By now you may have seen the photo that won the World Press Photo of the year.
Credit: Paul Hansen, Dagens Nyheter — Associated Press
The picture in itself is horrifying, depressing, and hurts the heart.
Two lifeless, tiny, innocent children being carried by men with a sea of followers behind them. The image is raw. There is dirt on one of the children’s face and you can see the hurt clearly on the child’s face. I can’t even begin to imagine what the child saw moments before death that permanently etched fear onto their face to be carried into the afterlife.
The other child looks asleep.
And although you may have noticed at first, the children’s father is also being carried in the background.
Who are these children?
A two-year-old girl, Suhaib Hijazi.
Her brother, four year-old-old, Mohamed Hijazi.
Their father, 46-year-old Fouad Hijazi.
Killed in Gaza.
Knowing the names and ages of the dead humanizes the conflict. The dead are not just corpses. They are people, children and adults, with families and lives and hopes and dreams. People are not statistics or dead bodies in a picture.
The dead leave this earth while those who survived them are riddled with grief and unimaginable pain.
To read more on the story behind the photo, read this piece by Max FIsher, which also cites part of a report from Human Rights Watch – a link to the report is provided in his article.