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RIP Joe Rosenthal

Joe Rosenthal, the photographer who took the iconic photo of US Marines raising the American flag over Iwo Jima during a bloody battle with the Japanese, has died at the age of 94.

iwo jima.jpg

Three of the six Marines in the photo did not survive the battle. Another, Ira Hayes, had a tragic postwar life commemorated in Johnny Cash’s great song.

There is no evidence that the photo was staged, as some have claimed. The Marines in the photo were replacing a smaller flag that had been planted earlier.

The photo is the basis for a memorial to Marines, across the river from Washington.

IwoJimaMemorial.jpg

Update: Harold Evans at Comment is Free has some thoughts about the significance of Joe Rosenthal’s photo. (Hat tip: Tom.)

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