After quickly recapturing Afghanistan this month, the Taliban just released a photo that appears to mock the United States – it’s a recreation of iconic WWII photography Raise the flag on Iwo Jima.
The parody photo was found in a series of Taliban propaganda shots showing an elite commando unit called the Badri Battalion 313 patrolling Afghanistan, equipped with state-of-the-art US soldier gear, including uniforms camouflage, night vision goggles and tactical gear. In the photo, a group of fighters see a Taliban flag hoisting in a manner surprisingly similar to the way six US Marines hoisted the US flag on Mount Suribachi during the Battle of Iwo Jima.
“Similar photographs released in recent days show Taliban fighters carrying weapons and equipment supplied by the United States or allied countries, including M4 rifles and what appear to be Trijicon Advanced Combat Optical Sights, or ACOG.” , Marine Corp Times reports. “The images are a notable departure from traditional depictions of Taliban fighters, who rarely appeared with heavy weapons or in full military gear, loot left behind by the Afghan army.”
Captured by Joe Rosenthal of the Associated Press on February 23, 1945, Raise the flag on Iwo Jima was quickly published in thousands of newspapers around the world and won the Pulitzer Prize for Photography the same year.
Rosenthal’s photograph became the symbol of the United States’ victory in the Pacific War and has become one of the most recognizable photographs of World War II.
The Associated Press has since released the photo to the public domain, and the photo served as the inspiration for the United States Marine Corps War Memorial in Arlington County, Va., Which honors all Marines who have made the ultimate sacrifice since the founding of the branch in 1775..