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Yevgeny Khaidei, one of the most famous war photographers of his time, was born on March 23, 1917. Originally, the boy’s name was Yefim, but later his colleagues started calling him Yevgeny as it was more common to the Russian ear than his Jewish birth name.
Khaldei is the only Soviet photographer who had been photographing the Great Patriotic War over its entire war-ravaged 1,418 days.
When the need arose to send a photographer to Potsdam and Nuremberg, it was Khaidei who the Soviet leadership wanted there.
During the Nuremberg trial three of his photos were submitted as proof of the Nazi’s crimes. There are the photos of the desolate Sevastopol, the burned houses of Murmansk and victims in the courtyard of a Rostov prison.
A Jewish boy, whose father and sisters were killed by the Gestapo, was photographing the bloody atrocities carried out by the Nazi war criminals.
Many people used to ask him: how could a simple mechanic like him who only had a 7-grade school education take such amazing pictures? Khaldei answered that it all came from his heart. He said he had always wanted to take photos in such a way so that people would be interested in his work not only today, but tomorrow and the day after tomorrow.
That is why though all these years people are still fascinated by the photos he had made with his ‘Leica’.