Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Reporters on the Job

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Reporters on the Job

Article excerpt

* Grateful for a Detour: Dan Murphy went to Najaf on Wednesday to report on the assassinations of senior officials working with the US- led coalition in Iraq (page 1). But on the way, he was reminded how many ordinary Iraqis are also giving their lives during this transition period. The 2-hour drive from Baghdad ordinarily passes through Mahmudiyah, a scruffy market town where desert sands sometimes pile up on the streets.

But on Wednesday, the locals shut the center of town following an early morning attack that had killed 3 local policemen. Dan's resourceful driver found a sandy donkey track around town that added an hour to the trip. Dan grumbled that sealing off the whole town seemed an over-reaction and that the attackers were likely long gone. But today he found out he was wrong. On Wednesday night insurgents attacked a US patrol in the same town, killing one soldier from the 82nd airborne and injuring two. He was glad for the detour.

* French Holiday Sacrificed: The Monitor's Paris-based staff writer Peter Ford says that he is not unduly concerned by the prospect of losing a French public holiday in June to fund programs for the elderly (this page). …

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