I stumbled on this piece the other night, about what it’s like to think you are going to die while reporting. I had a similar (albiet infinitely less) situation when I was in Iraq, where I felt like I was a sitting duck just waiting to get killed.
I know when I was finished with that ride I wanted nothing more than to be home. I didn’t have the choice to leave at that time, but you have to wonder why after a real brush with death (not just perceived, as mine was) people keep going back.
I can’t thank them enough, though, for being willing to, because it is those stories that tell us about what is going on in Libya, Syria, Afghanistan, Pakistan and elsewhere. It feels like you are alone, but you are there for everyone else, so they can no what is happening and lend some kind of support.
In Syria, for instance, where reports are soldiers are turning on soldiers but there is no independent verification, it feels like there is a war in a vacuum. Who will win? Who will lose? When will it be over? How will the world know? That’s the scariest thing to me. It may even be worse than feeling like a sitting duck.