Thursday, November 16, 2006

Journalism 002

Yesterday, Dexter Filkins of the New York Times spoke at Boston University about his experience as a journalist in Iraq for the past three and a half years. War journalists are a different breed of person, able to ensconce themselves in strife indefinitely and leave thoughts like, "maybe I'll get shot today" back in their bed as they chase story after story in a land whose language and culture is almost always completely foreign to them.

When someone asked Filkins, "What makes it all worth it for you?", he replied, "I don't know that it is. Maybe it's like Churchhill said, '
There's nothing quite so thrilling in life as to be shot at without result.'"

While in Iraq, Filkins lived in the New York Times' "fortress" of a compound, which has 45 armed guards, mounted 50 cal. machine guns on the roof, 3 armored cars (worth $1 mil) at their disposal and of course some barbed wire.

Filkins said that there doesn't appear to be any real leadership to the insurgency, or if there is, then it's horribly unclear who it is. "Everyone's just going around and causing as much mayhem as possible."

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