“The Number of Iraqi Journalists Who Have Died In The Past Year Is Staggering”

By Brian 

A couple e-mailers have asked: Where is CNN’s Michael Ware? He hasn’t been live in Baghdad recently. Ware is back in the states, taking a little break before he heads back, and he appeared on Friday’s American Morning to talk about the war. Anchor Miles O’Brien asked Ware to give viewers a sense of how he does his job while trying to stay safe.

“It’s extremely difficult,” Ware said. “If you’re not embedded with the U.S. military, which by and large, we don’t do quite so often because that only gives you one little aspect of the story — the story is much broader. Journalists live in heavily fortified compounds. Basically you have to be ready to defend yourself from car bombs, from attack, and from mortar and missile fire. Traveling around the city is extremely difficult. We have to be careful about what we say and don’t say to give too much away.”

O’Brien cut in: “It must be very frustrating as a reporter though not to be able to grab your notebook, go out–“

“Extremely so,” Ware responded. “You can do it in very limited circumstances. Essentially you need to get the permission of whichever militia or organization is in control of an area. We send out Iraqis, but honestly, they’re being killed in the droves. They’re really on the journalistic front line. The number of Iraqi journalists who have died in the past year is staggering.”