It sounds like a tough and life-altering job, going behind the scenes of a war and reporting from the front line. Michael Ware did it in Iraq and Afghanistan continuously for six years, including four with CNN, and it sounds like he hasn’t been able to shake the experience that could have led to his post-traumatic stress disorder.
According to the Brisbane Times, Ware was in an Iraqi village in 2007 when a young boy with a gun walked up to the home he and the soldiers protecting him were staying. One of the soldiers shot the boy, but the kid struggled for 20 minutes, before passing away.
But in describing the incident, you get a sense of Ware’s mental state, because he treated the event with such detachment and “indifference.” It also might be a necessary tool when covering the front lines. He said he was “more concerned with the composition” of the photo that the cameraman took than with trying to help the kid.
“I indeed had been indifferent as the soldiers around me whose indifference I was attempting to capture,” said Ware.
CNN never aired the footage because it was too graphic. But Ware, who received praise for his in-depth reporting of the war and is now on leave from CNN, seems like he hasn’t recovered. A sad story for a part of the media world few people would ever enter.