Posts tagged with ‘vietnam’

In Vietnam, 17 bloggers and activists will stand trial [today]. This trial will be the largest of its kind in Vietnam—14 of the defendants will appear at once. They have been charged under Article 79 (“activities aimed at overthrowing the people’s government”) of the Criminal Procedure Code of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. The allegations include: attending workshops on digital security; writing and linking to blog posts that are critical of the Communism Vietnamese government; calling for peaceful protests and political pluralism; and association with the Vietnam Reform Party (Viet Tan). If convicted, the defendants could face sentences ranging from five years in prison to capital punishment. Three of the accused activists—Nguyen Xuan Kim, Thai Van Tu, and Le Sy—have fled the country and the Ministry of Public Security has issued a warrant for their arrest.

2012 was a year of crackdowns on free expression in Vietnam, including the introduction of new censorship laws. But just as important as the new regulations was the ongoing harassment, intimidation, and detainment of bloggers who had spoken out against the Communist regime. Dozens of social activists were arrested, some of whom received harsh prison sentences, and many of whom have been detained for over a year without trail. In the summer, the mother of imprisoned Vietnamese blogger Ta Phong Tan died after setting herself on fire to protest her daughter’s detention on charges spreading anti-state propaganda.
After Picasso, the $2.19 Million Dollar Camera
The AP and Atlantic Wire report that a camera belonging to TIME Magazine photographer David Douglas Duncan has sold for, well, millions. He took it with him to Vietnam during the US war there and later when he met Pablo Picasso and his family in the artist’s studio in France.

After Picasso, the $2.19 Million Dollar Camera

The AP and Atlantic Wire report that a camera belonging to TIME Magazine photographer David Douglas Duncan has sold for, well, millions. He took it with him to Vietnam during the US war there and later when he met Pablo Picasso and his family in the artist’s studio in France.

Qang Duc sat still as he was engulfed in flame
Pulitzer Prize winning photographer Malcolm Browne, who took the above picture of Qang Duc’s 1963 self-immolation in protest of the South Vietnamese government, died Monday.
Time’s Lightbox has a slide show of the events leading up to this moment and includes a Q&A with Browne about that day:

I had some hint that [the event] would be something spectacular, because I knew these monks were not bluffing. They were perfectly serious about doing something pretty violent. In another civilization it might have taken the form of a bomb or something like that.
The monks were very much aware of the result that an immolation was likely to have. So by the time I got to the pagoda where all of this was being organized, it was already underway—the monks and nuns were chanting a type of chant that’s very common at funerals and so forth. At a signal from the leader, they all started out into the street and headed toward the central part of Saigon on foot. When we reached there, the monks quickly formed a circle around a precise intersection of two main streets in Saigon. A car drove up. Two young monks got out of it. An older monk, leaning a little bit on one of the younger ones, also got out. He headed right for the center of the intersection. The two young monks brought up a plastic jerry can, which proved to be gasoline. As soon as he seated himself, they poured the liquid all over him. He got out a matchbook, lighted it, and dropped it in his lap and was immediately engulfed in flames. Everybody that witnessed this was horrified. It was every bit as bad as I could have expected.
I don’t know exactly when he died because you couldn’t tell from his features or voice or anything. He never yelled out in pain. His face seemed to remain fairly calm until it was so blackened by the flames that you couldn’t make it out anymore. Finally the monks decided he was dead and they brought up a coffin, an improvised wooden coffin.

Time Lightbox, Malcolm Browne: The Story Behind The Burning Monk.

Qang Duc sat still as he was engulfed in flame

Pulitzer Prize winning photographer Malcolm Browne, who took the above picture of Qang Duc’s 1963 self-immolation in protest of the South Vietnamese government, died Monday.

Time’s Lightbox has a slide show of the events leading up to this moment and includes a Q&A with Browne about that day:

I had some hint that [the event] would be something spectacular, because I knew these monks were not bluffing. They were perfectly serious about doing something pretty violent. In another civilization it might have taken the form of a bomb or something like that.

The monks were very much aware of the result that an immolation was likely to have. So by the time I got to the pagoda where all of this was being organized, it was already underway—the monks and nuns were chanting a type of chant that’s very common at funerals and so forth. At a signal from the leader, they all started out into the street and headed toward the central part of Saigon on foot. When we reached there, the monks quickly formed a circle around a precise intersection of two main streets in Saigon. A car drove up. Two young monks got out of it. An older monk, leaning a little bit on one of the younger ones, also got out. He headed right for the center of the intersection. The two young monks brought up a plastic jerry can, which proved to be gasoline. As soon as he seated himself, they poured the liquid all over him. He got out a matchbook, lighted it, and dropped it in his lap and was immediately engulfed in flames. Everybody that witnessed this was horrified. It was every bit as bad as I could have expected.

I don’t know exactly when he died because you couldn’t tell from his features or voice or anything. He never yelled out in pain. His face seemed to remain fairly calm until it was so blackened by the flames that you couldn’t make it out anymore. Finally the monks decided he was dead and they brought up a coffin, an improvised wooden coffin.

Time Lightbox, Malcolm Browne: The Story Behind The Burning Monk.

Horst Faas, War Photography

Earlier this month, Pulitzer prize winning conflict photographer Horst Faas passed away.

The German is best known for his Vietnam War photography with over a decade spent with the AP in Southeast Asia, and was responsible for publishing iconic work by his colleagues.

These include the “Napalm Girl" photograph by Nick Ut of then nine-year-old Phan Thi Kim Phuc running naked from a US bombing attack; and "Saigon Execution" by Eddie Adams of a prisoner being executed in the street by police chief Nguyen Ngoc Loan.

Faas’ first Pulitzer in 1965 came for his Vietnam War coverage. He won his second in 1972 for his conflict coverage in Bangladesh.

Faas died from complications due to an infection he contracted during a 2005 correspondents’ reunion in Hanoi that eventually paralyzed him from the waist down.

Images via Der Spiegel:

  • Top left: South Vietnamese troops and their US advisers wait for a Viet Cong attack. (1965)
  • Top right: South Vietnamese children stare at an American paratrooper holding an M79 grenade launcher. (1966>
  • Middle: Horst Faas
  • Bottom left: A South Vietnamese woman mourns over the remains of husband after he was found in a mass grave. (1969)
  • Bottom right: A man walks past the bodies of US and Vietnamese soldiers killed while fighting the Viet Cong at the Michelin rubber plantation (1965).

Select any to embiggen.