From the deaths of many great talents like David Bowie, Alan Rickman and Muhammad Ali, through the wars and catastrophes, to Brexit and the rise of Trump: these influential photographs show how long and difficult this year was. Let’s hope for a better tomorrow.
1. Italian Earthquake
In August, a powerful 6.2 magnitude earthquake rocked central Italy, killing 292 people and making entire villages disappear. The initial earthquake was followed by 2,500 aftershocks, which were felt from Rimini to Naples including Rome. In addition to the loss of human life, widespread destruction of cultural heritage is also reported.
2. North Korea
This picture was released by the Korean Central News Agency on 11 March. Kim Jong Un is supervising the ballistic rocket launch drill of the Strategic Force of the Korean People’s Army at an unrevealed location. Earlier, the supreme leader ordered scientists and engineers to start preparations for launching the satellite as soon as possible.
3. Usain Bolt
Probably this is the most memorable picture from this year’s Olympic Games in Rio. Usain Bolt smiling back at his opponents during the 100m race cracked up the internet. After winning three gold medals both in Peking and London, he managed to take home three golds this time, as well. The world’s fastest man recently announced, that he is retiring in 2017.
4. Calais Jungle
A young Afghan boy films the burning shacks in Calais on 1 March. The so-called Jungle was a refugee and migrant campment in France, which gained global attention during the European refugee crisis. When the population of the camp grew, the French authorities decided to carry out evictions and altogether 6,400 migrants were evacuated to different regions of the country.
After the 70th regular season of the National Basketball Association ended in April 2016, playoffs immediately started. In the finals, Cleveland finally managed to defeat Golden State Warriors and win their first NBA title. Like this picture shows, last year might have been a bit thoug for the players, but they were willing to do anything in order to win a few games.
6. Hurricane Matthew
Matthew was a devastating Category 5 hurricane in October that caused more than 1,5 thousand deaths and $10 billion in damages throughout the Caribbean and the United States. This picture shows how the hurricane destroyed almost everything in a Village Jeremie, Western Haiti.
7. Russian Ambassador
Andrey Karlov, the Russian Ambassador to Turkey was shot dead by while giving an opening speech at a photo exhibition called “Russia as seen by Turks”. The assassin, turned out to be a Turkish policeman, was yelling “don’t forget about Aleppo, don’t forget about Syria” and used the well-know Arabic phrase “Allahu Akbar”. He was finally shot by the police and three more people were harmed.
Everyone was shocked when Angelina Jolie filed for divorce from Brad Pitt. The supercouple has been toghether for 12 years and have six children together, three of whom were adopted. What nobody expected, though, was that the actress requested physical custody of their children. The news were all over social websites and magazines, but the reasons for the divorce are still unclear.
9. Battle of Sirte
A soldier allied with the UN-backed government holds a bunch of grapes as he fires a rifle at Islamic State militants on 31 July. The offensive on Sirte was launched in May under the name of “Impenetrable Wall” or “Solid Foundation”. By December, the Government of National Accord forces managed to take control over the city and kill numerous ISIL warriors.
10. Black Lives Matter
Next to the elections, the second hottest topic in the USA was the police encroachments. Numerous videos proved, that policeman often opened fire too fast, especially on unarmed Afro-American men. Soon, demonstrations started in many big cities with ‘Black Lives Matter’ signs promoting equality. In fact, policemen in the States kill much more people than anywhere else in the world.
11. Fidel Castro
Crying soldiers after the Cuban state television announced that Fidel Castro had died on the night of 25 November. The cause of his death was not disclosed, though. The urn with the ashes of the leader was taken on a four day journey across the island for the burial in Santiago de Cuba. While some were mourning the commander in chief of the Cuban revolution, others felt relieved, since his death meant freedom for them.
12. Christiano Ronaldo
The whole world was laughing at this picture of Ronaldo. He looks so terrified we almost start to feel sorry for him. The football player must have been furious after missing the penalty against Austria in UEFA Euro 2016. With the help of some photoshop countless hilarious pictures sweep the internet.
13. Pope in Auschwitz
Pope Francis has visited the death camp in Auschwitz-Birkenau on 29 July. After walking alone beneath the infamous gate saying ‘arbeit macht frei’, he sat on a bench for several minutes quietly praying. Although the majority of the prisoners were Jewish, thousands of Polish Catholics, Roma and Soviet prisoners lost there their lives, as well.
14. David Bowie
Following David Bowie’s death, woman with a tattoo of the famous British singer David Bowie stands in front of a mural in London. The artwork was painted by Australian street artist James Cochran aka Jimmy C. Bowie died from liver cancer on 10 January two days after his 69th birthday.
This picture of men saving infants in the completely destroyed streets of Aleppo was taken in September. However, this conflict has been present for 5 years now. Back in the peaceful days, Aleppo was the most populated city in Syria with two and a half million residents. When opposition fighters attacked the city, the government decided to strike back and started bombing. Many joined the fight since, including members of Hezbollah, jihadist of Al-Nusra and the Islamic State, and even Russia.
The whole world was following the ridiculous fight between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. Not many have thought that Trump could actually win when he announced that he’s running for president. Despite, he became very popular and more and more pictures of intense meetings with hysterical fans like this started to appear. Even the scandals did not manage to stop him from becoming the new President of the United States.
As we all know, not everybody is happy about the new President of the United States. Despite having a great deal of supporters and winning the elections, Trump also have to face a lot of haters. You have to admit, making creative piece of arts like this is a funny way to show your dissatisfaction.
18. Oscar Pistorious
Paralympic gold medalist Oscar Pistorious walks across the courtroom without his prosthetic legs during the third day of resentencing hearing. He plead guilty shooting and killing his supermodel girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp Pistorious in his home, but claimed that he mistook her for a possible intruder. The South african runner was sentenced 6 years imprisonment.
Although David Cameron had promised that if he wins the election, there would be a EU membership referendum, the prime minister had made it clear that he wanted Great Britain to stay. UK Independence Party leader Nigel Farage and Mayor of London Boris Johnson, however, promoted leaving the European Union. Finally, on 23 June 54% voted for the break-apart. After Brexit, many politicians resigned from their positions.
20. UEFA Euro
This summer was huge for millions of football fanatics. They were supporting and cheering for their favourite teams together with thousands random strangers in the streets and stadiums. Regardless of the threatening dangers and terror, the host country was France, which made it to to finals. Cristiano Ronaldo was injured, but Portugal succeeded and won the game with one goal.
21. Afghan Messi
A little Lionel Messi fan Murtaza Ahmad wears a blue and white plastic bag as a jersey with ‘Messi 10’ scrawled on it and playing football. The picture of the 5-year-old went viral and a few months after his dream came true. He finally met Messi and the whole team of Barcelona before a match in Doha, Qatar.
Even hell seems a better place after seeing the horrific pictures of refugees fleeing their home countries. Scared people were trampling on each other in tiny boats with a constantly increasing number of corpses on the bottom. According to the datas of the International Organization for Migration approximately 360 thousand refugees and migrants came to Europe, mostly through Greece and Italy, and over 4000 people died during their one way trip on the Mediterranean Sea.
23. Coup d’état Attempt
On 15 July soldiers took over several strategic points in Ankara and Istanbul. This picture though, shows another aspect of the attempt. Civilians are fighting confused soldiers, most of whom did not even know what kind of action they were taking part in. After the attempt failed, cleanups started, which meant that thousands of soldiers, generals were arrested, judges were fired. Erdogan was accusing Fethüllah Gülen, a Turkish preacher for organizing it.
24. Lorry Attacks
A lorry ploughed into a large crowd watching fireworks in Nice on Bastille Day killing 84 people in total. At the same time, the driver was shooting a gun, injuring 300 more. The police managed to stop and kill the member of the Islamic State. Another terror attack happened in Berlin a few days before Christmas. The driver killed 12 people and injured 53 with a lorry he stole from a Polish man. He was caught near Milan a few days after.
This man is casually taking a picture of himself in a burning field. Not exactly an ordinary selfie, right? In October Iraq joined forces with other international forces against the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant to reconquer the city of Mosul, which was taken away in 2014. The Iraqi Prime Minister, Haider al-Abadi claims that 3 more months are needed to completely destroy ISIL.
26. Chapecoense Real
A boy sits alone on the stands during a tribute to the football players of Chapecoense Real. On 28 November 2016, a charter flight carrying the Brazilian team to Copa Sudamericana Finals crashed near Medellín, Colombia. Only 6 people survived out of the 77 people on board including the staff and journalists. Due to the crash, the competition was suspended indefinitely and the Brazilian government has suspended LaMia Airlines’s flying license for skipping a crucial refuelling stop.