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Domonoske writes: "The past several years have seen a flood of horrific photos from the war in Syria: starving children, wounded civilians, mourning crowds, devastated cities, the many dead. But this tiny moment in Aleppo has resonated in a new way."

A 5-year-old boy, identified in news reports as Omran Daqneesh, sits in an ambulance Wednesday after reportedly being pulled out of a building hit by an airstrike in Aleppo, Syria. (photo: Amhmoud Rasian/Anadolu/Getty)
A 5-year-old boy, identified in news reports as Omran Daqneesh, sits in an ambulance Wednesday after reportedly being pulled out of a building hit by an airstrike in Aleppo, Syria. (photo: Amhmoud Rasian/Anadolu/Getty)

A Wounded Child in Aleppo, Silent and Still, Shocks the World

By Camila Domonoske, NPR

18 August 16


urrounded by shouting, he's completely silent.

The child is small, alone, covered in blood and dust, dropped in the back of an ambulance with his feet dangling off the edge of a too-big chair.

He doesn't cry or speak. His face is stunned and dazed, but not surprised. He wipes his hand over his wounded face, looks at the blood, wipes it off on the chair.

And he stares.

The world is staring back.

The past several years have seen a flood of horrific photos from the war in Syria: starving children, wounded civilians, mourning crowds, devastated cities, the many dead.

But this tiny moment in Aleppo has resonated in a new way.

Last year, the photograph of Aylan Kurdi, the Syrian 3-year-old who drowned and washed ashore in Turkey, intensified Europe's conversations about the refugee crisis and moral responsibility. Now the image of the boy in the ambulance is bringing new attention to the ongoing agonies of the Syrian conflict.

The video was released by the Aleppo Media Center, an anti-government activist group in Syria, The Associated Press reports. It adds:

"A doctor in Aleppo on Thursday identified the boy as 5-year-old Omran Daqneesh. Osama Abu al-Ezz confirmed he was brought to the hospital known as 'M10' Wednesday night following an airstrike on the rebel-held neighborhood of Qaterji. ...

"Rescue workers and journalists arrived at Qaterji shortly after the strike and began pulling victims from the rubble.

" 'We were passing them from one balcony to the other,' said photojournalist Mahmoud Raslan, who took the iconic photo. He said he had passed along three lifeless bodies before receiving the wounded boy.

"A doctor at M10 later reported eight dead, among them five children."

Medical facilities in Syria are routinely hit by government forces. As a result, hospitals have been pushed underground and use code names, such as "M10."

Reporter Ben Taub wrote about those hospitals, and the doctors who stay in Syria to staff them, for The New Yorker. He spoke to NPR about the devastating scenes at these makeshift hospitals.

Without adequate facilities, supplies, staffing or basic infrastructure, doctors in Syria find themselves frequently unable to do much more than watch their patients die.

But the boy in the ambulance was lucky.

He had a head injury but no brain damage, and was treated at the hospital then released, al-Ezz, the doctor, told the AP.

The rest of his family reportedly was rescued, too — his mother, his father and his siblings, ages 1, 6 and 11. They all escaped major injury.

"We sent the younger children immediately to the ambulance, but the 11-year-old girl waited for her mother to be rescued. Her ankle was pinned beneath the rubble," Raslan, the photojournalist, told the AP.

Shortly after the family was rescued, their damaged apartment building collapsed, Raslan says.

The Syrian Civil Defense — the volunteer life-saving organization commonly known as the White Helmets — saved the family's life.

Bibars Halabi is the White Helmet volunteer who carried Omran to the ambulance.

"My heart breaks for Omran but people need to know this happens everyday," he told the advocacy group The Syrian Campaign.

"Every day we rescue children and families. Every day I meet traumatized parents for losing a child or even not being able to find the body under the rubble.

"Just this time it was caught on camera." your social media marketing partner


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We too were alarmed at the patterns we were, and still are, seeing. It is clear that the provocateurs are far more savvy, disciplined, and purposeful than anything we have ever experienced before.

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+8 # BlueMorpho 2016-08-18 13:35
0 # Navigatio di Brendani 2016-08-19 14:59
Knowing that "my god/sect is better than your god/sect " religious conflicts have killed an estimated 809 million beautiful people, whose bodies lined up head to toe would circle the 25,000 mile - long Equator 34.6 times, can their BE a god in heaven, my dear Blue Morpho Flutterby?

Richard Carlyon's book, "A Guide to the Gods," lists over 1200 gods and goddesses. Man created god, not the other way around, in my oh, so humble opinion!

On a much lighter note, "A Guide to the Gods" is a ginormously fun read, with the last of the book's 234 "A-List" gods, Azacca, being a hard drinking, lazy supernatural, quick to appear and disappear Haitian party animal, not to be trusted with a man's wife or girlfriend. I imagine more than a few unfaithful Haitian peasant women use ol' Azacca as an alibi...
+25 # indian weaver 2016-08-18 16:09
And this little boy is only one of 10,000s of such wounded children, not to mention the 1000s dead. And this photo is not even near the worst of the children tragedies. This child still has legs and arms. I have a photo of a little boy, maybe 10 years old, with both of his arms blown off, and much of his skin burned off, but alive in a hospital wrapped in bandages, and looking directly into the camera. If you see it, you'll never forget him - sentenced to a life in hell by Obama who sanctioned the bombing of boy's hospital room at the Doctors Without Borders Hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan. His photo should be hung around Obama's, Biden's, and every congress person's neck for the rest of their sorry lives. Is Obama or Biden going to care for this little boy who no longer has arms, and probably no living relatives? The little boy looks desperate and wants to die. How will he feed and dress himself, go pee pee? I've sent this photo to a few congress people as a sheet of 9 of the photos for them to cut up and give to their children, spouse and best friends to show them what they do to earn a living - send little children to hell, besides heaven. Obama needs to get a sheet of his photo to give it to his 2 daughters. So does dubya - to give copies of it to his 2 daughters. They sent this boy to hell and he's living there right now as I type. Among 10,000 others like him, worldwide, courtesy of Obama, Biden, dubya and dick. Makes homicide look downright desirable by comparison.
+10 # Radscal 2016-08-18 16:54
Whether or not this particular child was really injured in a "regime" bombing, my heart goes out to all the civilians, and especially the children being harmed and killed by our Global War OF Terror, and its offshoots.

I write "if," because as this article notes:

“The video was released by the Aleppo Media Center, an anti-government activist group in Syria,”

There are multiple pro-CIA, pro-Jihadist NGOs in Syria. They are ONLY in "rebel held" territory, where they travel freely, creating and disseminating propaganda.

One of the most well known is the "White Helmets." This article will give y'all a perspective on this alleged humanitarian organization (members of whom have been videotaped executing Syrians loyal to the government and carrying the ISIL flag).
+5 # Navigatio di Brendani 2016-08-19 04:37
Rad, you recall the hard-hitting photojournalism of the Vietnam War era, when we had thousands of media companies instead of a handful.

Here is a very poignant and powerful Anti-War music video - the Chad Mitchell Trio's superb interweaving of the original keening, heart-rending Irish war protest song, "Oh, Johnny, I Hardly Knew Ye," (probably written by a woman) and the later PRO war version it was twisted into - "When Johnny Comes Marching Home." Search:

Youtube Chad Mitchell Trio Johnny
+3 # Navigatio di Brendani 2016-08-19 04:57
Another great war protest music video, released recently by Leonard Cohen. Search:

Youtube Leonard Cohen Almost Like the Blues
+1 # Radscal 2016-08-20 01:01
WOW! I hadn't heard or seen that song before. Absolutely terrific.
+1 # Radscal 2016-08-19 14:58
Yes. It's very strange that the military allowed journalists to largely travel where they wished and film and interview whomever they chose, and then to broadcast that stuff.

Obviously, they slammed that door shut for all wars since then ("embedded" journalists? Sheesh!).

But in WW II, the military also carefully controlled the media.

So, I've long wondered why they permitted such liberties during the Vietnam War.

I'll check out the vids later. Thanks.
+2 # Navigatio di Brendani 2016-08-19 22:15
The 1960s and early 1970s were different in too many ways to count, Rad.
+1 # Radscal 2016-08-20 00:17
+1 # Radscal 2016-08-20 00:56
Great video that was created to go with that great song.

Do you know if that was recorded when John Denver was a member of the group?
+1 # Navigatio di Brendani 2016-08-20 03:21
Recorded when Chad Mitchell was still singing first tenor and they were doing their best work. John was good, but he was no Chad Mitchell. Here is another great, sad, passionate, old Irish war song they did that I sent to Queen Elizabeth as thanks for a great history lesson she gave me when we chatted in The Daily Beast a few years ago. I wrote a Godot article about that: "Learning of Early American Irish Slaves In a Conversation with Master Historian Queen Elizabeth."

She was headed to Balmoral Castle in Scotland where they have a yearly Scottish Fling gala, and "The Bonny Streets of Fivie -O" is perfect for a stately turn on the dance floor.

Youtube Chad Mitchell Bonny Streets

Roger McGuinn on guitar here and on "Johnny," btw.

P.S.- When she was at Balmoral a wickedly gossipy insider post about a British royal appeared in The Daily Beast, under the screen name "Gin Martini." I first thought it surely couldn't be Elizabeth, but then recalled that Balmoral is where the Windsors / Saxe - Coburg Gothas can relax and cut loose a few times a year. So I Googled, "What is Queen Elizabeth's favorite drink?" Gin Martini!

So I replied, "Dear Lizzie, is that YOU talking or the gin?" No reply, of course. One and only Gin Martini post. Tried to slip by this old historian again, like she tried to with earlier "EkR" (Elizabeth konigin Regina) screen name- Busted again, Old Girl! But hey - she was an ambulance driver and mechanic in World War Two, not a cryptographer.
+1 # Radscal 2016-08-20 11:42

Here's another Irish War Song, "The Saint Patrick Battalion:"

You may know about them from the "Mexican/Americ an War" of 1846-48.
0 # Navigatio di Brendani 2016-08-20 14:23
Will have to open link on home comp tomorrow. Stone age smart phone here. Thinking that St. Paddy's Battalion defected or were captured from Scott's army then fought for the Mexicans they empathized with - not sure, will look it up.

Hey - nuther great song back atcha, about Mexican civilians caught between American troops and Zapata's in 1917. My grandfather rode as a corporal with Black Jack Pershing, chasing but not catching Poncho Villa.

Youtube Warren Zevon Veracruz

Sends chill up my spine every time I hear it. Zevon twofer here - fun little pre- First Gulf War ditty:

Youtube Warren Zevon The Envoy

"Nuclear arms in the Middle East, Israel's attacking the Iraqis (took out nuke reactor) the Syrians are mad at the Lebanese, and Baghdad do whatever she please (Saddam our best buddy then) . Looks like another threat to world peace for The Envoy!" (who was Phillip Habib)
+1 # Radscal 2016-08-20 15:25
Yeah, the St. Paddy's were Irish immigrants who volunteered to fight the Mexican/America n war, but then switched sides when they realized who was the imperialistic aggressor.

The song describes them pretty well.
+1 # Radscal 2016-08-20 15:47
Cool songs! I didn't know Zevon was my home boy (both from Chicago).

That's an amazing tale from your grandfather. I'll see your one grandpa and raise you one.

Both of my grandfathers fought in the Spanish American War in the Philippines. They didn't know one another.

My German Grandfather actually fired the first US shot of the war (a gun from the battleship he was on. He actually kept the shell for the rest of his life).

Well, my middle brother noticed that our German grandfather was covered in tattoos from his time in the Navy.

But our Irish grandfather had not a one. So, Tommy asked him why that was and he said (in his thick Irish brogue):

"Well Tommy me lad, when your an Irishman, you don't want to have any distinguishing marks on your body."

Of course, Ireland was still a British colony when he was in the Merchant Marine and US Navy.
+1 # Navigatio di Brendani 2016-08-20 18:49
"Och, Rad me Lad, we Irish let others damage the outsides of their bodies, while we prefer to damage our insides! For as you know, if it wasn't for whiskey, the Irish would rule the world!"

If you haven't seen movie,"The Commitments, " you must, you must! Trust me - haven't lead you astray so far, eh?

Peace Out!
+7 # Capn Canard 2016-08-19 07:51
Then there is the Youtube channel by Syrian Girl Partisan.

I mostly agree with Syrian Girl. But waiting around the corner is Israel. The Zionists will stick it's big ugly nose into Syrian business. My guess is that the Zionists are currently deeply into the process of stealing Syria.
+2 # Radscal 2016-08-19 15:01
They've already used this "civil war" as the excuse to formally annex the long-occupied Golan Heights, and even went to the UN asking that this illegal land grab be internationally recognized.

And Israel is treating wounded "rebels" in their hospitals and then sending them back to murder Syrians.

They've also shot down Syrian jets and provided air support for "rebel" offensives.
+5 # Bryan 2016-08-18 17:27
'' “The video was released by the Aleppo Media Center, an anti-government activist group in Syria,”

Wouldnt give you 2 cents for NPR they are nothing but 90% jewish neocon central in their slants.

Maybe it was the Syrian gov that did this, maybe it wasn't,..hardly matters as everyone in this FUBAR has killed innocents.

What NPR will never show you is right here. I double dare anyone here to look at it:
+20 # Billy Bob 2016-08-18 21:33
Yes, I'm gonna make this about Killary.

When Hillary Clinton gets another chance to finish the job of killing thousands more children, just as innocent, precious, and beautiful as this poor little boy, her supporters will all get together for a resounding: "YOU GO GIRL!"

Too bad Americans have NO CHOICE (politically) but to just keep bombing little innocent children for as long as it takes to drain the Earth of blood, oil, breathable air, fertile crops, and drinkable water.
+8 # Oyster 2016-08-19 07:47
You Go, Billy Bob!
-12 # sdraymond 2016-08-18 22:07
Although much of what you say about America's complicity and involvement is true, this bombing was done by the Russian military. Do you only condemn America? It seems that most of you think that America is the only evil empire in the world.
+12 # Radscal 2016-08-18 22:30
1. How do you know who bombed this building?
(NO "western' journalists are in the "rebel held" territory.)

2. How do you know this child was the victim of a bombing?
(Read the article I linked above.)

3. Did you know that MSF has said they refused to give Russia the coordinates of its hospitals?

4. Did you know that one hospital allegedly bombed by Russia turned out to not be a hospital, and not having been bombed?

5. IF Russia did bomb a civilian structure and harm innocent people, that is horrible. If they did it on purpose, that is unconscionable.

What say we agree to demand that the US/NATO cut off the funding for these "rebels" and therefore end all the bombing by everyone?
+5 # ReconFire 2016-08-19 15:15
Quoting sdraymond:
Although much of what you say about America's complicity and involvement is true, this bombing was done by the Russian military. Do you only condemn America? It seems that most of you think that America is the only evil empire in the world.

We (USA), are the bullies of the world, our govt. says "jump" and most of the rest of the world asks how high, out of fear I might add.
+4 # lfeuille 2016-08-19 19:32
It has not been proven that it was done by Russia, but even if it is true, the war would have been over a long time ago and the bombs would have stopped if the US had not backed the rebels. Either way, it is our responsibility.
+17 # tigerlillie 2016-08-18 22:16
Whatever the source, whoever did the bombing, the image of this shell shocked, traumatized baby says it all.
+13 # Radscal 2016-08-18 22:34
As it is intended to do.

I often find myself wondering what's going on in the minds of photographers and video operators who document horrible events. This kid is plopped down in an ambulance, right next to a First Aid kit, and nobody tends to him, but at least two people document his placement.
+13 # jpstillwater 2016-08-19 00:04
I totally no longer believe any of the propaganda films published by the MSM. Didn't Americans wise up after Iraq, Libya, Honduras, Vietnam, Ukraine, Yemen, etc.? Apparently not. They'd rather spend their money on buying bombs than on fixing our infrastructure or bringing our jobs back from overseas or giving us solar power or educating our kids or...
+12 # lorenbliss 2016-08-19 00:38
The ultimate child-as-war-vi ctim photograph was made in 1937 by Hearst Photographer H.S. Wong. I saw it at age five in late 1945 when Life magazine ran it as part of a retrospective celebrating the end of the war. It moved me then in spirit-wrenchin g ways I still cannot describe, as it did again moments ago when I found it on the Internet:
+1 # Radscal 2016-08-20 15:29
Wow. Yeah, that one is moving.

For me, the iconic, terribly touching, photo has always been the "Napalm Girl" from our war against Vietnamese Independence.
+10 # LionMousePudding 2016-08-19 02:54
Oh my God.

That is a haunting photograph; a more haunting video.

Let Hillary look at this child and explain to him. Explain to the American children. Why we fight. For whom.

It does not matter who almost killed this child. She, as the next President of this powerful country, the next person who already before the election is planning the next war, should explain why she wants more children to look like this.

Will this photo or video get mainstream coverage?

Let us hope as much as we can that this child, in summing up the entire tragedy with his little face, can influence some hard to reach hearts.
+4 # Radscal 2016-08-19 15:05
This photo and video are ALL OVER the MSM.

The ten children killed the same day in Yemen by US-supplied Saudi bombs? Not so much.

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