U.S. Marines of the 28th Regiment, 5th Division, raise the American flag atop Mt. Suribachi, Iwo Jima, on Feb. 23, 1945.
Joe Rosenthal—AP
By TIME Video
March 22, 2014

When AP photographer Joe Rosenthal watched marines hoisting the flag on Iwo Jima in 1945, he wasn’t sure he got the shot. It turned out to be one of the most famous photographs from WWII.

In the video above, Hal Buell, former photo editor of the Associated Press, narrates the history and significance of what Rosenthal captured in the image. The battle ended 69 years ago this week.

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