Los Angeles Times photographer Marcus Yam won the 2022 Pulitzer Prize for breaking news photography Monday, honoring his coverage of the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan and the fall of Kabul.
The win is the 49th Pulitzer Prize won by The Times since 1942, including six for public service, according to the paper.
The Pulitzer committee honored Yam “for raw and urgent images of the U.S. departure from Afghanistan that capture the human cost of the historic change in the country.”
Yam has been with The Times since 2014. According to the paper, he was part of the Pulitzer-winning breaking news for The Times that covered the San Bernardino terrorist attack in 2015. He was also part of a Pulitzer-winning team for the Seattle Times covering a deadly landslide in Oso, Washington, in 2014.
According to the paper, Yam and reporter Nabih Bulos earned “extraordinary access” to the conflict in Kabul through their contacts with civilians and combatants.
While covering a battle between the Taliban and the outgoing regime, Yam was struck repeatedly in the head by one of the combatants who ordered him to delete photos he had taken, according The Times. But Yam argued for the right of journalists to cover the conflict, and eventually the combatants apologized and offered energy drinks to him and other journalists, the paper reported.