Modal close

Hi there,

You turn to Democracy Now! for ad-free news you can trust. Maybe you come for our daily headlines. Maybe you come for in-depth stories that expose government and corporate abuses of power. This week Democracy Now! is celebrating our 23rd birthday. For over two decades, we've produced our daily news hour without ads, government funding or corporate underwriting. How is this possible? Only with your support. Right now, in honor of Democracy Now!'s birthday, every donation we receive will be doubled by a generous supporter. This means if you give $30 today, Democracy Now! will get $60 to support our daily news hour. Please do your part. It takes just a couple of minutes to make sure that Democracy Now! is there for you and everybody else. Thank you! -Amy Goodman

Non-commercial news needs your support.

We rely on contributions from you, our viewers and listeners to do our work. If you visit us daily or weekly or even just once a month, now is a great time to make your monthly contribution.

Please do your part today.


Reports From the War Zone: What We Won’t Hear From CNN Reporters in Afghanistan

Media Options


Since September 11, US and European reporters have been clustered in the Pakistani cities of Islamabad and Quetta andalong the border of Afghanistan. But the high costs and risks of being there mean most US reporters in the arearepresent a network or news agency. Living expenses for Westerners in Pakistan have been pushed extremely high: hotelroom rates have gone up three times since September 11th in Islamabad.

But entering Afghanistan is even more expensive. News organizations say they were asked to pay $2,000 per person forthe Taliban-conducted bus tour of Kandahar, to witness firsthand the destruction wrought by continued US-ledairstrikes. To get into Feyzabad, stronghold of the anti-Taliban Northern Alliance, takes a $300 helicopter ride.Space is so booked that some reporters have hired cars for hundreds of dollars, only to be stopped by armed gangs onthe road who can demand an additional “toll fee” of as much as $ 4,000.

Those journalists who can afford to get to Afghanistan are carefully monitored by the Taliban-and by the USgovernment.

Anthony Collings began working as a reporter for CNN shortly after the network was started in 1980. While onassignment for CNN Collings was captured and held at gunpoint in Lebanon by Syrian and Palestinian gunmen who thoughthe was an Israeli spy. During his journalistic careers Collings served as Washington correspondent and Rome bureauchief for the network, as well as bureau chief for Newsweek in London and Bonn.

His book ??Words Of Fire: Independent Journalists Who Challenge Dictators, Drug Lords, And Other Enemies Of A FreePress tells of other self-employed and under-resourced independent journalists who go to “ground zero” to get astory even if it defies the silencing rules of the criminal networks, the war, or the government. Collings arguesthat those journalists who are unfettered to the power structures are often the only ones who break through the newsbarrier.


  • Anthony Collings, author of ??Words Of Fire: Independent Journalists Who Challenge Dictators, Drug Lords,And Other Enemies Of A Free Press.

Related Story

Video squareStoryOct 22, 2004The Oil Factor: Behind the War on Terror
The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.

Non-commercial news needs your support

We rely on contributions from our viewers and listeners to do our work.
Please do your part today.
Make a donation
Up arrowTop