Friday, March 9, 2007

Danger shouldn't stop journalists, newswoman says

By Paul J. Gough

A CBS News correspondent badly injured in a bombing in Iraq that killed two members of her crew said Thursday that it was still crucial that journalists cover the war, despite the dangers.

Kimberly Dozier was critically wounded and James Brolan and Paul Douglas killed when a car bomb exploded last May while they traveled with U.S. troops in a Baghdad neighborhood. Dozier and ABC News correspondent Bob Woodruff, who was critically wounded in January 2006 by a bomb, were among those honored Thursday night at the Radio and Television News Directors Foundation First Amendment dinner at the Ritz Carlton in Washington, D.C.

"I've been asked (by executives) if it's worth it (covering Iraq) ... I think we don't have a choice. We still have to go out on the ground," Dozier said. "We have to try to find the truth for our audiences back home and our leaders back home."

Dozier and Woodruff have both made miraculous recoveries from their injuries. Doctors feared that Dozier, for instance, would never walk again. Dozier hinted that she might return to a war zone someday.

"I hope to join you, not right away, but sometime soon," Dozier said.

Woodruff said that he and Dozier -- as well as Douglas, Brolan and Doug Vogt, who was hurt in the same blast as Woodruff -- were proof that reporting was not without risk. And he couldn't say why he and Dozier and Vogt were spared.

"I still don't think we'll ever, ever understand," Woodruff said. "But I know that we were very, very lucky." Woodruff called for journalists to spend more time "covering the planet" in a world where it's crucial to know about international stories and the U.S. can scarcely afford to ignore them.

Reuters/Hollywood Reporter

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