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John Lee Anderson: American bada$$

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Dick Whitman, May 9, 2011.

  1. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    The most recent New Yorker (the pre-bin Laden death one, actually) has a piece from Middle East correspondent John Lee Anderson about the situation in Libya. You can read it here if you have a couple hours.


    He is seriously the Jack Bauer of journalism.

    One passage:

    More fighters showed up, and some onlookers, too, until there were perhaps forty vehicles pulled up in front of the gate - the entirety fo the force defending Al Uqaylah. Then a screaming din came, as a jet fighter dived in and out of the opaque sky and dropped a bomb about a hundred feet away, near the gate and a guard post next to it. there was a huge explosion, and rocks and dirt landed everywhere, but no one had been hurt. Everyone began getting in their cars and, amid panicked shouting, raced away. It seemed likely that there was no rebel front line anymore, and no real deterrent to Qaddafi's forces.

    And this:

    By the time the men had finished praying, the shells were exploding much closer. The men streamed onto the road and went to their gun positions, shouting 'Allahu akbar,' 'God is great.' There was a tumult as fighters surged toward Qaddafi's artillery and began firing back with rockets and guns. Then the shells came slamming around us and everyone rushed to escape.

    And this, my favorite moment of all:

    The next morning, I headed out from Brega to see how far Qaddafi's men had advanced. A rebel sentry with a blackened face told me to go only as far as Al Uqaylah, twenty-five miles to the west: 'It's not safe past there.' I found the front line about a mile beyond Al Uqaylah.

    A few weeks ago, he wrote a story where he recounted a meeting with some vicious Middle East/North African warlord, sitting in a tent sharing a conversation with him in the middle of the jungle while a female prisoner begged for her life.

    The guy is going to get killed on assignment at some point, and I'm truly not convinced that he cares about that one iota.
  2. Boom_70

    Boom_70 Well-Known Member

    The guy is the best. Last 3 New Yorkers piled up, all with at least 6 hours worth of reading. Need to lock myself in my office and catch up.
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