Dispatches from Baghdad
The FRONTLINE/World "Reporting the War" television
story featured several journalists who report from Iraq.
Catch up with their recent work in American and British
The work of John Burns and Dexter Filkins is available
by searching The
New York Times. (Registration required.)
Reporting by Jackie Spinner is available by searching
Washington Post. (Registration required.)
Articles by Rory McCarthy are available by searching
the UK Guardian.
Scott Peterson's articles are available by searching
Christian Science Monitor for "Scott Peterson"
and "Iraq." His photographs are available at Getty
Images by searching for "Scott Peterson" and "Iraq."
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Journalists in the News
Journalists Freed in Iraq"
In August 2004, a radical Islamic group kidnapped two
French journalists in Iraq while they were on their way
to report a story in the holy city of Najaf. The journalists
were released by their captors in December 2004.
and Surviving Iraq's Dangers"
This commentary by Ian Fisher, first published by The
New York Times in July 2004, responds to the suggestion
by the U.S. deputy secretary of defense, Paul Wolfowitz,
that reporters were too frightened to properly cover the
war in Iraq. Fisher refers to reporting from Iraq as an
"experiment in war journalism."
Baghdad, April 17, 2003
Just before the fall of Baghdad, John Burns was threatened
by top officials in Saddam Hussein's regime, who accused
him of working for the CIA. He discussed the experience
with Margaret Warner on PBS's NewsHour.
In October 2004, Terence Smith of PBS's NewsHour
spoke with Brian Rooney of ABC News, Rajiv Chandrasekaran
of The Washington Post and Brian Bennett of Time
magazine about the dangers and challenges of reporting
the Press and the Election"
This commentary in The New York Review of Books,
published in December 2004, analyzes how coverage of Iraq
by major news outlets and the escalating danger that journalists
faced in Iraq affected the 2004 U.S. presidential election.
As reporters risked their lives to cover stories in Iraq,
major media outlets -- normally competitors -- shared
resources in an attempt to keep their employees safe.
In April 2004, The NewsHour's Terence Smith spoke
with John Burns, Baghdad bureau chief of The New York
Times, and Eason Jordan, chief news executive of CNN,
about the shift from competition to cooperation among
news agencies in Iraq.
Reporter Killed, Two Other Journalists Wounded in Baghdad"
Television reporter Mazen al-Temeizi was taping a report
when U.S. helicopters opened fire on Haifa Street in Baghdad
in September 2004. He screamed on camera and died moments
later. Two other journalists were wounded. This article
from the Committee to Protect Journalists recounts the
Mazen Dana Killed in Iraq"
Mazen Dana, a Palestinian cameraman featured in the FRONTLINE/World
story "In the Line of Fire," was killed in Iraq on August
17, 2003 when U.S. soldiers reportedly mistook his camera
for a grenade launcher.
As Targets Covering War in Iraq"
On NPR News, Hannah Allam, Baghdad bureau chief
for the Knight Ridder News Service, reflects on how reporting
from Iraq shifted from thrilling to terrifying as the
insurgents gained firepower.
From Farnaz Fassihi
In September 2004, Wall Street Journal reporter
Farnaz Fassihi sent a private -- and very candid -- email
to friends, describing in terrifying detail the dangers
she faced as a journalist in Iraq. Her honesty and blunt
criticism of the war skyrocketed the email across the
Internet, and it became a prominent news item in and of
Safety Is Top Priority"
This article covers the "safety industry" that has sprung
up around journalists' reporting from war zones. Counseling
and hazardous environment courses are offered to staff
reporters and freelancers.
Year in 10 for Media"
Most journalists who have died in Iraq thus far were Iraqis
working for U.S. organizations. This article from December
2004 covers the year's other hot spots for reporters around
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Press Freedom Organizations
to Protect Journalists
The Committee to Protect Journalists has documented and
protested abusive treatment of journalists since 1981.
Its Web site includes a list of journalists killed during
the past 10 years, a feature on the jump in 2004 of the
number of journalists killed, a list of the journalists
killed in 2004 and cases of attacks on journalists around
the world, listed by country.
The British group Article 19 takes its name from the article
of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights that protects
free expression and access to official information. Its
Web site includes a handbook on press freedom and censorship,
with documents on print media, film and the Internet.
Journalists aren't the only media professionals who get
in trouble for their work. The Cartoonists Rights Network
keeps track of editorial cartoonists who have been censored
or punished for poking fun at the powerful. This Web site
features short profiles of cartoonists as well as some
of the "irreverent" cartoons that criticize the status
quo in such countries as Nigeria, Turkey, Egypt, Cameroon
and Sri Lanka.
The Freedom Forum promotes First Amendment rights and
ethnic diversity in American newsrooms. Its online Newseum
offers up exhibits on major stories of the past century,
including commentary of war correspondents who covered
World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, Central
America, Africa, the Balkans, the Middle East and the
This quarterly British magazine publishes a regularly
updated list of free speech violations occurring in more
than 70 countries. Its Web site features current news
and analysis of international press restrictions. Commentary
direct from Baghdad covers how U.S. occupying forces control
the fledgling independent Iraqi press.
Federation of Journalists
The International Federation of Journalists is the world's
largest organization of journalists, with 450,000 members
in more than 100 countries. The group supports journalists
who wish to organize independent trade unions and provides
aid to journalists in need.
The International Press Institute, based in Vienna, has
opposed infringements on press freedoms for more than
50 years. It publishes an annual report, "World Press
Freedom Review," that covers media freedom around the
world. In 2003, it produced "Caught in the Crossfire:
The Iraq War and the Media," a report on press freedom
violations in Iraq.
This French press watchdog organization keeps track of
those who attempt to silence independent journalists.
The group's trilingual Web site -- English, French and
Spanish -- includes reports on the current state of press
freedom in every country and a list of currently imprisoned
journalists. A world map color-codes freedom of the press
worldwide. The United States' rank is "satisfactory."
Each year on May 3, the United Nations Educational, Scientific
and Cultural Organization commemorates World Press Freedom
Day. Established in 1991, the day is meant to remind governments
and citizens around the world of the importance of a free,
independent press. The 2002 World Press Freedom Day conference
featured a video interview with Marianne Pearl, widow
of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl.
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Remembering Slain Journalists
Sans Frontiéres -- 2004 Annual Report
This report includes brief descriptions of how 12 journalists
and two media assistants were killed in Iraq in 2004 as
well as information on missing, wounded, kidnapped, imprisoned,
arrested, attacked and harassed journalists.
to Protect Journalists: Journalists Killed in 2004
Twenty-three in Iraq. Three in Bangladesh. Two in Russia.
Eight in the Philippines. Two in Nicaragua. This document
lists all of the journalists who were killed in 2004 because
of their work, including their biographies and how they
This Web site, produced by the Inter American Press Association,
honors Latin American journalists killed for their reporting
on corruption, crime and human rights abuses. It includes
profiles of slain journalists as well as the results of
investigations into their deaths. Featured journalists
include Brazilian television reporter Tim Lopes, killed
in June 2002 while reporting on drug trafficking in Rio
de Janeiro, and Jean Leopold Dominique, a prominent Haitian
radio reporter shot dead outside his station in April
In this harrowing account published in the July 26, 2002,
edition of the Israeli newspaper Ha'aretz, columnist
Gideon Levy describes the fatal shooting in Jenin of Palestinian
freelance journalist Imad Abu Zahra.
of an Irish Heroine
In June 1996, investigative reporter Veronica Guerin was
shot and killed in Dublin. Guerin, who had made a name
exposing Ireland's criminal underworld, had been shot
and assaulted on previous occasions in retaliation for
her investigations. In March 2002, the conviction of the
man sentenced to life in prison for murdering Guerin was
overturned. In this profile, a BBC correspondent pays
tribute to Guerin.
Daniel Pearl Foundation
During his career at The Wall Street Journal, journalist
Daniel Pearl gained a reputation for brilliant reporting
and original writing. The foundation established in his
honor remembers his accomplishments and encourages journalists,
writers and musicians to follow in his footsteps. The
Wall Street Journal has put some of Pearl's best
Forum Online Memorial
The Freedom Forum maintains an online memorial for journalists
and photographers killed on the job over the course of
nearly two centuries. The list starts with James Lingan,
who was stomped to death in Baltimore in 1812 by an angry
mob upset by his reporting about local politicians. The
site also lists the dead by name, country of origin, employer
and country of death.
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Keeping Journalists Safe
During the Vietnam War, American journalists had almost
unfettered access to the action on the ground. That changed
during the Gulf War, when the Pentagon announced strict
new rules for reporters following U.S. troops on the battlefield.
This PBS NewsHour segment from December 2002 looks
at how the Pentagon and the press negotiated their often
tense relationship as the war in Iraq was approaching.
Days in Colombia
In January 2003, right-wing paramilitaries in a remote
part of Colombia kidnapped American freelance journalist
Robert Young Pelton and two companions. After 10 days,
the three were released unharmed. (Around the same time,
leftist rebels kidnapped and released two British journalists
who were working for the Los Angeles Times.) Pelton
recounts his experience in this interview with National
Geographic. Asked how others might prepare for traveling
in the area where he was seized, Pelton advises, "[Y]ou
have to have a group of armed men with you."
The International News Safety Institute (INSI) is a coalition
of news agencies, press freedom groups, unions and humanitarian
agencies working together to create safe environments
for journalists. Its Web site posts safety guidelines
for journalists on assignment, including tips such as
this: "Carry cigarettes and other giveaways as sweeteners.
Stay calm and try to appear relaxed if troops or locals
to Bring Into the Field
In this excerpt from his book Pen and Sword: A Journalist's
Guide to Covering the Military, Ed Offley provides
some packing tips for journalists planning to head to
a war zone. Sturdy, comfortable clothing is a must --
as long as it's not in camouflage design.
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Journalists in Danger
Dangerous reporting, politics and ethics collide in many
of these movies -- both feature films and documentaries
-- highlighting the risks that journalists take to defend
freedom of the press.
This documentary from 2004 profiles reporters for Al-Jazeera
-- the Arab world's equivalent of CNN -- and poses important
questions about access to information and what qualifies
This feature film is based on the real-life experiences
of Ed Horman, a politically conservative father from the
United States who searched for his son, a journalist who
went missing while covering a coup in Chile.
CNN was the only news organization to broadcast live,
firsthand reports during the Gulf War. This film illustrates
the tenacity of reporters who stayed in Baghdad when the
bombs started to fall.
This feature film is based on the true story of Irish
reporter Veronica Guerin, who spent 18 months investigating
Dublin's drug trade. She was assassinated in 1996.
This Oscar-winning feature film tells the story of two
journalists -- American New York Times reporter Sydney
Schanberg and Cambodian reporter Dith Pran -- who attempted
to cover the Cambodian civil war and the advance of the
Based on the Graham Greene novel of the same name, this
film tells the story of a British journalist covering
Vietnam in the 1950s. The first version of the film was
made in 1958, and the second
Year of Living Dangerously
A rookie foreign correspondent winds up covering an anti-Communist
coup in Indonesia in the 1960s in this feature film.
The dramatized story of John Reed, a leftist American
journalist who covered Russia's October Revolution in
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