An Indian photographer of the Associated Press (AP) has been chosen as a runner-up for the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News Photography. Rafiq Maqbool was part of the five-man AP team chosen for ‘unforgettable images that take viewers to the frontlines of America’s war in Afghanistan’. Maqbool has covered the Afghanistan war since 2003. This photo, taken on 1 June 2009, is of US Pfc Anthony Vandegrift, of Mililani, Hawaii, of Bravo Company 287, 3rd Brigade, 10th Mountain Division, being treated at Bagram Air Base, after he was wounded by a roadside bomb.
Maqbool first met Vandegrift a few weeks before, when he was embedded with his unit. “I’d taken a photo of him playing the guitar, which made it to the front page of newspapers in Hawaii,” he says. Later, Maqbool was at Bagram base with a medical evacuation helicopter unit. He was taking photos of wounded soldiers when one turned to him and said, “Hey man, how are you? Good to see you.” It was Vandegrift.