More on U.S. Killing Journalists

I posted something a couple of days ago in which I said I was very disappointed to see so little coverge of the U.S. killing journalists like Mazen Dana in the blogosphere. Yesterday, the Boston Globe had a pretty fierce editorial, A cameraman killed, which I'll excerpt (emphasis mine):

WITH AMERICAN soldiers being killed almost daily in Iraq, nervousness among the occupying forces is understandable. But there is no excuse for US troops gunning down a TV cameraman doing his job, as happened to a prize-winning Reuters newsman on Sunday.

Despite the fact that Mazen Dana, 43, a father of four, had received permission from a US military official to film on the site, where other newsmen were also working, soldiers on two approaching tanks thought he might be an Iraqi guerrilla and his camera a rocket-propelled grenade launcher, according to reports. They shot first and attempted resuscitation later, unsuccessfully.

Eighteen journalists have died in Iraq from hostile fire and accidents. Five have been killed by the US military.


It is only natural that such organizations -- and newspaper editorials -- react with outrage when colleagues are killed on the job. But these killings raise a broader question of whether the coalition rules of engagement are too aggressive with all civilians. Reports of excessive force against Iraqis mount: US soldiers even killed two Iraqi policemen they mistook for criminals recently. Such actions inflame local passions, making it all the harder for occupying forces to keep the peace.

There is also a Salon article -- worth watching a free ad to read -- on how some journalists feel they are being targeted deliberately.

"From the eyewitness accounts, it appears that Dana was fired on without warning," wrote the Committee to Protect Journalists in an open letter to Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld. "He was filming in an area where no hostilities were taking place, raising questions about whether U.S. troops acted recklessly in targeting him."

About this Entry

Published on August 21, 2003 4:41 PM.

previous entry: Blackout photos

next entry: If you don't have Tivo yet...



3 latest

3 random