Phan Thi Kim Phuc with Daughter in arms
Phan Thi Kim Phuc receiving final skin treatment 50 years after war defining photo

Vietnam’s Napalm Girl receives final skin treatment 50 years after the war-defining photograph

Nine-year-old Kim Phuc Phan Ti’s picture became a defining illustration of the horrors of the Vietnam war – four decades later she has finally found some relief from her lasting wounds.

Kim Phuc Phan Thi, the subject of the infamous Napalm Girl photograph from the Vietnam war, has finished one of her final major treatments for the burns she sustained as a result of the bombing.

Just nine years old when the image was taken, 50 years later Ms. Phan Thi received her final skin treatment after decades of pain from the intense scarring the Napalm caused.

Nick-ut-photographer

Nick Ut (*1951)

In this June 8, 1972 file photo, crying children, including 9-year-old Kim Phuc, center, run down Route 1 near Trang Bang, Vietnam after an aerial napalm attack on suspected Viet Cong hiding places as South Vietnamese forces from the 25th Division walk behind them. A South Vietnamese plane accidentally dropped its flaming napalm on South Vietnamese troops and civilians. From left, the children are Phan Thanh Tam, younger brother of Kim Phuc, who lost an eye, Phan Thanh Phouc, youngest brother of Kim Phuc, Kim Phuc, and Kim's cousins Ho Van Bon, and Ho Thi Ting. (AP Photo/Nick Ut)

“The Terror of War,” also known as the “Napalm Girl,” is a Pulitzer Prize-winning photograph taken by photojournalist Nick Ut, a Vietnamese American photographer working for the Associated Press at that time. Nick joined AP in 1966 after his brother died in 1965 at 27. He worked in the darkroom and later became a combat photographer like his brother.

The photo “Napalm Girl” is a wake-up alarm for many Americans as the main subject where your eyes go is a little girl running to get away from more harm. 
This nine-year-old girl was Phan Thi Kim Phuc, who Ut initially brought to the hospital and then to an American care center, which saved her life.

Napalm, sometimes known as “liquid fire,” was first synthesized in 1943 at Harvard University under the supervision of chemistry professor Lous F. Fieser. Both allied and axis powers used a primitive version of Napalm during the first World War; true Napalm appeared first in combat until World War II.

We reviewed this photo today because our friend works at Associated Press.  This photo is now 51 years old, and the subject has a name, forgiveness, and mission. Phan Thi Kim Phúc and her family were residents of the village of Trảng Bàng in South Vietnam.  My friend at AP met with the photographer to review his work, and later met the subject, Phan Thi Kim Phuc.  We include videos to catch you up with the photo subject and the photographer.  This historical image still has a significant impact, and we ask all to pause over its drama in big and intimate ways.  Many news outlets struggled with its publication in 1972 due to nudity and the subject’s young age.  It was considered an essential image documenting the costs of war. The image of the napalm girl was horrifying then and is horrifying now. Let’s not forget the impact it had then so that we keep our focus on that same fight for non-violence as it unfolds.

 

Leica Q2 Monochrom Compact Digital Camera

Leica Q2 Monochrom Compact Digital Camera

The photo we are looking at was taken with a Leica M2 on Kodak 400 tri x film, as only 400, and 200 versions were available in Vietnam.  The camera still exists and is stored in a museum in Washington, DC.

 

On June 8, 1972, South Vietnamese planes dropped a napalm bomb on Trảng Bàng, which had been attacked and occupied by North Vietnamese forces. Kim Phúc joined a group of civilians and South Vietnamese soldiers who were fleeing from the Caodai Temple to the safety of South Vietnamese-held positions. The Republic of Vietnam Air Force pilot mistook the group for enemy soldiers and diverted to attack. The bombing killed two of Kim Phúc’s cousins and two other villagers. Kim Phúc received third-degree burns after her clothing was burned by the fire.

 

“I wanted to stop this war; I hated war. My brother told me I hope one day you have a picture to stop the war” – Nick UT

On June 8, 1972, Nick Ut took just a picture like that. The picture that stopped the war. The photograph is said to be one of the most memorable photographs of the 20th century.

Check out Nick Ut’s photos here: https://www.instagram.com/utnicky/

A photograph of Phan Thi Kim Phuc as a nine-year-old girl enduring a napalm attack became a defining image of the Vietnam War. Healing has been a decades-long process. Now living in Canada, Kim Phuc shares her Brief But Spectacular take on pain and forgiveness.
Phan Thi Kim high res pictures

 

Kim Phuc Phan Thi, the subject of the infamous Napalm Girl photograph from the Vietnam war, has finished one of her final major treatments for the burns she sustained as a result of the bombing.

Just nine years old when the image was taken, 50 years later Ms. Phan Thi received her final skin treatment after decades of pain from the intense scarring the Napalm caused.

The photograph, taken on June 8, 1972, won a Pulitzer Prize for Associated Press photographer Nick Ut and became a defining image of the war.

The Gift of One Picture: Nick, Kim and the Napalm Girl

This minidocumentary traces the origins of one of the most famous photographs of the 20th century, Nick Ut’s “Burning Girl,” taken on June 8, 1972, during the Vietnam War. Recent interviews with Nick Ut and Kim Phuc touch on the friendship that developed between a wounded child and her photographer. As Nick Ut tells Kim “You had a picture and we were there.”