Tuesday, March 23, 2010
1972, South Vietnam: the Victims Of War
The iconic photo taken in Trang Bang by AP photographer Nick Ut shows her at about age nine running naked on the street after being severely burned on her back by a South Vietnamese napalm attack.
Contrary to popular myth, the US Air Force were not involved in the attack, and only two US troops were within 60 mi (97 km) of the scene, neither of whom had any say in the bombings.
The image of Phúc running naked amidst the chaos became one of the most haunting images of the Vietnam War. In an interview many years later, she recalled she was yelling "Nong qua, nong qua" ("too hot, too hot") in the picture.
After snapping the photograph, Út took Kim Phúc and the other injured children to a hospital in Saigon, where it was determined her burns were so severe that she probably would not survive. After a 14-month hospital stay and 17 surgical procedures, however, she was able to return home. Út continued to visit her until he was evacuated during the fall of Saigon, three years later.