Shooting War (2000) Movie Script

Other wars had been photographed.
World War II was covered
from start to finish
in every service, in every theatre.
For the first time,
civilians knew something
of how their sons, husbands
and brothers lived and died
in this vast crucible.
The images of this war
burned our eyes and spirits
and welded us together.
I loved it because it was dangerous.
I'm a fraidy-cat,
but if there was a job to do, I did it.
No matter how horrible the action was
that you were covering,
when you looked through,
that glass was your filter.
I got carried away one time
and got out in front of the gun,
shooting the gun firing.
That was a big mistake.
The muzzle blast knocked me 40 feet,
ass over teakettle.
We hit an intersection
where we were shot at.
The bullets whizzed by
into the cab of the truck.
When you're baling out of that aeroplane,
on the way down, you say, "Oh, no."
But shells, you can't say anything.
It comes and you wanna yell,
"Stop. I'm here."
Those are men who took the pictures
by which we remember World War II.
Some of their images are immortal.
Many have been hidden
in the archives for decades.
Whether their pictures
are famous or not,
what you are about to see is unique:
War stories backed by the irrefutable
evidence of the films they made.
In their hands, the camera became
a weapon more potent than the rifle,
a weapon whose impact resonates
even more powerfully now,
as memory is transformed into history.
In 1941, we were as unprepared
to photograph war as to wage it.
When John Ford made his film
on Pearl Harbor,
the Japanese attack was recreated,
intercut with old newsreel footage
and a few feet of the real thing.
Men, man your battle stations.
God bless you.
Hollywood cameraman Gregg Toland
re-staged these scenes
months after Pearl Harbor.
The actors are obviously amateurs,
but they are real sailors.
The planes were the contribution
of 20th Century Fox special effects.
In this out-take, you can see the wires
supporting the model Zero.
Ford organised his photographic branch
before the war, as part of the OSS.
Toland's crew set fire to crashed planes,
adding drama to his footage,
but his feature-length parable
about American unpreparedness
was judged unreleasable.
Ford now took a more active hand,
cutting December 7th to 34 minutes.
He retained much of the miniature
footage, also made at Fox.
This material, never before seen,
was shot in colour,
though the film was released
in black and white.
This is Hollywood's version
of Pearl Harbor's battleship row
and the Ford-Toland version
of the attack on it.
There was authentic footage
of the Nevada trying to escape,
but Ford preferred this reconstruction.
It matched the rest
of his fake footage better.
His goal was not strict authenticity.
He was out to stir the nation.
There was enough reality to win an
Academy Award for best short subject.
As Toland and Ford worked
on their film in spring 1942,
America mounted its first
aggressive response to Pearl Harbor:
A navy task force
under Admiral "Bull" Halsey.
It carried James Doolittle's flyers
and 16 B-25s aboard the Hornet.
Hal Kempe was
a photographer's mate on the ship.
I've heard many stories. Some say
we slipped out under cover of darkness.
We went under
the Golden Gate Bridge at noon.
We had the planes
lined up on the flight deck.
It looked like it was a ferry trip.
After we were at sea
for about two or three days,
they re-spotted the flight deck.
They took each B-25,
with tricycle landing gear,
and placed them with their tails
extending out over the edge.
They put one on each
port and starboard side
until the lead plane had
sufficient run for his take-off.
That was one third
the normal take-off distance.
The raiders were spotted
by Japanese picket boats.
They were sunk but might
have radioed a warning.
There was no choice
but to launch the attack.
So they said, "Man your planes.
We're gonna launch."
So we were launching
eight hours too soon.
Doolittle was first.
He went and the rest
of the crews were wondering,
"Can it be done?"
The raiders, volunteers, had practised
short-run take-offs on land,
a few from a carrier deck,
but never in bad weather.
Yet all were safely launched
for their 30 seconds over Tokyo.
Halsey's concern: The early launch
made it impossible
to make safe landings in China.
Yet all but three flyers survived the raid.
It did little damage,
except to enemy morale.
They carried four 500lb bombs each.
That's not very much,
when you really look at it,
but enough to put the fear
of God into them for a while.
The Doolittle raid provoked
a Japanese counter-attack
aimed at destroying the US Pacific fleet.
But we had broken their code and
knew they would attack Midway Island.
This evened the odds for the carriers
as they approached
the war's first great naval battle.
Midway was a pair of tiny coral atolls
vital to the defence of Hawaii.
This time, John Ford
was present with a film crew.
Ford himself operated a camera and
was wounded getting these pictures.
He would win another Oscar
for the film he fashioned.
The crucial battle was at sea between
ships that never saw one another.
They didn't know exactly
where the Japanese fleet was,
but the torpedo-squadron skipper had
an idea it was in a certain direction.
He went off there.
He ran into the whole bunch of 'em.
And 15 or 16 torpedo planes went down.
These men of torpedo squadron eight
found the Japanese carriers.
They scored no hits,
but they distracted enemy gunners,
allowing our dive bombers
to sink four carriers.
Only one man, George Gay,
on the right, survived.
One of Ford's crew shot these pictures.
The director made them into a short
memorial film for the next of kin.
Midway shifted the balance
of naval power in the Pacific.
It cost the Japanese
almost half their carriers.
Still, their wounded navy
continued to pose a deadly threat.
October, 1942. The Hornet steams
toward the battle of Santa Cruz
near Guadalcanal.
With the Enterprise, she was soon
fighting off assaults from the air.
How close the combat often was
is demonstrated by this sequence,
shot from the Enterprise.
A near miss shakes the Enterprise.
An enemy shadow is cast
on the flight deck as the ship fights on.
The camera catches the wild swing of
the huge ship as it takes evasive action.
But still the bombs rained down.
The camera survived this hit,
but not the cameraman.
The Hornet did not survive either.
We were listing to the starboard.
Real heavy list.
I went to the fantail
to help with the wounded,
where I stayed until
we finally abandoned ship.
I swam out about 45 degrees this way.
Got out so far
and here come the destroyers.
I figured, "This is gonna be
a piece of cake. Pick us up real quick."
Then they backed down and took off.
The destroyer starts circling
around the ship and firing.
"What are they firing at?"
We looked in the sky.
Coming in was a V formation
of twin-engine bombers.
You could see the five-inch
anti-aircraft bursts up there.
They came in, went right overhead,
and one hit the fantail back here
and the rest was in a pattern
round the stern of the ship.
It continued on and never came back.
I got picked up right after that
by the 411 Anderson.
That final bombing run
was a coup de grce.
The Hornet's short,
brave life was ended
when American destroyers sank her.
Our ship had been in commission
for one year and six days.
But the carrier war
in the Pacific never ceased.
We didn't have motors
but you had to hand-crank.
When we did flight-deck operations,
we did not hand-crank at three turns
per second on the small crank.
We used the big crank
and would start going up to high speed
because we wanted
slow motion of the crash.
The pilot coming in for landing.
If you ever see the photographer
start that big crank,
look out, you bought the farm.
The footage taken on the flight decks
forms an eerie ballet of destruction
and of unlikely survival.
By late 1942, we were officially
training combat cameramen.
Standard army issue
was the 35mm Eyemo for movies
and the 4 x 5 Speed Graphic for stills.
Many cameramen had been
photographers in civilian life.
Hal Roach's Culver City studio was
a major production and training centre.
Naturally, the students took pictures
of themselves taking pictures.
Eventually, about 1500 men,
not a lot for a war this huge,
would become motion-picture
combat cameramen.
Many served in the air force.
On bombing raids over Europe,
they worked as bomb spotters,
recording damage
for intelligence analysts.
The oil fields at Ploieti in Romania
were vital to the Germans
and among the most
bombed targets of the war.
On August 1 st 1943,
these B-24s, based in Libya,
mounted the first major attack on them
at a daring 500 feet.
Then, as later, results were poor.
Ploieti was never knocked out.
Doug Morrell flew
higher-altitude missions over Ploieti.
This mission can be ten hours long,
but the combat part's only ten minutes.
Ten minutes is a long time.
Try holding your breath.
The Eyemo had a hand-crank wind on it.
When the most important
thing happened,
you're winding that thing,
trying to get it going.
I had to reload up at 20,000 feet.
Your fingers get a little cold.
When you come into the target,
they put up so much flak
that the enemy fighters
won't come in, they'll get hit.
Bomb spotting
is when the bombs release,
then you follow 'em
and pick up their hits.
When you get those hits,
intelligence can use those.
We were bombing Ploieti
and flak hit us.
We had to drop out of formation.
Then six ME-109s jumped us
when we got out of formation.
We were all by ourselves.
They set us on fire.
I opened up the bomb-bay door
to jump out, instead of out the back end.
There's this fire coming.
I raced over, grabbed
one of those little fire extinguishers.
I said, "I'd better leave!"
I went out the back end
and just as I left, it blew.
We average about five out.
When I baled out, I was the last one out.
The other five got killed in there.
Another cameraman who survived
the air war was Dan McGovern.
You were so busy,
you weren't thinking about the battle.
You were thinking about
helping others and shooting.
You couldn't become a spectator.
You had to shoot.
There's ten crew members
on a bomber.
You're the 11th man.
We had to prove ourselves.
As a matter of fact
- this is a true story, so help me God -
I photographed my own crash-landing.
The two engines on the right side: Out.
The third engine on the left side: Out.
One engine.
So I cut to the right, cut to the left,
look over the top.
The aeroplane's coming in
for a crash-landing.
You don't think about it.
You're so excited. You're not scared.
But you're scared after
when you come back. You're shaking.
We dropped two million tons of bombs
but never matched results promised
by air-power advocates.
This war would be won on the ground,
as Norman Hatch learned when
he made the Tarawa landing in 1943.
I was riding with Jim Crowe,
a battalion commander.
He wasn't happy having me there.
As he told me, he didn't want
any Hollywood marines.
I had to testify that I was
a regular marine, a shot expert,
that I could do something with a rifle.
He said, "All right,
but don't get in my way."
I was sitting alongside him
shooting what was going on.
He observed that his amtracs,
the first three waves,
were not maintaining their course.
There was a.50 calibre buried
in the sand, shooting at them
and they kept edging over to the right.
Crowe could see his front disappearing
because of this.
He told the coxswain to put the boat in.
We ran up on the reef,
the ramp wouldn't go down,
so we had to go up over the side,
which was difficult with so much gear.
We were exhausted
because you can't walk through water
without having a lot of resistance.
And loaded down with gear,
it just drained you.
It took us a couple of minutes
on the beach to get oriented.
Hatch was pinned down
with the invaders.
There was nothing to do but shoot:
Combat footage
with a previously unknown ferocity.
The Japanese emplacements
were fantastic.
They'd built a concrete bunker
and covered it with sand and logs,
and covered that with sand.
They were pretty impregnable.
The Pacific war
favoured the cameramen.
Spaces were confined,
the action within them tightly focused.
The brutal reality of war revealed itself
here as it rarely did elsewhere.
Hatch caught the marines and their
enemy in combat in the same shot.
That was luck. Somebody said,
"Here they come."
I turned and there it was,
and I just kept on shooting.
Had the Japanese mounted
a coordinated counter-attack,
they might have driven the marines
back into the sea.
But the fighting remained
as Hatch's film showed it:
Ferocious, yet disorganised.
Most of the Japanese
fought to the death.
The marines took only 17 prisoners.
The seas continued
to run against reinforcements.
Among them was
another cameraman, John Ercole.
We didn't even know
what was going on.
We were going nowhere. The propeller
and the tide didn't come together.
I was shooting whatever I could,
people in my boat and things like that.
19 hours later,
we finally made a landing.
What Ercole found to shoot
was mostly the dead and wounded.
Their evacuation was poorly handled.
Hatch credits a movie actor
with getting things organised.
Eddie Albert was there.
He was a navy JG at the time.
He was a boat director,
and he discovered early on
that there wasn't much coordination
on getting wounded out.
He stayed on the beach
during the worst part of the fighting
and directed boats bringing supplies in
to carry wounded back to the ships.
As the battle moved inland, the futility
of the naval bombardment was obvious.
Their pounding didn't do much good.
They used armour-piercing shells
and there was no armour.
They were hitting sand
and skittering all over the island.
You'd see these 16-inch shells.
Nothing had ever happened with them.
What grabbed me and took hold of me
was the bodies, the dead bodies,
God knows how many marines,
face down, floating in shallow water.
That was the first time
that I had really seen dead bodies.
When you see these bodies floating
in the water, it grabs you.
And they all seemed to look like
a buddy of mine, Norman Hatch.
This was a piece of ground that wasn't
as big as Central Park in New York,
and in the course of that 72 hours,
6,000 people died.
5,000 of those were Japanese,
1,000 were marines,
and another 2,000 were wounded.
Passing a disabled tank,
Hatch heard this kitten's cry.
He thought it might be a wounded
enemy. It was just another war victim.
He thought he might make a pet of it,
but the kitten scampered away,
never to be seen again.
The quality of his film
earned Hatch a trip home,
where this footage of him was made
for an army-navy short subject.
We drove down Market Street
and every major theatre had my name
on it as taking the Tarawa film.
They were running it.
That's the best combat film
I've ever seen.
- And from an army man to a marine!
- It was just luck.
A movie cameraman,
a stills man... and a driver.
That's how the Signal Corps organised
its combat photographers in Europe.
The cameras we were using
were Eyemo,
called a bomb-spotter camera.
It had a crank on the side you wound up.
They only had one two-inch lens.
If you can believe
the running you have to do
to get your long shot, medium shot
and close-up with a two-inch lens.
It was really criminal
that they sent us there with that stuff.
Yet remarkable things
could be done with that equipment.
John Huston, one of several directors
who followed Ford to war,
used it to make what James Agee
thought the best war documentary.
Huston would write and speak
this strikingly ironic narration.
Patron saint: Peter.
Point of interest: St Peters, 1438.
Note interesting treatment of chancel.
Huston found real war more difficult
to direct than the Hollywood kind.
From October 1943
until the middle of December,
San Pietro was the scene of some of the
bitterest fighting on our Fifth Army front.
The Italian campaign had entered
its second phase,
to push forward again after
a static period brought on by heavy rain.
Huston came over
and he had a mission.
To make a coherent narrative
of one small battle
that would represent the entire war.
He realised that you have no control.
You shoot what you can get.
You can fire three rounds then drop.
But you can't get ten feet of film
in the same way.
If you had control,
you can do a lot with an Eyemo.
They gave him two battalions,
out of the 36 divisions, who were in rest,
and said, "Here it is,"
and he staged that whole thing.
He used film that we had shot,
actual battle film,
and he intercut it with what he had.
His stuff was much better than ours.
Ed Montagne has a veteran's
tolerance of Huston's tricks.
He used picturesque munitions,
he slammed the camera
to simulate explosions,
he even posed American Gls
as dead Germans.
But he scared the poor 36th.
That was a nervous outfit.
He'd have them going up a hill,
he'd take a grenade and throw it down,
and yell, "Grenade!" and they'd dive.
Some of the stuff was great.
I admire him for what he did.
But I resented the fact
that I would get critiques from New York.
"Major Huston's men were able
to do this. Why can't yours?"
I had the same people.
Didn't speak very well of me, did it?
Some of Huston's most moving footage
was of picking up the pieces,
of life reasserting itself
in the little town of San Pietro.
The people prayed to their patron saint
to intercede with God
on behalf of those
who came to liberate them
and passed on to the north
with the passing battle.
By 1944, the combat photographers
were everywhere,
even the China-Burma-lndia theatre.
To most Americans, that was
the war's most obscure corner.
Hidden behind high mountains
and deep jungles,
it was both a political
and logistical nightmare.
One route was called the "aluminium
trail" after all the planes downed flying it.
When Stilwell and Merrill
met to plan a mission
against the key
Japanese airfield at Myitkyina,
photographer Dave Quaid was there.
When General Stilwell flew off,
I went up to Merrill
and I said, "Hey, General.
"Do you mind if I join you guys?"
He said, "Come on along."
Technically, Quaid was AWOL
when he joined Operation Galahad.
He had no idea
what he was getting into.
So now we're on this trail that's basically
impassable. We had to cut steps.
Even the mules that can handle
any terrain could not handle this trail.
We ourselves carried
so much equipment,
five days K ration
and ammunition and rifles.
I carried a 13lb camera
and 2400 foot of film.
It got so rugged
that the mules could not make it.
Finally, they had to take the loads
and the saddles off the mules.
They would get a GI,
and a bunch of guys
would lift this 96-pound saddle
and put it on his back
and then he would
have to climb the steps.
When we got to a more level area,
we would load up the mules again.
Quaid tired of repeating
front and back angles.
He found a precarious perch
to get this side shot.
The drop is 300 feet. I was young then,
and I jumped down and made the shot.
On the way, Merrill's Marauders
twice encountered Japanese patrols.
Here you can see an enemy bullet
cutting through the brush.
Quaid stepped into the open
to get this shot of a fallen foe
and the American who killed him.
Probably the dumbest shot
I've ever made.
The Japanese were so stunned,
they didn't fire.
They didn't believe their eyes.
This wilderness trek took six days.
The method of handling malaria
was the simplest thing in the world.
It was called walking it out of you.
All our walking wounded
from the two battles
we had fought coming
over the mountains were still with us.
The weary Marauders
still took the airfield by surprise,
but the Japanese continued
to hold the nearby town.
I became fascinated
with the 88th Fighter Squadron.
They had death's heads
on their P-40F airplanes.
They were only a mile and half
from the Japanese bunkers.
They could make one turn
and come down on a bunker.
They were great support
for the American and Chinese
surrounding Myitkyina.
I was always interested in unique ways
of looking at things.
I thought it would be great
to put my camera
into the P-40 on a dive-bombing run.
I see them up there.
They make their turn and down they go.
I see him right on the back
of the captain all the way down.
The captain pulls out
after he released his bomb,
and this guy is still
following the bomb down.
And there's this terrific blast and I see
him trying to fly through the blast.
He can't get any altitude, but
he crash-lands at the end of the strip.
When the leader landed,
Quaid thought a retreat was in order.
He was, after all,
responsible for wrecking the plane.
He comes up to me and he says,
"Quaid, get out of here!"
He said, "Four more
and you're a Japanese ace!"
I think it was one of the funniest lines
of World War II.
He said, "Dave, don't take it to heart.
"We really wanna get P-51 s."
June, 1944.
The marines land in the Marianas,
within bomber range
of the Japanese home islands.
The late Richard Brooks
collected the exposed footage.
When the landing boats came in,
the cameramen came in first,
so they could photograph the marines
coming in to make the invasion.
Like Huston, Brooks would edit,
write and narrate this footage
into a great war documentary.
He would become an Oscar-winning
Hollywood writer-director after the war.
The Japs bring down
another one of our planes.
A sniper is burned out.
A Jap makes a run for it.
Lieutenant General Holland Smith,
commanding the assault forces.
He was known to his men
as Howlin' Mad Smith.
Brooks was working up the nerve
to ask him a question.
I made sure to get some shots
of General Smith
up against the skyline
and against the sea.
Walking back to his jeep, I said,
"May I ask you a question?"
He said, "Go ahead." I was a corporal.
I said, "Is there any way, General,
that our combat cameramen
can carry side arms?"
He said, "What do you mean?"
I said, "We just got the camera.
"If somebody's shooting at you,
it's easier if you can shoot back."
He said, "I don't care
if you got film in it.
"I want those cameras there
and I want 'em there all the time.
"Those cameras, whether
they've got film in them or not,
"are the eyes of the world.
"And there are no cowards
in front of a camera."
John Ercole was
one of the photographers.
The sniper, wherever he was,
I'm in his sights.
I gotta move back and forth.
He's trying to hit me in the foot.
He keeps hitting the ground.
I'm photographing this tank.
Our marines are carrying some badly
wounded marines on their shoulders
and using the tank as protection.
The tanks were a key element
in the victory.
This was shot in colour, but,
like these pictures from inside a tank,
it was released in black and white.
The last Japanese strongholds
were the hills,
honeycombed with caves, from which
they had to be painfully routed out.
The big thing on Saipan
was knocking these guys out.
We had people speaking Japanese
trying to get 'em to give up.
We took an oath that you were willing
to die to save your buddy
and to get shot to save your buddies.
The Japanese took it a little further.
Their oath was to die
rather than give up.
They were told we had to kill our own
children to get in the Marine Corps,
all kinds of stories
that these people had been told.
As always, only a handful
of Japanese soldiers surrendered.
Mostly it was civilians who gave up.
But even some of them
were too terrified to do so.
There's a shot on Saipan
where I come across a woman.
There's a cut in the cliff.
She's 50 yards away from me.
She's got a child standing here,
baby in her hand, and she spots me.
She sees the camera,
which is on a gunstock.
She doesn't know it's a camera.
As I raise it up, she kicks this kid
off the cliff, throws the baby off the cliff,
and she takes the dive.
That's all on film.
Only maybe... four seconds.
That's the fear that these people
were embedded with.
This shot of the dead child, one of
the most pathetic images of the war,
was not released at the time.
These paratroopers were the first
to breach Hitler's Atlantic wall.
They would land in Normandy in the
pre-dawn darkness of June 6th 1944,
forerunners of history's
greatest amphibious landing.
The bombers were next.
Every D-Day plane carried
broad identifying stripes.
This defence against friendly fire
used up all the white paint in England.
Carl Voelker remembers that morning.
We flew twice.
Went out early in the morning.
It was too dark to do much.
I was photographing the bombs
going down on the beach.
They brought sandwiches out.
We stayed with the plane.
It was re-bombed, refuelled
and we went out.
We went across the Channel
and we saw the boats and the ships
from Torquay, southern England,
all the way across.
It was quite a sight
to see so much equipment
being moved across the Channel.
They were bumper to bumper.
The troops passed the hours
in the usual pastimes of anxious waiting.
But, inescapably,
they were alone with their thoughts.
And with the equipment on which,
luck aside,
and who dared think about that,
their lives would depend.
In that whole armada, only one
creature didn't know what awaited him.
But even he was prepared for the worst.
Still, the choppy Channel
and the fear took their toll.
As it brightened, gliders appeared,
carrying more troops to assault
the Germans from behind their lines.
Then the bombers, flying low, returned.
But the second time we went over low,
maybe 5,000 feet.
It was exceptional for us.
We never bombed down that low.
Voelker's bomb spotting
was also exceptional,
steady and unerring.
In most documentaries of World War II,
you'll see a chicken-foot impression
on the screen.
That day I got static electricity
in the camera.
The sparks appear in the gate
and it's on every foot of film.
That was my D-Day.
"It was like a thousand Fourth of Julys
rolled into one," an eyewitness said.
But the bombardment came too soon.
It was too dark for accuracy,
or for Walter Rosenblum's camera.
I couldn't go in on the first wave
'cause it was dark.
No way I could photograph.
The landing craft came back
and loaded up with another crew,
and I went into that crew.
Like you see in the movies,
you climb down a rope ladder.
I went in on one of these landing craft.
The men in these waves would
confront D-Day's grimmest reality:
The sight of their fallen comrades.
We landed on the beach
and the thing that struck me first
is I'd never seen
a dead person in my life,
but I was surrounded by death.
There were Gls in the water,
rolling up and back.
Blood in the water.
It was a very frightening sight.
The Signal Corps cameramen
live with a bitter irony:
Almost the entire surviving
photographic record of D-Day
was shot by coastguard cameramen.
The film exposed by Rosenblum
and the other men on the beaches
would be lost.
By late morning,
the beachhead was established.
At the end of the day, the cameramen
surrendered their hard-won footage.
We turned our footage in
to the beach masters.
A colonel went to each beach master
and picked up the film,
put it all in a duffel bag, put it
on his shoulder and went out to a ship.
Going up the side, he dropped it
over the side and all the film was lost.
There was one exception:
A cameraman named Dick Taylor.
He made this great shot.
By default, these few seconds constitute
D-Day's most famous footage.
The only American film
you see from D-Day
was our motion-picture guy
that was with 1 st Infantry Division.
He got wounded
and carried his film back with him.
He got about three or four scenes
before he got hit.
Much of Taylor's footage
is of combat's aftermath.
It is of men who have
spent themselves in war,
trying to regather their strength.
They dig in, they tend to the wounded.
Mostly, they register
the shock of survival.
Their history has shrunk,
for the moment, to this one terrible day.
They can see nothing but the awful
shore they so recently crossed.
They're forced to contemplate the
deaths they, by some miracle, avoided.
On D Plus One, the supplies rolled in.
So did the foul weather.
Everywhere you looked, boats and
their crews were in peril on the seas.
Walter Rosenblum
was there shooting stills.
So was his motion-picture partner,
Val Pope.
There were sinking boats
that I presume had been shelled.
A young army lieutenant
swam out with a life raft
in order to bring back
the people off the boat.
When I started, I said,
"Walter, you're a good swimmer.
"You have two alternatives.
"You could go out with him and help him
or you could photograph."
And at that moment I realised
that my job was to take pictures,
and that's what I had to do.
These stills and the movie footage
helped fill some of the gaps
left by the lost D-Day pictures.
Tragically, Val Pope would be killed
in action a few days later.
A well-known picture
was this young lieutenant
who was bending over a GI
giving him first aid.
He looked like the most heroic fellow
I'd ever seen in my life.
I was very happy
to make that photograph.
It epitomised what the war was about:
People who came to fight
for what they believed in.
Three weeks after D-Day,
there were almost half a million
American soldiers in France.
Stephen Ambrose calls this
the great achievement
of the American people and system
in the 20th century.
Who would dispute him?
Only the Gls still struggling
to break out of their beachhead
against unforgiving terrain
and a stubborn enemy.
On the beaches,
the barrage balloons arose,
protecting the incoming supplies
against the almost
entirely absent Luftwaffe.
Everywhere, casualties were counted.
They were heavy for airborne troops,
but the planners
were ready for death, too.
It was neatly registered.
The high command
were less well prepared
for a unique and hazardous feature
of Normandy's topography.
All through Normandy,
it was hedgerow country.
They were six foot high
and six foot thick.
Trees growing out of the tops.
They're fortresses.
We could be digging in on one side
and the Germans'd be digging in
on the other side.
There would be little openings
with gates through 'em.
Guys would have to attack
through them or over the top of one.
The hedgerows,
planted in the Middle Ages,
frustrated the war of movement,
but not for long.
An ordinance sergeant figured out
that he could weld two big prongs
on the front of a tank.
They'd dig into the hedgerow and
the tank'd shove its way right through.
After we got that, it made it a lot simpler.
Some 60 years ago,
an anonymous German bureaucrat
poked his finger on a map
and decreed that this French field
would be the site
of these coastal batteries.
They're still there today,
silent yet ominous reminders
of the way in which war intrudes itself
on ordinary human life.
And, yet, that life
has an amazing stubbornness.
The guns may thunder,
but the fields must still be harvested.
The geese have to cross the road,
even if it's choked with military traffic.
The ordinary scheme
of human life goes on.
Our cameramen recorded that, too.
The young liberators were bored,
restless, coltish, when off duty.
These airmen discovered
these horses in a Norman pasture.
One was an Oklahoma cowboy
who for a moment gracefully recaptured
one of civilian life's lost pleasures.
It was little known that
our pre-invasion bombardment
killed a lot of French people
living behind the line.
I was amazed that
the French people I photographed
didn't blame the Americans.
They regarded us as the liberators,
even though our bombs killed people.
There was a sweetness
in these welcomes and a certain haste.
After the Normandy breakout,
it finally became a war of movement.
For this Free French tank battalion,
it was a personal war,
as Russ Meyer learned
when he joined them.
Took our jeep right with the French tank.
We'd go right between them.
His best wartime buddy, Bill Teas,
was already with the French unit.
He would lend his name to Meyer's
first post-war erotic hit,
The lmmoral Mr Teas.
Needless to say, the French tankers
were welcomed with special warmth.
The Americans were included
in that welcome.
They would all say,
"Amricain. Trs bien."
There was danger on these roads.
We go down the street
and the guy says, "Stop!
"Don't go! There's a bunch of Germans
down that road.
"Get the hell out of there."
Forewarned, they engaged
in a brief, violent firefight.
This time, they took prisoners.
I'd love to know the guy today,
'cause if we hadn't been warned,
somebody'd have gotten our tonsils.
But they weren't always so lucky.
In a later engagement,
they took heavy losses.
As was often the case in tank battles,
the wounds were ghastly
and hard to accept.
As tankers struggled
to free a trapped comrade,
others rethought the battle
and re-fought it.
There was a desire
to protect the home front.
If these had been Americans, these
pictures might not have been taken.
You didn't wanna get Gls, though.
Or I would get something where at least
the American wouldn't be
readily recognised.
I was concerned about their family,
that they'd see them in the newsreels.
But Paris was nearly at hand,
less than three months after D-Day.
As the liberators approached, the
underground rose against the Germans.
German tanks were opposed by
the Resistance carrying only small arms.
Amazingly, they forced an uneasy truce.
It is possible they prevented
the destruction of the city.
The honour of entering Paris first
was given to Free French forces,
but as their leaders
showed themselves, gunfire erupted.
De Gaulle and other officers were there.
I'm sure Leclerc had to be there.
The city had not been fully cleared
of German troops.
They all came marching
down the Champs lyse
as part of this parade.
There were snipers, and there were
shots fired and everybody ducked.
The street fighting was actually
intense and deadly.
People were pinned to the ground,
unable to move.
The terror was palpable.
Reprisals against French collaborators
were swift and harsh.
That was not the end
of French vengeance.
We were advised of activity
regarding collaborationists.
They were taking, in this case,
women collaborationists
and shaving their heads.
These are, I guess, women who had
socially gone out or played around
with some of the German soldiers.
The idea, as I understood it,
was that for months afterwards
everybody would know
who the collaborationists were.
Mostly, they said nothing.
Some smiled
and some just stared straight ahead
and, I guess, tried to make the best
of what they were faced with.
The Allies intended to bypass Paris,
but it was unavoidably in their path.
Most soldiers did not stop.
For them, Paris was just a quickly
glimpsed place on the road to victory.
In a smaller French city,
Fred Bornet found the joy of liberation
more freely expressed
and more directable.
The people were out in the street
and they were just absolutely ecstatic,
hysterical with delight.
They hung bunting
and they'd lift glasses of wine.
What is so great
is that you don't have a script.
You seize those wonderful moments.
And there were lots of girls,
flowers in their hair.
They were waving and greeting.
But they were not doing it...
with enough enthusiasm.
I thought, "This is such a great moment.
"It should be like the big parade."
So I said to the girl, "Look,
"when that stream
of soldiers is walking by,
"run against that stream and kiss them."
And I cried. That was a release.
And then they offered me
soup and fried eggs,
and they were waving flags.
You have a feeling
that you're doing something
that is worthwhile.
In the fall of 1944,
American eyes were fixed on Europe,
where headquarters spoke,
overconfidently as it turned out,
of the war's end being in sight,
almost within reach.
No such claims
were made for the Pacific.
Combat there was as brutal as ever.
Many of its fighting men
felt isolated and ignored.
Navy cameraman Sam Sorenson.
The marines I worked with were happy
to have pictures taken of them.
In the Pacific they were so lonely.
You never saw a woman.
One of the reasons I was happy
to work with the marines
was because we got better pictures
of combat action.
Peleliu, September 1944.
The fury of the naval and air
bombardment was unprecedented.
For three days, we shelled that thing.
When we approached those islands,
it looked like nice, green, rolling hills.
When we got through, it looked like
rugged, jagged mountains.
There were little coral mountains
sticking up all over.
I couldn't believe
anything could live on there.
But the bombing was ineffective.
The enemy remained safe
in their bunkers.
So when the marines started in,
it was not only
that they got hung up on that reef,
they were caught in Japanese crossfire.
A lot of 'em had to unload there
and go on in with
amphibious tractors and guns.
And then when they hit the beach,
they got right on this point, they call it.
Ironically, Peleliu was unnecessary.
MacArthur thought he needed it
to shield his invasion.
Historians now agree that he did not.
The marines took 50% casualties.
They holed up in caves.
They never made charges.
And they had little spider holes
where one sniper would stand.
They finally would close 'em up.
They'd blow 'em up
and close the entrance.
Then the Japanese
would come out of another hole.
It took two months to get 'em out.
They took maybe 100 prisoners
out of this.
In the end, we had lost
something like 1900 marines
and we had to kill
nearly 13,000 Japanese.
Meantime, the war in the
China-Burma-lndia theatre continued.
Dave Quaid soldiered on.
There was a Thanksgiving air drop.
President Roosevelt said, "No matter
where your son or daughter is,
"he's gonna get a turkey dinner."
I said, "That's hogwash.
I'm gonna photograph this drop
"and I'm gonna prove
that it never happened."
Aerial resupply had been taken over
by a new unit fresh from Europe.
Their adjustment to the CBI was poor.
Coming in too fast and low,
drops were often inaccurate
and destroyed their cargo.
The plane now was directly over
the trail we were on.
So I yelled to these guys
to get off the trail.
The skinny, emaciated guy there
with the camera is me.
They scored a direct,
if accidental, hit on Quaid.
The medics assisted me,
as did my buddy Bill.
He is still moved by Bill Brown's
willingness to risk his life for him.
Here was this chute coming down
on me, right on my face.
I said, "Bill, look at that!"
And Bill got up, stepped across me,
said, "I'll get it."
So, there was a puff of wind
and it blew just past my head,
and Bill didn't have to sacrifice himself.
Dave Quaid's war was finished.
He spent the rest of it in hospitals,
having operations on his shattered leg.
Here I am leaving the war,
taken out by a bag of mule feed.
In northern France, the fighting
slowed as the snows came.
The weather masked
a huge German build-up,
24 divisions, near the Ardennes forest.
The Ardennes were cool in the sense
that it was critically cold.
It was very difficult to find
somewhere that you could hide.
The Ardennes did not have big trees.
You had to be very careful
and get down at the base of a tree trunk
and dig as deeply as you could
to protect yourself,
from the standpoint
of getting injured or... finished.
In December, the Americans on this line
were often isolated in small units.
Communications between them
were poor.
They were not expecting the battle
that began on December 16th.
Many Gls fought tenaciously,
though they were often
surrounded by the enemy.
The Bulge, Hitler's
last gamble of the war,
eventually extended 50 miles eastward,
but it did not burst.
It's hard to see from these pictures, but
this engagement involved more soldiers,
600,000 of them,
than any battle in US history.
20,000 Americans died in the Ardennes.
Another 20,000 were wounded.
Among them was a cameraman
named Jim Bates,
who had been in the war since D-Day.
At the Bulge, he did
what a lot of Gls did.
He hitched a ride on a tank.
Their motors provided warmth.
I asked one tank
if I could ride on the back.
The lid flew open.
"Can you fire a machine gun?"
I said, "I had my basics
with 11th Armoured Division."
They picked me up and put me
in the gunner's position.
Bates didn't know he was heading
into battle with German Tiger tanks.
He grabbed shots
of a German ambulance
aiding one of their wounded tank crews.
The number one tank had passed
an open area and was firing uphill.
About that time
I could hear this "kerthunk".
The commander says,
"They're shooting at us."
About that time,
that second boom came along.
It felt like a train hit me in the back.
I didn't know if I was dead,
and he screamed,
"If you're not hit, get up,
because he's gonna run over you."
I looked back and my camera
was under the tank treads.
That's what made me move.
On the radio they said, "Get up here.
"There's hardly enough photographers
left for the rest of the war."
I said, "I'll ride on the hood.
It'll be a warm place to be for a bit."
Ignoring his wounds, Bates kept
shooting as the tank rumbled to the rear.
Arosi saw me, the buddy
I'd normally work with.
He said, "The hospital's next door."
I said, "Not yet. I'm gonna dictate to you
what, where, why and when."
He says, "You won't quit, will you?"
I said, "No way."
The situation remained fluid for days,
especially for Doug Wood.
Ailing with flu, he took refuge
in a command post.
He sent his driver and stills man
for more film, then fell asleep.
He did not hear to order to evacuate
the CP when it came under fire.
My still guy at that time
was a new guy, a replacement.
He told the driver,
whose name was lvan Babcock,
"There's some guys in funny hats
and I think they're shooting at us."
The driver told me, "I could see
their tracers going past my nose."
But he wouldn't stop.
The other guys had stopped there
and they'd captured 'em.
He just drove right on through
and let 'em keep shooting at him.
What Babcock drove through
was the Malmedy Massacre.
It was the war's worst atrocity
visited on American soldiers.
Somewhere between 71 and 129 Gls,
the number remains in dispute,
were rounded up and shot by SS troops.
They had infiltrated our lines, some
of them wearing American uniforms.
In this last-gasp German effort,
many of their troops were teenagers.
The Germans escaped serious
punishment at the war-crimes trials.
The weather lifted in late December
and air operations resumed.
I was fortunate enough, or unfortunate,
however you wanna look at it,
to lead the greatest air-combat battle
of World War II.
Eight of us had climbed up
over the field.
We were joining up
when 900 German fighters
made an attack on the front
on January 1 st 1945.
The squadron leader - there'd normally
be 12 aeroplanes, we only had 8 -
he couldn't see him.
He said, "You take over the flight."
I dropped five of 'em right on the field.
The pilots, armed with gun cameras,
were also combat cameramen.
Hitler had decided that he would deploy
all the fighters he had
to knock out the fighter fields
to support the Battle of the Bulge.
They planned it for early December,
which would have been effective,
weather wasn't good.
They put it off and said,
"January 1 st, these guys'll all be in bed."
It was all over the front,
not just at our field.
It was at the British field,
at all the northern airfields.
I later got a hold
of Hermann Goering's interviews.
In those interviews,
Goering said the largest loss
that the German Luftwaffe ever had
was the loss on January 1 st.
Mel Paisley, also this film's
chief researcher,
was decorated with
the Distinguished Service Cross.
During the war,
he shot down nine planes.
The Battle of the Bulge
ended January 7th 1945.
Germany was now largely open
to the Allies.
Italy, 1945. Dictator Benito Mussolini
was deposed and exiled,
the government surrendered,
and the populace turned viciously
on their former allies.
I went over to the CP and I was told
they had captured Mussolini.
General Crittenberger
was to take his surrender.
I went down to the CP
the following morning.
Here's a limousine
with three German officers in it.
They'd run into a roadblock
and been captured.
Critt said, "I'm gonna get
this bird's surrender."
I said, "What about Mussolini?"
He said, "Mussolini will have to wait."
And he said, "General,
we're both professionals.
"You can't get out.
The passes are closed.
"The smart thing to do
is surrender the Ligurian Army,
"which is the last intact enemy army."
Went back to see Critt
and he was sitting on a rail, dreaming.
He said, "Montagne,
every cadet at West Point
"dreams of the day when
an enemy army surrenders to him.
"Today it happened to me."
Crittenberger's decision doomed
Mussolini and other Fascists
to death at the hands
of partisan guerrillas.
Their bodies were displayed in Milan.
It had been going on
for some time when we got there.
We photographed what we could:
Crowds, Mussolini hanging upside down,
Petacci alongside him.
I remember her skirt
had fallen over her face.
A woman pinned her skirt between
her legs so she wasn't exposed.
They cut him down, his head hit,
and picked him up.
The partisans were running it.
We had nothing to do with it.
They took 'em to the morgue.
There were bodies you had to walk on
to get to where Mussolini was.
I asked the morgue attendant,
"Can you get him in the light?"
He said, "If I move him,
his head will fall apart."
So we got Petacci,
put her head on his shoulder.
It became quite a famous shot.
Meantime, Nazi Germany
was in its death throes,
but it desperately fought on.
Everything that could happen to me,
photographically speaking,
did happen that day.
The place was Cologne.
The date was March 6th 1945.
The street fighting was intense.
It was often impossible
to tell soldiers from civilians.
Sometimes, victims caught
in the crossfire were innocent.
By this time we had a new T-26.
The T-26 was so far ahead of
the old Shermans, it was unbelievable.
This German tank was
in front of Cologne cathedral.
It had knocked out some of our tanks,
causing havoc.
They had control over that whole area.
Bates followed the tank,
and, scrambling for position,
got this great footage
of armoured combat.
I heard our T-26 coming up.
The first shot went in and cut the legs
off the tank commander in the Tiger.
You can see the armour-piercing shell
going through the bottom of the picture.
Immediately, the driver
and the gunner climbed out,
but the second shot,
shrapnel had gotten them, too.
The concussion from that 90mm gun
was so tremendous
that it would blow me off my picture
and I'd have to get back on it.
I couldn't use a tripod.
I had to hand-hold it.
The tank commander
that had his legs cut off
just laid on his tank
and burned up in front of the camera.
That thing was burning
even the next morning.
There was still smoke coming out of it
because of all the ammunition in it.
Two months and one day later,
the war in Europe was over.
Its crusaders,
as General Eisenhower called them,
rest in cemeteries all over Europe.
If anything, their deeds are more
revered now than at the time.
Some of their immortality derives
from the photographic record.
The combat cameramen recorded
the last days, hours, moments,
even the last breath,
of many of those who lie here.
It isn't something
they talk about very much.
It was, as they say,
just a part of their job.
But it was a more important job
than they knew.
For the film they made is now
beginning to outlive memory.
Eventually, it will be the only
recollection, made on the spot,
of how our citizen soldiers
lived, fought and died.
The cameramen in Europe
had one more duty to history.
It was unquestionably
their most important:
Recording the horrors
of the death camps.
At Dachau, Walter Rosenblum
was too shocked to shoot.
These pictures were made by others.
There were a group of boxcars.
I climbed up to see what was inside.
The boxcar was full of dead people.
There were 30, 40 boxcars
along that road.
When I looked in, I was so shocked.
Could you imagine, not having seen
anything like that before,
to see a boxcar full of dead,
emaciated people?
At that moment,
I forgot I was a photographer.
I was just overcome by it all.
I was on an assignment with Ellis Carter.
We went into Germany to cover
bomb damage by the Allied airpower.
On April 11th, the 3rd US Army
liberated Buchenwald.
When we heard of this,
we immediately drove over there.
What the cameramen found
was beyond their imagining,
but the inhumanity they recorded
is literally undeniable.
As a solider, I had no knowledge
of these camps.
I had not heard anything about it.
It was horrible. There were bodies
stacked up like cordwood.
We judged them to be
about 60 to 80 pounds in weight.
People were actually dying day by day,
even after the camp was liberated.
Many of the prisoners
could not speak English,
but they raised their hands and showed
their gratitude for us freeing them.
This camp had about 20,000 survivors
at the time of liberation
and about 8,000 of 'em were children.
There was a section
where they displayed tattooed skins,
which were made
into lampshades and book covers.
The German commandant's wife
would select tattooed men
to be doomed to die
and then use their skin.
After a few days, the German civilians
of the town next to Buchenwald,
called Weimar, were paraded through
on a tour of the camp
to show the atrocities and to show them
what the Germans had done.
Many of them wouldn't even look
at the torture or the bodies.
Some of them were crying and some
had their mouth and nose covered,
especially the women.
So, in the filming that we did,
it's evident they just kept going through
because they had to.
They weren't too interested
in looking at the atrocities.
There was a lot of people
that didn't believe it happened.
Here we had it on film.
In all the time I was over there,
this experience stood out in my mind.
It took a while to get over it.
It was something
that you wouldn't wanna see,
you wouldn't wanna go through again.
The horrors of the camp had
a more immediate effect on Art Mainzer.
After what he had seen,
he yearned for normalcy.
I met her in Paris, the day before
the Battle of the Bulge started.
Believe it or not, we were walking down
the boulevard, it starts snowing,
and my buddy and I saw these two
lovely ladies under an umbrella.
So we sneaked in under the umbrella
and introduced ourselves.
I made the decision after I covered
the Buchenwald assignment.
I said, "If I ever get back to France alive,
I'm gonna ask Germaine to marry me."
Being a camera unit,
we had three 16mm cameras
and a couple of Speed Graphics
for the still photos.
We had some cases of champagne that
the Germans looted from the French,
so we got it back to France.
A lot of French people showed up.
In this suburb of Paris, they had not had
a formal wedding during the occupation.
It was quite an event for them.
It was a June wedding,
the month after VE day.
The pictures were his unit's gift to them.
The Mainzers lived together
in the United States
until Germaine passed away in 1998,
after almost 53 years of marriage.
Iwo Jima, February 1945.
As the Americans came closer to Japan,
fighting in the Pacific
grew still more bitter.
The bombardment crumbled one side
of lwo's key bastion, Mount Suribachi,
but it took five bloody days
to reach its summit.
When the marines set out
to place a flag on Suribachi,
they still encountered resistance,
but they persevered
and the flag was raised.
It lacked properly heroic proportions.
Something would have to be done.
It was too small to be seen.
The commanding general figured
we gotta get a bigger flag.
They got some of the LSTs
that were there.
One LST commander said, We've
got a big flag but we've never flown it."
My boss said to me, "Make sure
you send photographers up.
"This will be the official flag raising."
I got in touch with Genaust
and Bob Campbell.
Bill Genaust and Bob hooked up
with Rosenthal going up the hill.
That was Joe Rosenthal
of the Associated Press,
a civilian photographer who had taken
these pictures of the landing.
These are the shots
Genaust took on that climb.
A few days later he was killed in action.
He would not live
to see the images he made.
People would always contest whether
this was the first or the other one.
Bob Campbell didn't like the position
the other two cameramen were in.
So he moved and got a picture
of the first flag coming down
and the second one
going up at the same time.
Rosenthal, however, got the immortal
shot, and a lifetime's controversy,
for he shipped all his pictures back
unseen and undeveloped.
Joe gets on a boat about four days later
and goes to Guam.
He's bombarded by the press
saying, "What was this picture?"
They wanna know
what he thought about it.
He says, "Maybe
it's that picture I posed
"with all the men under the flagpole
raising their rifles."
That word "posed" got
into the lexicon of the problem.
It's hung in there for years and years.
We have fought for 50 years
to try to straighten it out.
I thought at the end of the 50th
anniversary, we got it resolved,
but I think it'll probably go on
for another 50.
The comparison with
the movie footage is definitive.
Rosenthal took the same shot Genaust
did from virtually the same position.
This controversy masks the real story
of lwo Jima, its cost.
Almost 7,000 marines died here,
along with 21,000 Japanese.
The marines won 27 medals of honour,
more than in any other engagement.
Manila, spring of 1945.
It was now "war without mercy",
as one historian called it.
The fires the Japanese set
destroyed 70% of the city.
They killed 100,000 civilians
in an orgy of destruction.
This vengeance on the innocent
was recorded by Don Honeyman.
Next day, the infantry
was moving into the city.
We got some very good street fighting.
Honeyman then joined forces
surrounding the presidential palace.
We were going to the gardens, which
included the other side of the river.
We had the north bank of the river
and they had the south bank,
so we made a crossing of the river
in assault boats.
One wave of boats went over.
They didn't have any trouble.
I figured it was safe
to go on the second run.
We got out in the middle
and the Japanese began to shoot at us
from the side of the river we thought
was ours, which was hardly fair.
Armoured amphibious vehicles
brought the troops safely to shore.
Came across a BAR man
who happened to be down on his elbows,
next to a sign saying,
"Please do not pick the flowers."
In the city, fighting remained intense.
A Japanese strong point
was the legislative palace.
Eight-inch howitzers lined up
side by side, practically,
firing point-blank...
...simply taking down the building
stone by stone, practically.
Despite the firepower levelled at them,
the Japanese hung on in the palace.
Infantry would have to rout them out.
Next day I went to cover
the transfer of civil government
from MacArthur to the Filipinos.
He said very proudly
how Manila was now secure.
I said, "Except the legislative building."
Okinawa, Easter Sunday.
The idea was to stage the invasion
from this large island.
Rather innocently, Lloyd Durant decided
to shoot a film on combat cameramen.
What better subject to put on film than
the story of the combat cameraman,
who was practically
unknown at the time?
We knew our next operation
was in the Pacific.
I said, "Let me go out there
"and let me find the cameramen
we have out there,
"and presumably
they will be in on the action.
"I wanna be there photographing them
photographing the action."
So we hit the beach at Okinawa.
There I was working with these guys,
creeping in foxholes,
squirming along the beach,
and trying to keep the sand
out of the camera and my mouth.
They're trying to do the same thing.
Also, there were
a few bullets flying around.
The battle would continue
for three months.
Among the casualties,
the worst of the war, was a cameraman.
He was a navy cameraman.
Somehow or another
he was hit and blinded.
They had bandaged,
in the field, his eyes.
Some of it was still hanging down.
He could not see.
They brought him up
on the side of the ship.
He got to the top
and he's reaching for help.
He can't see a thing. His buddies
reached up and took him down.
Our commentary is,
"For this cameraman,
the picture was over."
And that's exactly what it was.
He never saw again.
Later that day, the kamikazes came in.
These were guys who were dedicated
to giving their lives for their country.
They crashed into us.
Our anti-aircraft guns
were working at them full time.
Our other problem was
our own flak coming down
did as much damage to many of us
as did the kamikazes.
It could go right through your helmet
if it hit you directly.
Bull Halsey said, "The kamikazes were
the only weapon I feared in the war."
In over 1300 of these suicide attacks,
they sank 26 ships and damaged 300.
This is some of the most
astonishing footage of the war.
There were many near misses,
but most of the navy casualties
at Okinawa are attributed to kamikazes.
They damaged some carriers
but sunk none, yet they persisted.
The last attack was mounted
after the surrender.
These B-24s are over
Balikpapan in Borneo.
The Ploieti of the Pacific,
the huge oil refinery was bombed
for 30 days in the summer of 1945.
They were softening it up for the last
amphibious landing of World War II.
The American coastguard
took Australian troops ashore.
Jerry Anker was there with
his buddy Jim, also a cameraman.
He wanted a picture of himself in action.
Anker obliged with a snap that
became famous in the photo histories.
When the landing craft
hit the beach at Balikpapan,
I said, "That idiot!" and I pulled up
my 4 x 5 and shot the picture.
I only took one picture
and it turned out to be a prize winner.
Here, in the war's waning days,
Anker was presented with
another more terrible photo opportunity.
I had been following this Australian
infantryman with a flame-thrower
for probably a half-hour.
It just so happened that when he shot
this flame-thrower into this cave,
this Japanese soldier
came running out in flames,
and I was able to photograph
the entire sequence.
To this day, I can still smell
the stench of that burning body.
That one unknown soldier dying in
agony, symbolises the waste of war.
Multiply his fate 100,000 times
and you begin to comprehend
Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
But not entirely, for as many people
died later of radiation poisoning
as died in the initial blasts.
We are told these lives were traded
for those that would have been lost
in an invasion of Japan.
All we know for sure is the atomic bombs
brought the war to an abrupt end
and finally stopped
all the killing at over 40 million.
At Nagasaki,
as at the concentration camps,
the combat photographers
had one last service to render.
Dan McGovern speaks for all those
who entered this charnel house.
My effort was to show the world
what the atomic bomb
had done to a nation,
what it had done to human beings.
At the school in Nagasaki,
it sucked out hundreds of kids
through the windows.
I remember one particular scene
that I shot.
I couldn't figure out what was wrong
with this particular person.
He reminded me of a monk,
or Christ with his staff.
He was standing up on a rise
looking over the hill of Nagasaki
from the valley.
He was a radiologist
from the Nagasaki teaching hospital,
which is just down below the hill.
He told me then
that he had lost his wife,
that he was suffering
from radiation sickness.
Two days later he was gone.
Where people were sitting,
permanent shadows were burned.
It was the same way with things.
You can paint over the shadows,
but you cannot erase them.
That was my effort to it,
because we showed
the burned bodies of children.
People would cry out,
"Let's not do this again."
Yet we do. These pictures have been
duplicated in every war
for over a half-century.
The children reach out
in their abandonment,
their incomprehensible loneliness.
The soldiers offer
what comfort they can.
These men and these children
share the terrible bond of war.
But the soldiers will soon move on.
They will not know the fates of orphans
with whom they shared their humanity.
These pictures ought to assure
centuries of peace.
They do not.
But it may be
that after the shooting stops,
the combat cameramen
achieve their finest hour.