CPJ REPORT REVEALS NEW DETAILS ABOUT PALESTINE HOTEL ATTACK
Based on interviews with a dozen journalists at the scene of the attack, including two embedded reporters monitoring radio traffic between U.S. troops, CPJ says it has learned that Pentagon officials and tank commanders on the ground knew the hotel was full of international journalists and were intent on not hitting it. However, there is no evidence to support the official U.S. position that American forces were returning hostile fire from the Palestine Hotel, CPJ notes.
Journalists covering the U.S. military command headquarters in Baghdad said commanders there were aware that the hotel was in the vicinity of fighting between U.S. and Iraqi forces and that journalists were staying there, CPJ says. That information was apparently not conveyed to the commander of the tank that fired on the hotel and killed Reuters cameraman Taras Protsyuk and Jose Cuoso of Spanish television station Telecinco. The actions of the U.S. military "raise questions about whether all appropriate measures were taken to avoid firing on the hotel," CPJ says.
CPJ has called on the Pentagon to conduct a thorough, public investigation into the incident to ensure that similar episodes do not occur in the future.
Read the full report here: http://www.cpj.org/Briefings/2003/palestine_hotel/palestine_hotel.html