For more than 10 years, photographer Louie Palu has documented the wars of Iraq and Afghanistan, embedding with U.S. Marines as they sweep for mines or engage with enemy fighters. The result has been intimate portraits of war.
After a two-month period in which he had a number of close calls with improvised explosive devises, Palu was asked to embed with a medical evacuation helicopter. In this conversation with host Dick Gordon, Palu talks about "Night Raid," one photo from Kandahar, Afghanistan. Palu’s medical helicopter was responding to pick up wounded soldiers when an IED exploded underneath it. Palu was jostled around, and almost fell out of the machine, but the pilot was able to right the helicopter, and pick-up the wounded. The photo Palu took that night, of a wounded Afghan soldier, has received wide acclaim. It is a finalist in the Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition, at the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery.