Dana worked for 14 years as a journalist for Reuters,
in Palestine and throughout the Middle East. Mazen
did most of his work in his hometown of Hebron and
in other cities in the occupied West Bank. While working
as a journalist in Palestine Mazen was the target
of Israeli violence on literally scores of occasions.
Shot by Israeli soldiers firing M-16s on three occasions.
Shot by Israeli soldiers firing plastic bullets in
more than twenty incidents
Beaten by Israelis settlers and soldiers on numerous
Had his ankles, both legs, both hands, several ribs
and skull fractured in these attacks
Arrested over 70 times
Detained without charge or conviction ranging from
1 day to several months
2001 Mazen was recognized for his unrelenting commitment
to exposing the truth of Israeli occupation when the
Committee to Project Journalists gave him the International
Press Freedom Award.
May of 2003 Mazen and his longtime colleague from
Hebron, Nael al-Shyoukhi, had traveled to Iraq and
reported on the U.S. military occupation of that country
a number of times.
August 17th after several face-to-face verbal exchanges
with U.S. troops where Dana and Shyoukhi received
permission to tape the U.S. run prison camp, a tank
mounted machine gunner opened fire on Dana, puncturing
his torso with multiple large caliber high velocity
rounds. Mazen Dana bled to death a few minutes later.
initial U.S. army claim was that Dana was mistaken
for an Iraqi holding a rocket propelled grenade launcher.
However, once other journalists on the scene quickly
pointed out that Dana had just talked with U.S. soldiers
only moments before his death, the official Army spokesperson
quickly withdrew this story and now will only say
that an investigation is underway. Clearly, the killing
of Mazen Dana is a message sent to all journalists
covering the U.S. occupation of Iraq. Any investigation
or media coverage of the cold reality of occupation
is being curbed by the possibility of assassination
by the U.S. army. So far, USUK occupation forces have
killed 17 journalists working in Iraq.
Holmes, former Reuters bureau chief in Jerusalem,
recalled: "a towering, chain-smoking bear of
a man with a ruddy complexion and expansive heart.
The amazing thing about Mazen was he was like the
king of Hebron. Every journalist in the city looked
up to him and any journalist who covered the Israeli-Palestinian
conflict will know and love Mazen." Mazen leaves
behind his wife Suzanne, four children and the entire
Dana clan of Hebron, occupied Palestine.
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