11/22/2004

MSNBC - What happened in the Fallujah mosque

MSNBC picked up Kevin's letter to Marines

OPEN LETTER TO MARINES
By Kevin Sites
Correspondent
NBC News
Updated: 1:37 p.m. ET Nov. 22, 2004

Since the shooting in the mosque, I've been haunted that I have not been able to tell you directly what I saw or explain the process by which the world came to see it as well. As you know, I'm not some war-zone tourist with a camera who doesn't understand that ugly things happen in combat. I've spent most of the last five years covering global conflict. But I have never in my career been a 'gotcha' reporter -- hoping for people to commit wrongdoings so I can catch them at it.

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This week I've even been shocked to see myself painted as some kind of anti-war activist. Anyone who has seen my reporting on television or has read my dispatches is fully aware of the lengths I've gone to play it straight down the middle -- not to become a tool of propaganda for the left or the right.

But I find myself a lightning rod for controversy in reporting what I saw occur in front of me, camera rolling.

It's time you have the facts from me, in my own words, about what I saw -- without imposing on that Marine -- guilt or innocence or anything in between. I want you to read my account and make up your own minds about whether you think what I did was right or wrong. All the other armchair analysts don't mean a damn to me.

Here it goes."

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