Saturday, April 19, 2003

Impressive new breeze in war reporting
THE SCOTSMAN, 19 APRIL 2003--AMID rockets’ bright glare, shells bursting in air, we knew from our screens that Rageh Omaar, the BBC’s Baghdad man was still there, unruffled by the fog and explosive impact of war.

While I believe war reporting lost an authoritative voice when Kate Adie, that booming Boadi-cea of the BBC’s battlefront reporting, was dropped in favour of, she claimed, younger and sexier front-line correspondents, I welcome a new, youthful-looking, impeccably-accented and incisively-delivering reporter to the front-line, mass-information echelons.

That he is Somali-born did not surprise me, a sun-dried, fly-stung, camel-bitten veteran of Somaliland’s deserts, because he seemed an older version of Yusev, a Somali lad, aged about six summers, who was gainfully employed as a punkah boy at British Army HQ, Hargeisa, when I was there in 1945-46, and resembled a cherub blowing wind in an old map. MORE

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