If you ever ask where the pain is, then the answer would be, “in a moment”. Sometimes it’s blurry, sometimes it’s obscured, giving a heart-wrenching pain forever. But what if this moment is caged in a vivid image? Yes, then it will haunt everyone who sees it once.
Here are some of the most powerful and heartbreaking photos from around the world that have left the scars of deep regrets in human history forever:
1 | The Two Hungry Children Living By Scavenging On A Kathmandu Junkyard
This powerful image is of two vulnerable children who live nearby to a junkyard in Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal. Every day they search the junkyard for something useful that they can resell for money so they can buy food. For this heartbreaking iconic photo, the photographer Chan Kwok Hung from Hong Kong won the title of CIWEM Environmental Photographer Of The Year 2011.
2 | A Final Embrace
April 25, 2013, a garment factory building collapsed in Savar, near Dhaka, Bangladesh, due to the structural faults, claiming more than a thousand lives. The two victims shown on this iconic heartbreaking photo are amid the rubble of the collapsed building. The lower parts of their bodies were buried under the concrete. The blood from the eyes of the man ran like a tear. This image, while deeply disturbing, is also hauntingly beautiful, which stands perfectly for “The Most Haunting Iconic Photograph From Bangladesh”.
3 | Death of Alan Kurdi, Bordrum, Turky – The Most Heart Breaking Photo
This image is of a three-year-old Syrian Refugee, Alan Kurdi, after a failed Smuggling, that made global headlines as “The Most Heartbreaking Photo” in September 2015.
4 | The Nagasaki Brothers
Joe O’Donnell, the man who took this famous historic photo at Nagasaki shortly after the bombing. The younger kid in the picture was dead, and the elder boy carried his dead brother to a crematorium, watching him burn but still holds himself from crying. To say the truth, his heartbreaking expression will bring tears to anyone’s eyes.
5 | The Heartbreaking Photo Of The Burning Monk
The Buddhist monk, Thich Quang Duc set himself on fire on June 11, 1963, as a form of protest against the killings of Buddhists by the South Vietnam government. This historic event occurred in Saigon, Vietnam. Thich never moved a muscle, never uttered a sound while in the fire, and he was at the lotus position till his death. Read Full Story
6 | Terrible Human Being
Turkey was responsible for the 1915 Armenian Genocide. This is a heartbreaking photo of a Turkish official teasing starving Armenian children by showing bread.
7 | Shame On Society
This heartbreaking photo was taken just after World War II had ended, where a French woman has her head shaved by civilians as a penalty for having consorted with German troops.
8 | Crossing The Berlin Wall: A Heart Of Peace At War
This powerful photo depicts the heart touching moment when an East German soldier in 1961 helping a small child cross the Berlin Wall on the day it was completed, even though he could’ve faced death as a punishment. The child likely got left behind in the chaos of families fleeing out of East Germany.
9 | Inside An Auschwitz Gas Chamber
No words to say. Each scratch contains unbearable pains and miseries. The Auschwitz concentration camp was a complex of over 40 concentration and extermination camps operated by Nazi Germany in occupied Poland during World War II and the Holocaust. At least 1.1 million people were killed there between 1942 and 1944.
10 | The Child Of Bhopal Gas Tragedy
In December 1984, India underwent the most horrible industrial disaster of a poisonous gas leak that is known as the Bhopal Gas Tragedy. It killed several thousand people including this sinless child, photographed as it was being buried; and injured more than half a million. It’s one of the most heartbreaking photos we have ever seen!
11 | The “Mass Grave 3” Of Bergen-Belsen
This is one of the most heartbreaking photos taken from the World War II. It depicts the unforgettable infamy of Mass Grave 3, one of the Nazis concentration camps where over 50 thousand people were killed. The man standing among the dumped bodies is the camp doctor named Fritz Klein, who was hanged in December 1945 for his cruelty and brutality.
12 | String Of Tears
Diego Frazao Torquato, a 12 year old Brazilian playing the Violin at his teacher’s funeral. The teacher had helped him escape poverty and violence through music.
13 | The Starving Boy In Uganda, 1980
In 1980 Mike Wells took this powerful heartbreaking photograph of a Catholic missionary holding the hand of a starving Ugandan boy. This non-human like hand shows, starvation is an eternal curse to this world.
14 | The Congo Hands, 1904
A father staring at the severed hand and foot of his five-year-old daughter who was killed, and allegedly cannibalized, by the members of Anglo-Belgian India Rubber Company militia in Belgian Congo, in 1904. She was punished for failing to make the daily rubber quota!
15 | The Human Zoos: The Western world’s shameful secret, 1900-1958
A young Filipino girl is pictured sitting on a wooden bench in an enclosure in Coney Island, New York in a horrifying 1906 ‘exhibit’. Thousands of indigenous individuals from Africa, Asia, and the Americas were brought to the United States and Europe, often under dubious circumstances, to be put on display in a quasi-captive life in “human zoos.”
16 | Evelyn McHale: The Most Beautiful Suicide
In 1947, when Evelyn was just 23 years old, she plunged to her death from the 86th-floor observation deck of the Empire State Building in New York. She landed on a limousine parked at the curb. Taken by Rob Wileys, this iconic yet heartbreaking photo is considered to be “the most beautiful suicide” in the world, which depicts Evelyn’s body to be unnaturally intact. Read Full Story
17 | The Napalm Girl
In this heartbreaking war photo, South Vietnamese forces can be seen following terrified children, including 9-year-old Kim Phuc, who is running naked from a napalm attack on June 8, 1972. Napalm is a highly flammable mixture of a gelling agent and a volatile petrochemical, which burns at high temperatures. Napalm bomb is effective against dug-in enemy personnel, flowing into foxholes, trenches, bunkers and other improvised troop shelters. Even people in undamaged shelters can be killed by hyperthermia, radiant heat, dehydration, asphyxiation, smoke exposure, or carbon monoxide poisoning. This iconic war photo, by photographer Nick Ut, won a Pulitzer Prize.
18 | The Agony Of Omayra Sanchez
In 1985, a 13-year-old brave Colombian girl named Omayra Sanchez was trapped up to her waist in a volcanic mudflow. She was mostly alert and was interviewed. Knowing she would die, volunteers and rescuers did their best to comfort her. She died after 60 hours, and her photo became iconic. Read Full Story
19 | The Shadows Of Hiroshima
When the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima, the blast was so intense that the radiation from the explosion created permanently burned shadows of people and objects into the ground and walls.
20 | The Vulture And The Little girl
Taken by the renowned photographer, Kevin Carter, “The vulture and the little girl” is a Pulitzer Winning pathetic photograph of a famine-stricken starving boy – initially believed to be a girl – being preyed upon by a vulture. Kevin Carter committed suicide 3 months after he won the Pulitzer Prize for this unforgettable photograph of a vulture stalking the starving girl, that is said to be the crucial reason behind Carter’s tragic death. Read Full Story