Recognize the important work done by journalists



The Editorial Board

With the recent Russian invasion of Ukraine, journalists and many who have been covering the war have been unceremoniously silenced. Everyone who is aiming to report on what is happening should be commended and recognized for their work.

Since the invasion on Feb. 24, journalists on the ground have been under attack. Despite being clearly marked as “press” on vehicles and wearing protective gear, media teams have been under fire and sustained gunshot injuries.

“They clearly shot to kill,” Guillame Briquet, a Swiss photographer who was nearly shot and subsequently harassed by Russian forces, said to Reporters Without Borders. “If I hadn’t ducked, I would have been hit. I’ve been fired on before in other war zones, but I’ve never seen this. Journalists traveling around the country with no war experience are in mortal danger.”

There are several other stories of journalists who are covering the war, as well as anti-war protests, who have faced gunfire and were harassed by Russian authorities.

Some reporters have also gone missing or been detained, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists, and four journalists have been killed, including award-winning American journalist Brent Renaud.

These journalists have courageously endeavored to inform the world about the war on Ukraine. They have sustained threats to their own safety and mortality in the attempt to expose the truth in the battlefield. Dangers exacerbated by considerable pressures on media to be silenced, despite journalists having the right to be there under international law.

The Russian government has made it illegal to call what is happening in Ukraine a “war” or “invasion,” deeming anything contrary to this as “fake news.” Those who go against this law can face a 15-year-prison sentence; as such, several news organizations, including Bloomberg and CBS, have begun limiting activity in the country.

Media professionals who are willing to risk their lives to inform the world of the truth are important. People should be informed about what is happening and why it is happening. Media professionals shouldn’t be punished for seeking out the truth.

It should be noted that reporters also have the responsibility of being non-biased. Certain media networks have been criticized for placing a double-standard when it comes to reporting on Ukraine versus other war-torn countries such as those in the Middle East.

News should be objective and as clear as it can be to fully inform the masses.

The risks of journalism are considerable and shouldn’t be dismissed. Everyone endeavoring to communicate the truth should be commended for their work.