Dying to Tell the Story
Aired July 13, 2002 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
AARON BROWN, HOST: Welcome to CNN PRESENTS. I'm Aaron Brown.
Since September 11, countless numbers of journalists have been deployed around the world to cover the war on terror. At one time hundreds descended on Afghanistan alone, all working amid a backdrop of conflict and violence and murder.
In just 16 days last November, eight reporters were killed in Afghanistan, and this year the kidnapping and the murder of Daniel Pearl reminded us all again of how dangerous and unpredictable reporting on a war can be.
So what drives those who rush into harm's way armed only with a notebook or a camera or a videophone? It is that very question that filmmaker Amy Eldon in 1998, as she explored the life and death of her brother Dan.
Dan died in '93 while on assignment as a photographer in Somalia.
So now CNN PRESENTS: "Dying to Tell the Story."
DAN ELDON, VOICE DRAMATIZATION: A photographer in danger zones needs to be a detective, a con man and a master of escape.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The way to start in this business is to a one-way ticket to hell, and stay there long enough to tell the story. A still photographer or a cameraman, has to be there. And you've got to be really close to what's happening; you've got to be really close to the pictures. And because it's so intimate, it's also very dangerous.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There's no way you can hide behind the camera, because you're looking through it. And somehow, when you look through the camera, you feel even closer to the person you're photographing.
CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CNN CHIEF INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It's profession, it's a mission, it's public service, it's commitment, it's sacrifice.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're licensed idiots. We go out and stand out in the line of fire and are living there.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: IF there's no picture, there's no story. You might as well not have been there.
AMY ELDON, NARRATOR (voice-over): They call them conflict zones. In the past 10 years a journalist has been killed in one nearly every week. My brother Dan Eldon was one of those journalists. He was killed while covering the conflict in Somalia. He was only 22 years old.
Now I am 23, a year old than my big brother was when he died. Like so many other photographers, correspondents and camera people, Dan risked his life to bring us images of the human cost of war. He took pictures in Somalia because he felt the world needed to know what was happening there.
Since Dan's death, I've had many questions. I want to meet other journalists and ask them what I can no longer ask my brother. I need to see the place where was Dan was killed. But before I can face Somalia, I want to understand what motivated Dan to do the work he did and what motivates journalists around the world who are literally dying to tell a story.
D. ELDON, VOICE DRAMATIZATION: There is never a shortage countries ravished on violent conflict. I recently spent a month in Somalia and have learned some valuable lessons by making many foolish mistakes and learning the hard way.
A. ELDON: Dan left behind 17 journals, bulging with pictures, artwork, clippings, and writings. His journals have answered some of my questions about the work he did. And I never saw him as a professional war photographer in action. There is more about my brother's work I want to know.
After Dan died, I left college for a while, feeling empty and confused. Now four years later, I still don't feel at peace. I've realized that the only to satisfy my need for more information about Dan and his work is to go off in search of it. I hope that going to Somalia will give me some answers.
But before I get there, I want to talk to journalists around the world, some who knew Dan and some know of him, to see if they can help me learn about my brothers life and work.
London is home base for many of the photographers, correspondents, and camera people who cover war zones. Some of them have agreed to talk to me and tell me what they can about Dan and about their profession.
(on camera): Did you ever meet Dan?
DES WRIGHT: Yes, I worked him. Yes, he kept on stealing my cell phone.
A. ELDON: For Dan, it was his first war. And for you guys, you've been through quite a few now. I mean, in comparison, was that pretty awful or was it just because it was his first war?
CARLOS MAVROLEON: He felt more at home on the streets, I think in Somalia than I did, more than anyone. I think Somalia, out of all the places that I've been to, is probably the worst.
There was a really, really hostile environment in which to work. And there was palpable anger and tension and fear as you walked on their streets and a hatred that was just startling.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you think this is the sort of situation you're going to face when you get to Somalia?
A. ELDON: I have no idea. I mean, I hope not.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't think Somalia is ever going to be safe.
A. ELDON: See, the Marines have gone. We don't hear anything. So...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It wasn't because the Marines were there that you were hearing stuff. It was because we were there.
MAVROLEON: I doesn't think there's a single story I've covered that hasn't given me an immense sense, an almost transcendental sense of bliss and joy from just being in the perfect place at the perfect time for the perfect moment.
Covering a war is just like fighting a war. It's a 90 percent sitting around, 7.5 percent desperate preparation, for 2.5 percent of intense, intense activity. When it happens, it happens with explosive speed. It happens so quickly. If you're not ready and on the spot, you're going to miss it. And you can't get an action replay. You don't get a second take on reality.
WRIGHT: There's a stigma attached to agency cameraman via these young cowboys running around who loved to get shot. When I go to Afghanistan or when Carlos goes wherever, the last thing that I want to do is come back with, you know, one limb less than I went with. That's furthest from my mind. And my safety is the number one priority.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Dan was younger, a little bit younger than you guys. And again, it was his first war. But when he was there, I think he was using his camera as a protection. He was a bit detached because he's like, "OK, I got to get the light right, you know, is this framed OK?."
And then when he'd come home and look at these pictures, you know, I'd sit and get his contact sheets back. And he was sickened by what he'd been seeing.
MAVROLEON: Part of the frustration this job is there in a situation which is crying out for doctors, crying out for logistical assistance, crying out for food, for blankets, clothing, warmth, heat. And all you're there is with a camera, which doesn't really feel anybody. And you're trying to explain to people who are desperate and who are starving that they're going to be on the news tonight. It doesn't work. And it doesn't work for you as well. It makes you feel like something less than a human being. It makes you feel like a vulture.
I moved into this apartment because I was desperately in love with somebody. I wanted to show her that we were going to have a life together, that we were going to move into a place that was going to be for the two of us. And she could not deal with the fact that I was running out of the door in a moment's notice to go after the most dangerous places on the world. And that for the entire time I was away, she was in total fear about what was going to happen. And that was very, very destructive to the relationship.
I think the thing that was even more destructive to the relationship was the fact that when I left for the airport with a wad of cash in my hand, and an airplane ticket to hell, I left with a smile on my face.
D. ELDON, VOICE DRAMATIZATION: The truth is that once one has been to these challenging, terrible places, they're always strangely drawn back, because there is nothing that can compare to the raw reality of seeing the basic human fight for survival. It disgusts and inspires.
D. ELDON, VOICE DRAMATIZATION: The combination of long periods of waiting, intermixed with moments of intense drama and fear, is the nerve-grating reality of being around a war zone.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
D. ELDON: I always travel with my personal media crew.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
A. ELDON (voice-over): When Dan went to Somalia as a Reuters photographer to cover the war and the famine there, he'd had no formal training either in photography or in what he called "how not to get your head shot off." Dan only lived long enough to cover one war.
Martin Bell has covered 11 wars. He is one of Britain's most well respected war correspondents and a self-described war zone thug.
MARTIN BELL, BBC REPORTER: If you excuse me, I just want to break off because we've had some incoming sniper fire, and I don't want to endanger the crew right here.
A. ELDON: What did he learn from all those years in the field? And more importantly, how did he manage to survive?
BELL: This is Martin Bell with 7th Armored Brigade for the British Television News Pool.
A. ELDON (on camera): Hi, Mr. Bell, nice see you.
BELL: Come into my very, very peaceful abode.
A. ELDON: Thanks very much. Last time I saw you, you were still a correspondent.
BELL: I changed. Have a seat. It changed. It changed. I had a new -- started a new life, which I have to say, is not as dangerous as the old one, but it's harder work.
I don't have enormous amount of nostalgia. I don't miss it. I never enjoyed being shot at. I never enjoyed being in danger. The only thing I would confess to is what Winston Churchill, who was an early master of our craft, described as the exhilaration of being shot at without result.
The art of being a war reporter actually very much to negotiate access for the camera past roadblocks and to win yourself into the confidence of warlords. The name of the game is access. Once you've got to the frontline, it's actually fairly easy. I mean, any idiot can describe a firefight, because it more or less describes itself.
What is different about Bosnia, most of all, was we were so close to it. And we were alongside daily so many innocent, suffering people, that we felt obliged to try to help them in some way. That's what was different about it.
Without any warning, and on a previously quiet day, a number of shells fell on the city. One of them exploded in the main street close to the scene of the marketplace massacre of February last year. The result was the great of the carnage in Sarajevo since then.
I didn't have a political intention. I wasn't consciously trying to change the non-policy of my government, but I did hope that just showing these pictures in my country would have an effect. Eventually people would say this is unconscionable what we're not doing.
I believe in fairness and partiality. I'm not sure about objectivity. I don't know what it means, because there's nothing object-like in the relationship between the reporter and event, but not to stand neutral between good and evil. Not to say when somebody is shot beside you, well, I'm a journalist, I'm not going to help this person. Not when the war crimes tribunal comes to you, looking for evidence saying I'm a journalist, that's none of my business.
The journalism of attachment is about all these things. You're not apart from the world of war. We are a part of it. And we affect it. And we have to know that we affect it. And what we do has consequences, which can be for good or for ill. And we have to know that, too.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Martin Bell was hard at work, as usual, first thing this morning. This is his 11th war, and the most dangerous. This morning, Bell was at a notorious snipers' corner filming civilians under machine gun and shell fire. A mortar bomb exploded close by and shrapnel hit him in the stomach and groin. Shells continued to fall as his colleagues came to his aid.
BELL: Here, here.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK.
BELL: OK, I'll survive. I'm alive.
There was my five minutes of fame, you know. People as if it sound kind of heroic to be wounded. It's just daft. I mean, I didn't have to be wounded. It was my fault. And I felt rather ashamed, because I got out of there so fast. I had an armored vehicle to take me to the U.N. field hospital straight by air ambulance to London.
The trapped victims in Sarajevo did not have these advantages. I was kept out of the war zone for three months, and it was too long. So I was naturally cautious when I went back. I was then not taking risks I should have taken. Sometimes you reproach yourself for being crazy, and sometimes you reproach yourself for being a coward. But whatever you do as a war reporter, you're going to have a life full of reproach, self-reproach, you see.
A lot of people who get killed, get killed very young. Maybe they're too enthusiastic. Maybe they don't assess the risks that -- we all believe we're not going to be killed, but probably the belief is more securely lodged in the mind of somebody very young. The other people who get (UNINTELLIGIBLE) are simply those who play the odds too long, you see.
If you do it year after year, I mean, sooner or later, there's a piece of lead with your name on it, I think.
OK, I'll survive.
D. ELDON, VOICE DRAMATIZATION: When I do get spotted taking a picture, the most important challenge is not to show fear. I try to look confused or pretend that I don't understand a thing that is going on. But to get flustered is a recipe for disaster. If people find your weakness, they will toy with you, like a cat with a mouse.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
D. ELDON: There's a new sheriff in town. I'm going to clean up this place.
(END VIDEO CLIP) A. ELDON (voice-over): Christiane Amanpour has a reputation for being as fearless as they come. She has a passion for her work and never seems to doubt its value. But does she ever feel afraid or has she simply learned to control it?
AMANPOUR: I started at the bottom, completely at the bottom, They said, "Oh, you're foreign. Go on the foreign desk."
This comes from the Pentagon, their command center. And they track me, apparently. I think it's a joke, frankly, but it's sweet, isn't it?
A. ELDON (on camera): I don't know about that.
AMANPOUR: And they track me where I am. And a lot of places I go, some of the American military say, "We always wait to see where you're going because we know we're going to be there shortly afterwards."
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Wherever there's a war, there's Amanpour, right?
AMANPOUR: That kind of thing, yes.
I'm Christiane Amanpour reporting live from Mogadishu. We believe that we have seen the first Navy Seals land ashore.
Just earlier, we showed you the admission...
There's also a lot of civilian damage. Let me try to give you some detail that may try to put a human face of some of what's going on.
The real story of what's happening here is still to be told.
There's another launch.
Christiane Amanpour, CNN, Sarajevo.
I'm Christiane Amanpour reporting live from Mogadishu.
I think I'm proud mostly of what I've done in Bosnia. I believe that we journalists did our duty. We went there, we stayed for years, and did what we are mandated to do. We told the story.
A. ELDON: I mean, you said that, you know, you couldn't be neutral in Bosnia. And -- you know, Martin Bell had talked to me about his journalism of attachment, where he's inspiring people to care.
What -- how would you describe yours?
AMANPOUR: Well, I am a great friend and colleague of Martin Bell's, but I don't call it journalism of attachment, because I actually don't believe that that's what it is or that's what we should be doing. But what I do think is that we have to understand the principles of our profession. So in this case, everybody sort of glommed on to the idea of objectivity. And they say, Christiane has perhaps lost her objectivity. She's identifying with one side.
And I said to them, "No. Understand what does objectivity mean? It means giving all sides an equal hearing. It means seeking all sides of the story. But it does not mean treating all sides the same.
Sometimes it's appropriate to be detached. And sometimes it's highly inappropriate. And I again mention Bosnia, where our responsibility as human beings was on the line and where morality entered the equation.
We were faced with a situation in which genocide was being perpetrated in Europe, 50 years after World War II or our government said never again. And it was happening again.
This is a routine Saturday in central Sarajevo. Bosnian gunmen defend against Serb snipers 100 yards away, across the front line. Several passersby have been hit. At least one is dead.
When they called us computer bombardiers, laptop bombardiers, you know, that we the journalists were trying to encourage intervention, they said it could never be done. And of course, it was.
September 1995, in two weeks the Allies stopped the war. We were right.
You are inevitably touched by what you see and sometimes horrified and revolted and terrified. But you have to know how to deal with it. And the way I deal with it is not to shut down and to fall apart, but to put that energy of horror into telling the story. And that's the only thing I can do.
This monument commemorates the soldiers who died during World War II. On this day, journalists who have died covering this war are remembered. According to the figures, more journalists have been killed or wounded covering the three-year conflict in the former Yugoslavia than in any war over the same period of time.
As much as I talk about the bright side and the optimistic side, I can't help but feel moved for you. And I know that you probably sit here and you think, what is the reason, why do these people do it, why did my brother have to die? There's no real answer that will ever satisfy you. It's just that there are certain people who have to do a certain thing. And it's very difficult to explain.
A. ELDON: Yes.
AMANPOUR: And you just have to believe that he did what he did because he believes in it, and there was no stopping him. And you know, people think we're mad and there's no explaining to those who don't want to understand, but he did an important thing.
A. ELDON: Thank you. (END VIDEOTAPE)
D. ELDON, VOICE DRAMATIZATION: After my first trip to Somalia, the terror of being surrounded by violence and the horrors of the famine threw me into a dark depression. Even journalists who had covered many conflicts were moved to tears. But for me, this was my first experience with war.
Before Somalia, I'd only seen two dead bodies in my life. I've now seen hundreds, tossed into ditches like sacks. The worst things I could not photograph.
A. ELDON (voice-over): When Dan would come home from one of his assignments in Somalia, he would go through a very dark period, trying to come to terms with what he had seen. He hated the horrors he had witnessed. And yet, he was always drawn back for more.
Like so many photographers, Dan couldn't forget the images he had captured on film. Don McCullin is one of the greatest war photographers of all-time. But to this day, he carries physical and emotional scars that he says will never heal.
DON MCCULLIN, PHOTOGRAPHER: In my photographs, I get so close that you can almost embrace the stench of death. You can almost be drenched by the tears of some of the victims. They're almost beating upon you to hear them, to see them, to feel them. So therefore, if I'm know Robert Cape, at least I listen to his words. And I got close. I got so close that I hope that people, when they look at my photographs, they feel there, that they're there.
I've known nothing but war for the first 35 years of my life. You know, we've war and bombing in England. And so, going to Vietnam and places like that, it was an extension for me, of what I already knew.
I carried this soldier when I took this photograph. I put my cameras down and I ran him away from the battle. He's just been hit by a sniper. And these three pictures are all the same moment, where the sniper was just killing one soldier after another and I was lying there. And I was literally eating the earth because I was afraid to put my head up as I was just watching men die.
I try to show things as hard as they are, as real as they are.
In this picture, this albino boy, it really hurts people. It really has almost an offensive presence to them, but I don't mind. I think that boy is undoubtedly probably not alive now. And he's clutching an old French cold beef tin. And I went into the camp and I saw 800 children in that condition. And I was absolutely kind of whacked out. I thought, how am I going to get through this, you know.
I tried not to look at that boy because he kept focusing on me. And then I took -- I thought, well, all right, let's get away this boy because I can't handle this. It was too much for me. So I was standing, looking at some other children. Suddenly, somebody touched my hand and I kind of looked down and there was that boy touching my hand.
And I thought, my God, how am I going to handle this? So I gave him my barley sugar. I had a sweet and I gave it to him and he went away. And he stood in the distance licking the sweet and watching me. And every time I print that picture that boy almost talks to me in the developing the time.
A. ELDON (on camera): And so why in the end did you say, "that's it?"
MCCULLIN: Because I went to Beirut. I know it's a well trodden- out story. But there was a huge explosion and an Israeli bomb had collapsed a block of condominiums, as you call them in America. And suddenly they were frantically tearing the rubble with their bare hands to get into this building and get the people out. It was hopeless in a way.
And a woman came around the corner completely hysterical and screaming. And I totally misjudged the day and I put my camera up to my eye and photographed her, and she saw me. And she came tearing towards me like a steam train and started punching me. I had to stand and just take it -- I just took it.
And I walked away and went back to the hotel. I was in the shock of -- not the shock of a beating, because I could handle that. I was in the shock of my own indiscretion; my own bad timing. And I had never made that mistake in my whole life.
A. ELDON: So you felt guilty for...
MCCULLIN: I felt tremendous guilt. And do you know what happened? A man came in and he said, "Hey, you know that woman, she's just been killed." I felt as if my world had caved in. And I went and got myself checked out and I went home to England. And then I -- for several years, I never went to a war -- 10 years, I didn't.
D. ELDON, VOICE DRAMATIZATION: I went straight back to Somalia for the arrival of the Marines, which was very exciting being in the middle of not only a war, but a first rate media circus. It felt like all my years of taking silly pictures and making journals of safaris and trips is beginning to bear fruit.
But being in that place really eats away at the mind. The shattered bodies, the hundreds of walking skeletons really left me changed in a way that I don't even begin to understand myself. I feel like I have to work out who am I and what I like and don't like almost from scratch.
A. ELDON (voice-over): I'm returning to a place that is thick with memories. Kenya is bittersweet for me now. It feels like home, and yet I am constantly reminded here that Dan is no longer with me. I half expect Dan to meet me at the airport. Instead, I have come to sift through what remains of his life here and try to learn more about my brother the photographer than the people who worked with him.
Today is Dan's birthday. He would have been 27. I drove his beloved Land Rover, Desiree, up to Hangong Hills (ph) where we used to play and fought and plan our lives. The same place we threw his ashes into the wind four years ago. Sitting on that circle of rocks, I knew that I would never be apart from him in the ways that truly matter.
D. ELDON, VOICE DRAMATIZATION: I made it to the front page of about six American newspapers, and Reuters even sent me a note from London to congratulate me. It was a shot of a Marine pointing a pistol at a young Somali guy's head. The Marine Task Force distributed food and the death toll came down. The outraged community had taken action and stopped the famine. No one knows when they will leave and what will happen when they do.
A. ELDON: I almost don't want to face Mohamed Shaffi again. I haven't seen him since the memorial for Dan. Today, we will meet in the very same place I last saw him four years ago.
St. Bride's Church in London is dedicated to the memory of journalists who've been killed trying to do their jobs. There have been far too many memorials here, including Dan's.
(on-camera): How are you?
(voice-over): Shaffi is the only journalist who really knows what happened in Somalia that day because is the only one who survived it.
(on-camera): It's good to see you.
MOHAMED SHAFFI: Nice to see you too.
A. ELDON: How are you?
SHAFFI: I'm fine, thanks.
A. ELDON: Good, come sit.
SHAFFI: How are you feeling?
A. ELDON: So you're based here now?
SHAFFI: I'm based in London.
A. ELDON: Yes.
SHAFFI: It's been three years now.
A. ELDON: My goodness.
SHAFFI: It's working, I was going to tell you, yes.
A. ELDON: Oh, that's great. Thank goodness.
SHAFFI: I'm happy here now.
SHAFFI: I had been a cameraman since 1982. I wanted to cover Africa and in Africa, the main, head stories were either famine or war. I felt that there are a lot of innocent people who are trapped in the pockets of civil war and they've got nothing to do with war. They don't understand war. And I felt like my pictures would help them.
The work I was doing was more important than my own family was. Although I missed my family, I had seen my kids not growing up, but I'm still proud today that what I have done in life has saved lives and now, I've got the rest of my life to make up with my children.
A. ELDON: I have so many questions that I didn't ask you because it was too difficult about Somalia because that's where Dan's career took off and that's where he really started to become a man. And you saw his whole progression.
SHAFFI: Dan was very cool. He was not like any of the cameramen, any of the photographers who rushed to a scene and to -- just to capture the shot. He was frightened, also; but he was very, very careful of himself.
He used to hang around with me. And at the end of the day, whatever he used to shoot, he used to show me. He said, "Look, Mohamed," this is what I've got. This is what I've got. And what do you think? Which one should I send to Reuters?"
JONATHAN CLAYTON, FORMER REUTERS BUREAU CHIEF, EAST AFRICA: He was on a very big high at that time because he was getting into the business and taking some good photographs and they were getting published. And he was really sort of driven.
In fact, three or four months later, Dan was basically our photographer in Somalia. What impressed me about Dan was that he wasn't a risk taker. He knew there would be another opportunity the next day or the next month. So although he wanted those photographs and he wanted to be involved in the story, he didn't do rash things.
And even though he was very young, I didn't feel responsible having someone with that little experience and of that age working for us in such a dangerous situation.
It began to get very nasty there in the summer of '93, but Dan was very, very, very entrenched and I think he felt very much at home there. And he used to come out to Nairobi for short periods of rest and then go back.
And unfortunately, just before he died, he said to me that he wanted to come out for a longer period of time. I think it had taken its toll. He wanted to do something else, to be tested in a different way. And so, he said to me, when I phoned him up and asked if he'd go in one last time, he said yes, but he wanted it to be the last time.
A. ELDON (voice-over): After Dan was killed, I didn't want to know too many of the details about his death. I couldn't stand to think of my big brother being afraid in his last moments.
Shaffi would have answered any questions that I had about Dan's death four years ago, but I couldn't bring myself to ask a single one. Now, he's agreed to take me back into Somalia and show me where Dan worked and where he died. Maybe when I get there, I will finally be ready to hear the whole truth.
D. ELDON, VOICE DRAMATIZATION: A man called Dabo Abuka (ph) was killed yesterday. Two young boys died today. What sorrow. Every day on radio in Mogadishu, dozens of incidents like these can be heard. Sad, senseless deaths. In Somalia, the AK-47 had replaced the law. To arrive in Mogadishu for the first time is like falling into hell.
A. ELDON: Finally, I will be able to see for myself this place that had such a hold on Dan. He was so well loved in Somalia that the people there called him The Mayor of Mogadishu.
He blossomed there, and yet it was that place that killed him. I feel anxious because I don't know what I will find on this journey. But I do know that I have to go there.
A. ELDON: What's in there?
A. ELDON: Sahafi. The Sahafi means journalist, right?
SHAFFI: Yes, it does.
A. ELDON: So it used to be wall-to-wall with journalists?
SHAFFI: Yes, we used to be here.
A. ELDON: Yes.
SHAFFI: And that's the road going to the airport. And our -- we were here. I was standing here, exactly here, right off the decor. The house who took bomb is just behind those houses here.
All of this area, it was full of helicopters, you know, Cobras, Black Hawks and fighting from such a short range they were right at the top of the rooftops of the houses. And they were killing anybody on the street.
CLAYTON: And unfortunately, that was the day Danny was going to leave. And Hos was sent in as his replacement. Dan was packed and Hos went to the journalist's hotel to meet Dan. They put their bags down there and then there was report of this house that had been attacked by American helicopter gun troops and reports that a lot of people were killed. And the Americans had killed Mohammed Adi (ph). The warlord was in the house and it appeared that he hadn't been.
And so, a convoy of journalists decided to go up to the house to see really what had happened. And of course, both Hos and Dan went together. Dan didn't have to go. He could have gone down to the airport, but, you know, he worked very closely with Hos and as a settler, he was very keen on the story and he didn't want to miss a big story on his last day.
D. ELDON, VOICE DRAMATIZATION: I am the observer. What would happen if the observer got shot? That would be very bad, but if you take up the responsibility, you sometimes pay the price.
CLAYTON: Because of the danger, they decided it would be better to go en mass in a convoy. And unfortunately, in a way, the Reuters car was one of the first cars in the convoy of fire.
SHAFFI: And the day was clear like -- and hot like today. Here, he went inside -- "Are you afraid?" And I say, yes, I am. I said, why do you ask? Then he kept quiet for a second and then I told him, I said, look, there's nothing to worry about. But if I -- you know, I'm afraid too, but I think if I'm shot, I will be shot with an American bullet and not a Somali bullet.
That really showed that we were -- there was something in us which was, you know, a little bit frightened.
All this area was full of people. And as soon as we came out from here, I was here. I was here and this as journalist had come, everybody got away. I, Dan and Anthony, we all moved in. People were bringing out dead bodies from this house and it was really shocking.
I went and I visit to a 10, 15 second shot of one dead person and then, there was another pick-up. I did another one.
The person who took the first turn out was somewhere about 10, 15 feet, where that small tree is. And he had just picked up the stone from there and he hit the first stone.
Dan was behind me. Dan said, "Let's get out of here." I can still hear his voice up to today. And I said, "Fine." I took the camera off my shoulder and as I said, "Run." They all ran.
As soon as I was done back (ph), that's when I was thrown on the ground, pushed on the ground and I was attacked by the mob.
CLAYTON: The crowd turned the hostile. Some of the other cars realized that, and pulled out. And our car, the Reuters car, backed away. So when Dan came out, the Reuters vehicle was a lot further away than it had been when he'd been dropped there. And as he tried to get to the car, the crowd turned nasty.
D. ELDON, VOICE DRAMATIZATION: The hardest situation to deal with is a frenzied mob, because they cannot be reasoned with. I tried to appeal to one or two of the most sympathetic and restrained looking people with the most effective looking assault rifles. But I've realized that no photograph is worth my life or any other part of my body.
A. ELDON (voice-over): Mohamed Shaffi was shot and severely beaten, but he managed to escape the mob. After he was finally taken to a hospital, he learned that he was the only survivor of the violence. Journalist Anthony Macharia, Hansi Krauss, Hos Maina and my brother were all stoned to death by a Somali mob on July 12, 1993.
SHAFFI: I don't know why this all happened. It was waste of human lives. I feel really sorry and hurt for the Somali elders and children and women who were inside that house who got killed. That was the reason why the locals were so much hurt. And I don't blame them at all, but they were full of anger not only on whites, on all journalists.
I tell you, I do blame the Americans for what they did. But after today, you won't believe the truth is I'm living with it. I can't forget it. The main reason for me to come here is because I can't forget what has happened. Maybe I'm alive today to tell you what has really happened. Maybe that was the reason God had wished.
A. ELDON (on camera): Well, thank goodness you're here.
SHAFFI: It just made me proud that my pictures or the pictures of my colleagues who have risked their life and done this hard work and it has saved lives. That's the main thing. I'm proud that my life has not been wasted from being a cameraman in Africa.
A. ELDON (voice-over): I have never been more proud of my big brother than I am today. And I think he may even be proud of me too.
D. ELDON, VOICE DRAMATIZATION: Plato said that it is only the dead who have seen the end of war, which means photojournalists will unfortunately never be out of a job.
A. ELDON: Out of confusion and despair, I have finally found peace. I have not felt this calm in the four years since Dan died. In those years, many other journalists have died, and many more will in the years to come. But I can understand now why they live the lives they do.
When I started on this journey, I had so many questions about why Dan would choose a career that could cost him his life and whether or not his sacrifice was worth it.
For the last four years, the hardest thing for me has been knowing that Dan died to tell a story and yet, the story continued. My brother didn't live long enough to see the end of war, and I may not either. But I believe more than ever that what we do matters. I hope that wherever we are, we can do something to make the world more peaceful. I hope one day we can live in a world where no one has to die to tell a story.
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