Cameraman scoops mosque killing

Video of a US marine apparently shooting a wounded man in Falluja was captured by an internet age journalist who often reports and photographs war stories, then posts his impressions on his own weblog.

    Sites captured an unarmed man being shot inside a mosque

    Kevin Sites, a freelancer who works part time for NBC News, was being kept under wraps by the network on Tuesday as the investigation into the shooting continued.

    The youthful, long-haired Sites has worked for NBC, CNN and ABC News and has covered war zones in Afghanistan and Colombia.

    He has extensive experience in Iraq, where he was embedded with a marines unit during the operation in Falluja.

    "He is a skilled reporter, a skilled video journalist who is willing to go and chronicle the news in the difficult places, under difficult conditions," said Bill Wheatley, NBC News vice-president.

    Sites handled the incident "completely professionally", Wheatley said, recognising the importance of the story and reporting its aftermath.

    Web diary

    While working for CNN a year ago, Sites and a crew were held captive for several hours by Iraqi fighters who accused them of being spies. His hands were bound behind his back and a machine gun round fired at his feet.

    NBC said Sites handled the story

    'completely professionally'

    Sites left CNN, he later said, partly because the company would not let him maintain a weblog on his war reporting. CNN declined to comment on Tuesday.

    There are no such problems at NBC News: Anchorman Brian Williams even promoted the name of his site at the end of Sites' Nightly News report on Monday.

    His site,

    http://www.kevinsites.net/

    , contains his diary of the action in Falluja. It describes travelling with the marines and encountering bodies of dead Iraqis along the way:

    "This one is dressed in clean, white sneakers and athletic pants. He is on his back - his arms behind his head, his face seems nearly peaceful, content."

    Reality of war

    He also posts pictures of the marines on patrol and during their off hours, displaying pictures of their families and their tattoos.

    Nothing was posted on the weekend Falluja mosque incident, however.

    Sites has described his blog as a way for readers to understand more of the experience of being in a war zone.

    "Readers want to share your adventure," he told Broadcasting & Cable magazine last summer.

    "What you see in the paper or on TV tends to be the cleaned-up version. I didn't tell you I had to sleep in the dirt to tell a story for TV."

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Survivor stories from Super Typhoon Haiyan

    Survivor stories from Super Typhoon Haiyan

    The Philippines’ Typhoon Haiyan was the strongest storm ever to make landfall. Five years on, we revisit this story.

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    We Are Still Here: A Story from Native Alaska

    We Are Still Here: A Story from Native Alaska

    From Qatar to Alaska, a personal journey exploring what it means to belong when your culture is endangered.