Friday, December 19, 2003
I just finished reading "Embedded - The Media at War in Iraq", a collection of sixty interviews with Iraq War II correspondents and reporters compiled by Bill Katovsky and Timothy Carlson (I hope there will be further volumes since there were over 600 embeds). One of the interviews that really struck me was with U.S. Army Colonel Guy Shields, a Public Affairs Officer who worked out of Kuwait in late April of 2003. A key scene in my play deals with the incident that occured at the Palestine Hotel in Baghdad, one day before Saddam's statue was toppled, when a US tank shelled the tallest building on the skyline, unequivocally murdering two unilaterals. Mr. Shields had this to say: "Some journalists insinuated that we were trying to kill journalists...Well, maybe the journalists who were staying in the Palestine decided to embed on the wrong side. They were knowingly living and working with the Iraqi military in Baghdad. All those media had uniformed minders until Saddam's statue came down." Scary stuff.