel injuries.

Democracy Now! interviewed Hondros April 5, 2007, about the graphic photographs he took in the northwestern Iraqi city of Tal Afar in 2005 when U.S. troops opened fire on a family of eight approaching a checkpoint in a car. Both parents were killed while the six children in the backseat looked on. His photos were nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.

Click here to read the complete transcript of this interview. An excerpt is listed below.

AMY GOODMAN: Chris is a staff photographer for the international photo agency Getty Images. He’s just returned from his ninth stint in Iraq, which he chronicled at his blog, gettyimages.com, joining us in our firehouse studio.

Chris, you are well known for this remarkable series of photographs in Tal Afar. Can you explain what happened?

CHRIS HONDROS: Yes. It was a couple of years ago now. It was in January 2005, and I was embedded with US Army troops in Tal Afar in northern Iraq. I’d been sent there by the Army. I had wanted to go to Mosul, where there were some battles going on at the time, but I’d been sort of waylaid to go to Tal Afar, because you don’t always get the embeds that you want in Iraq. And I was with a group of soldiers on a routine evening patrol around dusk, about 6:00 or so, right around the time where the curfew was held in Tal Afar, and a car on the darkened streets sort of appeared in the distance and started coming down the boulevard toward the soldiers. As is well known, you know, the soldiers don’t like cars coming towards them. They fear suicide bombers and things. They weren’t sure what to do. They fired a few shots. The car kept coming, and so they shot up the car. And tragically, an Iraqi family was in the car, parents and six children, and the parents were killed instantly. And I documented that event.

AMY GOODMAN: And then the children that came out of this car.

CHRIS HONDROS: Well, you know, the children—one of the children—I mean, the children were, of course, terrified and covered in—blood had splattered in the car, and they were covered in blood. The soldiers realized the mistake immediately and rushed up, took the children out. They weren’t sure who was injured, who was not, and they sort of evaluated the children on the sidewalk, in front there. I photographed all that. And one of the children, it turned out, had a gunshot wound, as well, and they were all transported to the local hospital and dropped off there.

Related Story

Web ExclusiveMar 30, 2022New Book Documents Role of U.N. & EU in Humanitarian Crisis for African Refugees Held in Libyan Prisons
The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to democracynow.org. Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.

Non-commercial news needs your support

We rely on contributions from our viewers and listeners to do our work.
Please do your part today.
Make a donation
Top