NYT War Correspondent Helped Secure Release Of 4 Captured Journalists


How do you get captured journalists released in a country where the United States no longer has diplomats?

If you are The New York Times, you turn to one of your own.

According to a memo sent out by executive editor Bill Keller, war correspondent and At War blogger C.J. Chivers spent the weekend securing the safe release of Anthony Shadid, Lynsey Addario, Tyler Hicks, and Stephen Farrell.

“There are too many people to thank, but I will tip my hat to [NYT assistant general counsel] David McCraw, who has become entirely too expert at the business of extricating Times journalists from peril,” Keller wrote. “I also need to thank Chris Chivers, who dropped everything to come in Thursday night and spent the last three days (and nights) dug in with David working on the release.”

The journalist and former Marine reported for the paper from Afghanistan, Israel, Iraq, Russia, and many other foreign nations. Keller did not specify exactly what function Chivers performed during the operation, but his familiarity with the region must have been useful.

Keller called the release of the four captured correspondents a reason for happiness: “Because of the volatile situation in Libya, we’ve kept our enthusiasm and comments in check until they were out of the country, but now feels like a moment for celebration. And before long we’ll all know the details of their experience.”

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