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Vietnam

Eddie Adams' Iconic Saigon Shot, 50 Years Later (Video)

Detail of the iconic Saigon shot, Feb. 1, 1968
Detail of the iconic Saigon shot, Feb. 1, 1968
Eddie Adams/AP Photo
Worldcrunch

Even in a pre-internet era, the impact was almost immediate.

Eddie Adams' Feb. 1, 1968 photograph of Lt. Col. Nguyen Ngoc Loan executing a North Vietnamese prisoner hit the Associated Press wires, and would soon appear in newspapers in the United States and around the world. The graphic image stunned the public and politicians alike, quickly adding to the mounting opposition to the war in Vietnam. Some historians say it may have changed the course of the war itself.

Adams, who would win the Pulitzer Prize for the image, had mixed feelings about the work. For a seasoned AP war photographer, witnessing death and killing was part of daily life. You may be surprised to find out what he did right after photographing the execution. (Note: The audio featured below is from an interview before Adams' death, in 2004.)

In the 50 years since it was taken, the single frame has become an icon of photojournalism. And while it is readily recognizable, not only for photography buffs and for many who keep up with current events, we have found a way to retell its story. And see the image. Do you have 58 seconds?

To discover the stories behind the best photography, follow OneShot on Instagram , Facebook or Twitter.

OneShot — Execution Of Viet Cong Prisoner, 1968 (©Eddie Adams/AP Photo)

OneShot is a new digital format to tell the story of a single photograph in an immersive one-minute video.

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Ideas

Calmez-Vous, Americans: It's Quite OK To Call Us "The French"

A widely mocked tweet by the Associated Press tells its reporters to avoid dehumanizing labels such as "the poor" or "the French". But one French writer replies that the real dehumanizing threat is when open conversation becomes impossible.

Parisians sitting on a café terrasse.

Parisians sitting on a café terrasse.

Dirk Broddin on Flickr
Gaspard Koenig

-Essay-

PARIS — The largest U.S. news agency, the Associated Press (AP) tweeted a series of recommendations aimed at journalists: “We recommend avoiding general and often dehumanizing 'the' labels such as the poor, the mentally ill, the French, the disabled, the college-educated. Instead use, wording such as people with mental illnesses.”

The inclusion of “The French” in this list of groups likely to be offended has evoked well-deserved sarcasm. It finally gives me the opportunity to be part of a minority and to confirm at my own expense, while staying true to John Stuart Mill's conception of free speech: that offense is not a crime.

Offense should prompt quips, denial, mockery, and sometimes indifference. It engages conflict in the place where a civilized society accepts and cultivates it: in language.

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