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INSIDER THREAT TO WAR JOURNALISTS?

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One Killed, One Wounded by Shooter in Afghan Uniform
By Harold Hutchison

Two journalists were shot, one fatally, during an “insider attack” in Khost province. The attack was similar to those that have normally targeted American and NATO troops.

According to media reports, AP photographer Anja Niedringhaus, who had won the Pulitzer Prize, was killed in the attack, which was carried out by a district police officer. The shooter reportedly shouted “Allah ackbar” before firing an AK-47 rifle at Niedringhaus and Kathy Gannon, a reporter with the Associated Press.

Gannon was wounded in the attack and was taken to a hospital. The governor of Khost has ordered an investigation into the attack. The attack was the third targeting journalists within the last month. A British journalist was killed on 11 March, and an Afghan journalist working for AFP was killed, along with three members of his family.

“Insider” or “green-on-blue” attacks have usually targeted American or NATO troops. One this past February left two American soldiers dead and four wounded. According to a media report on that attack, 142 Americans have been killed in such attacks since 2008, and another 163 coalition troops have also become casualties.

The Taliban have favored the tactic of infiltrating personnel to hit American targets.