The photograph of six men raising an American flag atop Mount Suribachi on Iwo Jima in February 1945 during World War II has been accused of being staged in the past, but now the iconic image is facing a new controversy. As first reported by AP, the Marine Corps is investigating the identity of one of the photo's subjects, Navy Corpsman John Bradley. The issue was first raised by two amateur historians Eric Krelle and Stephen Foley, who published their evidence in the Omaha World-Herald back in 2014.
According to the two, and reported by the AP, Bradley is wearing a cartridge belt designed to hold rifle magazines and has wire cutters hanging from one of his pockets. As a corpsman, he would likely not have had a rifle and would have had no need for wire cutters. Corpsmen, in World War II, were mostly armed with only a pistol so that their hands were free to work on patients. The historians also point out issues with Bradley’s pants and the presence of a hat underneath his helmet in the photo. According to the AP report, Bradley’s pants are not cuffed in the photo, but other pictures from that day show his pants cuffed. Also, in other photos from the day, he is not wearing a hat under his helmet, according to the report.
Head over to the Washington Post to read the full story.
Feature image via Joe Rosenthal/AP