Mar. 6, 2015

Politics and Public Suicide

Story from Ranker dot com

Thich Quang Duc, a Vietnamese Mahayana Buddhist monk, committed public suicide on June 11, 1963, by burning himself to death in the middle of a busy intersection in Saigon. Duc's self-immolation was to protest the persecution of Buddhists by South Vietnam's Roman Catholic government as stated in a letter drafted prior to his death.

After gathering a small group of journalists to the area, Duc sat in the meditative lotus position on a small cushion in the middle of the busy street. He was doused with gasoline, spoke a few words, and then struck a match and dropped it on himself. Duc barely moved and did not make a sound as he was engulfed in flames. Malcolm Browne, the Saigon bureau chief for the Associated Press, photographed the suicide, and his work was later named the World Press Photo of the Year.