photography

American Photography Awards 34

Work with Foreign Policy selected for this year's American Photography Awards 34. Images show the horrific toll the battle against has had on Iraq's youngest. The original piece written for Foreign Policy can be viewed in full here. Click here to view the rest of those selected for this year's award.

Ako's Ride - for Vanity Fair

"When Ako Abdulrahman, then 30, bought a used BMW E32 750i Security Vehicle, his intention was the opposite of the one BMW had envisioned. Nothing Ako does is safe or discreet. If he offers you one of his French cigarettes, he lunges forward with it. He drinks a cappuccino in three gulps. He listens to Kurdish rap music and likes it loud. His presence is one of urgent motion. Even his beard is shaped into an angular prominence that suggests direction."

Grab a copy of Vanity Fair's December issue and read Jeff Stern's incredible story of Ako, his BMW, and their Death Race-styled mission during the ISIS attack on Kirkuk in 2016.

Thanks to Rawand and Ari for all the help getting this one done.

Read the online version here.

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The Cost of Liberation - The Intercept

"This week, three years after Islamic State militants seized Mosul, Iraqi prime minister Haider al-Abadi entered the city to announce its liberation, declaring victory in the 9-month siege even as fighting continued in the last pockets of ISIS-controlled territory."

Read more here.

"With Mosul being declared recaptured this week, The Intercept could not have picked a better time to publish this stunning photo essay by Cengiz Yar. Yar has been covering the invasion since the beginning, and his closeness to the subject is apparent in the intimate access and broad scope of the work. The photos, some of which are difficult to look at, are a reminder of the bittersweet victories of war."

—Kate Bubacz, deputy photo director, BuzzFeed News

Instant Mosul: The Conflict Through 5 Photojournalists’ Instagram Feeds - lensculture

"During these past few weeks, we have noticed a glut of images and media produced by photojournalists working in Mosul and the surrounding area. Even as photographers are disseminated their work through traditional means like shooting for major news outlets (BBC, Reuters, the New York Times, Al Jazeera, and beyond), they were simultaneously using their personal social media accounts to provide frequent (even hour-by-hour) updates on the battle—as well as shots that portray the heartbreaking realities of living in a city besieged."

Read more here.

 
 

Mosul Emerges From Islamic State Siege - for The Wall Street Journal

Three years after Islamic State extremists seized Mosul, their defeat is at hand. At great cost to life and property, Iraqi forces have nearly completed their eight-month campaign to recover the ancient Iraqi city. But Mosul lies in ruins and rebuilding it and returning many of its tens of thousands of residents will likely take years and cost billions of dollars.

Read more here.

Iraqis Deploy Drones to Target ISIS in Mosul Battle - for The Wall Street Journal

"Iraqi forces are using small, off-the-shelf drones to target Islamic State in the crowded and twisting streets of Mosul’s Old City, where the militants are making a last stand.

Iraq’s counterterrorism forces on Tuesday said they pushed to within a few hundred yards of the al-Nuri Mosque, where Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi officially announced the creation of the Islamic State caliphate in 2014, and has been a symbol of the militants’ power."

Read more here.

From Tehran to Beirut: Shia militias aim to firm up Iran's arc of influence - for The Guardian

"The town of Ba’aj is deserted and broken. Its streets are blocked by overturned cars, its shops are shuttered and the iron gates of its ravaged homes groan in a scorching wind.

Amid the wreckage, though, are the signs of new arrivals – forces who less than a week earlier chased Islamic State (Isis) from one of its most important territories in northern Iraq."

Read more here.

How 6 Pro Photographers Are Using Instagram Stories - TIME

I was included in a TIME Lightbox piece about how photographers are using Instagram Stories.

"It allows me to put the battle for Mosul in front of someone riding the bus to work in Texas or rocking their kid to bed in Indonesia. Stories allows me to put this crisis in their hands. That's powerful. As journalists struggle with ways to inform people about what's happening in the world, it seems foolish not to use it. It's clearly effective."

Read the full piece here.

Awra Ali - for The Intercept

“Every day, there is more shrapnel,” Alia said, sitting on the linoleum floor of the hospital, stroking the tuft of brown hair on Awra’s head that is growing back after it was shaved to remove the first pieces of metal when she arrived at the hospital. Bits of shrapnel are still coming out of her head wounds, and larger pieces remain lodged in her legs.

read the full story here