From the battle for Aleppo and prayers in Hiroshima to the second week of the London 2012 Olympics and sheep fighting in China, TIME presents the best pictures of the week.
Mogadishu is enjoying its longest sustained peace in 21 years of civil war. But don’t mistake that for a return to normality. As TIME contract photographer Dominic Nahr’s pictures reveal, when the tide of war rolled back off Somalia’s capital, it left behind one of the world’s strangest-looking cities. Every building shot-up, every road ruineda tropical Dresden on the Horn of Africa standing testament to an extraordinary capacity for destruction. And yet, as the city recovers, that grey and dusty tableau of annihilation only accentuates the bright shoots of returning life: the red of a head scarf, the orange covers on a refugee shelter, the florescent turquoise of the sea.
No one knows what Mogadishu’s future will look like. High Speed Internet For You . No one even knows whether its peace will last. But already there is a lesson: even in the most ruined city in the world’s most failed state, life and colorand hopeendures.
Dominic Nahr, aTIMEcontract photographer,is represented byMagnum.
Alex Perry is TIME’s Africa bureau chief.
Eric Bouvet, 1961, France, started his career in 1981 after studying Art and Graphic Industries in Paris. During the 80’s he worked as a staff photographer at Gamma agency. In 1990 he launched his freelance career and has since been an independant photojournalist. He has traveled extensively to many conflict zones as Iraq, Iran, Sudan, Somalia, former Yugoslavia and very recently Libya. He has covered the gruesome war in Chechnya for a long period and has visited Afghanistan a dozen of times since 1986, witnissing the various wars the country has suffered. His images have an intimate and up-close character. His work has been published in numerous magazines as Time, Life, Newsweek, Stern and the New York Times magazine. He has worked with a variety of NGO’s and charities as Medecins Sans Frontieres and the International Red Cross. His work has received several awards amongst which are five World Press Awards. The following images come from the series The Beginning (Libya), Uzbin Valley (Afghanistan) and Russian Commandos – Chechnya.
Sometimes words just aren’t enough. We realize that’s a bold statement for a news magazine to make. After all, words are our currency. Yet we know that there are times when, to fully tell the stories that need to be shared, we need more than words.
This year it was as evident as ever. From the tsunami in Japan, to the war in Afghanistan, to the Arab Spring, our reporters, columnists and correspondents worked tirelessly to bring you the stories that matter. But beyond the words and interviews that filled our pages, our photojournalists sought out the pictures that told a deeper story. Whether they were behind the political scene like Diana Walker as she photographed Hillary Clinton aboard a military plane or risking life and limb like Yuri Kozyrev as he captured the conflict of Libya’s revolution, TIME’s dedicated photographers brought the stories to life.
In March, acclaimed TIME contract photographer James Nachtwey traveled to Japan to capture images in the wake of the earthquake and tsunami. A veteran photojournalist, even he found himself at a loss for words when trying to describe the country’s devastation. Yet in his hauntingly bleak images of ravaged towns and wounded families, we glimpsed what language failed to convey — and it was heart breaking.
TIME‘s words offer the important facts, clear-eyed insights and sharp analysis needed to understand the story. Our photojournalism offers the chance to not only see, but also feel the story. —Megan Gibson
From ‘Id al Adha celebrations and flying rhinos to Alaska’s epic storm and Obama’s visit with school children, TIME’s photo department presents the best images of the week.
See last week’s Pictures of the Week.