This is Aymen in Tunis, Tunisia. Aymen is a 14 year-old child who picked up a cluster bomb outside of his house in Misrata. Upon picking it up, it exploded, ripping off both his hands, tearing off the flesh of his legs, and sending shrapnel into his eye.

He was so happy when he received his postcard from Australia, he asked his cousin to put the card around his neck so he could show everyone.


Aymen when he first arrived in Tunis, Tunisia.

Aymen and a member of the  ”Children of Libya Aid Foundation” who is trying to bring Aymen to the United States for surgery.

Aymen and James Wheeler @wheelertweets in July, 2011.




This is Najib, from Misrata. He was one of the first to receive a get well card.
Najib was hit by a tank shell in June, 2011. His arm and forearm were smashed and a shrapnel hit his chest and crushed part of his lung.

Picture taken by @OmarAlmoktar on August 10th.

Najib and his brother Ibrahim.

Picture taken by @wheelertweets on August 12th.

Najib when he first arrived in Tunis.



This is 19 year old Mohamed, from Misurata.

The explosion of a mortar shell near him led to the fracture and distortion of his legs and feet…

… and the loss of vision in one eye.

After the last surgery he slowly began to walk his first steps.

This is Moe, back home, playing his guitar, before the war.


Meet Ali



“Meet Ali,  Misrata freedom fighter hit by Gaddafi Grad. Both legs amputated.

Ali said the Grad exploded at his feet and the blast threw him 10 meters away. One of his comrades was literally cut in half.

Ali was hit by that Grad on May 13. Then, due to the seige, he waited 27 days to get out of Misrata.
In Ali’s group of 30 Freedom Fighters, 3 died & 7 injured from that Grad. He said their weapons range was only 5km max vs 40 for Gaddafi forces.

Ali came from Misrata on a small fishing boat. It was fast but bounced a lot. During his 1st 5 days in Tunisia, Ali was treated for further damage suffered in the voyage from Misrata, not for direct injuries from the Grad.

Misrata was out of anesthetics when a chunk of flesh was removed near his waist. Ali showed me how he bit a towel & clenched. On the parts of Ali’s body that remain, it looks like he was hit by a meteor shower. 100 pieces of shrapnel from the Grad.
Ali said he’d been quiet & introspective before I came by. But as you can see, he became energized as we visited. July 14.

Ali said he’d gladly give the rest of his body for Libya and his beloved city, Misrata. He radiates a noble passion.

Visiting with Ali was a joy, but I couldn’t help weeping. He took my head in his hands, kissed it, and told me not to cry.”

Via James Wheeler (@wheelertweets)










 James and Ali in Tunis.

July 14th, 2011. 



Ahmed and Suleiman

These are the brothers Suleiman (on wheelchair) and Ahmed Algtani from Ajdabiya, Libya. Both are now in a hospital in Tunisia.
On June 19, 14 years old Ahmed was at home in bed playing with part of a cluster bomb that he had found on the street and had hidden from parents.
It exploded in his hands.

(Ahmed shortly after he arrived in Tunis)

Ahmed had his left hand amputated. Part of his right hand was also severely affected. Both thighs and groin injuries were serious.

Ahmed on July 18, his wounds are healing well, bandages removed.


This is 11 year old Suleiman, Ahmed’s brother. Shrapnel from the bomb hit him on the shoulder and mid back.
Suleiman was getting up to use the bathroom when the explosion occurred. The fragment that Ahmed had found exploded around midnight  on June 19. He and his brother went to the hospital in Ajdabiya and immediately transferred to Benghazi.The shrapnel in his column is still there. Doctors say that removing it would be worse. A little bit of movement is gradually returning to his legs. Chances are he will walk again.On June 22, they flew to Tunis with their mother and older brother. Suleiman gave his uncle and I a hard time but we finally extracted a weak smile from him. It was heartbreaking. Suleiman is in pain. Physical and mental.  These two boys deserve your affection. ”

via James Wheeler (@ wheelertweets)
update: 6 august, 2011