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May-11-2010 19:22printcomments

The Strong Weapon of Forgiveness

Forgiveness ennobles the spirit.

Phan Thị Kim Phúc
Phan Thị Kim Phúc

(MADRID) - This June, 38 years will have passed since the photos of that certain naked and frightened girl, running unclothed down the highway.

This image, that perpetrated the horrors of the Vietnam War, has appeared thousands of times throughout the entire Media, especially throughout all television networks. The girl, Kin Phuc, is today’s UNESCO Ambassador and manages a foundation that aids children who have become victims of war and violence.

Far away are the 17 operations that treated her Napalm acquired burns in 65 percent of her diminutive body. Nick Ut, author of the 1973 Pulitzer Prize winning image, took her to the policlinic and saved her life. She remained hospitalized for 14 months.

She would faint every time the nurses would place her in the tub and would cut off her dead skin. However, she did not die. “Inside of me – she’d say - there was a strong little girl that wanted to live. I overcame everything thanks to the love of my family and of God”. One of the lessons learnt from this experience has been to ask for forgiveness. When she first read Jesus’ words “love your enemies”, she did not know how to do it. She thought it would be impossible. “I had to pray a lot and it was not easy. But in the end I did it”.

In 1996 she met one of the pilots that had participated in the bombing of her town. She forgave him because, she assures, “forgiveness stronger than whatever weapon in the world”. She is convinced that her life is a symbol of forgiveness and hope.

Forgiveness ennobles the spirit.

“One forgives just as much as one loves. On the contrary, vengeance gets rid of peace. According to “In the Solitude of Silence”, forgiveness, the magnanimity and oblivion of offenses, is the best way to live in peace”. (translated by Gianna A. Sanchez-Moretti)


Author and journalist Clemente Ferrer Roselló, a prestigious Spanish advertising character, presents a fascinating personal and professional career fully devoted to the world of communication in its varied dimensions. He earned a PhD in Information Sciences from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid, BA in Advertising from the Universidad Autonoma de Barcelona Master in Marketing from the School of Marketing Studies in Madrid.

He has been Associate Professor of Business Management at the Faculty of Economics and Business, University of Navarra and a contributor to the Madrid daily ABC. He also spent several years teaching, both in the Official School of Advertising as the School of Information Sciences at the Complutense University of Madrid. In 1985 he was awarded the Gold Master, granted by the Senior Management Forum and AMPE Prize 1996 to the "long and brilliant career advertising."

You can write to Clemente at this address: clementeferrer3@gmail.com




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Osotan; May 12, 2010 5:25 am (Pacific time)

Still one of the saddest, paralyzing images I've ever seen. Kin Phuc,I am sorry. If we were all sorry together maybe these war mongering bastards would be shamed by the evil bs they perpetuate, but I am naive, I know. I pray for peace.


gp May 11, 2010 8:53 pm (Pacific time)

Read The Girl in the Picture by Denise Chong for the story of her life after the burns.

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