2015 Photo Contest, Contemporary Issues, 2nd prize

Blue Sky Days


Tomas van Houtryve

VII for Harper's Magazine

17 January, 2014

A fire truck and crew respond to a car fire in the Gila River Indian Community in Maricopa County, Arizona.

In drone strikes abroad, US operators are known to engage in ‘double-tap’ strikes, in which consecutive rounds of missiles are fired on the same target, with the second round intended to kill those who respond to the first. The Bureau of Investigative Journalism documented at least five such strikes in Pakistan in 2012.

Since 2002, the US has used unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs, or drones) to collect intelligence and carry out airstrikes in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia. The aircraft are guided via satellite by distant operators. The attacks have resulted in a large number of fatalities, including hundreds of civilians.

About the photographer

Tomas van Houtryve

Initially a student in philosophy, Tomas van Houtryve developed a passion for photography while enrolled in an overseas university program in Nepal. Immediately after graduation ...

Technical information

Shutter Speed
Focal length
18.3 mm

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