Foreign Correspondent: Marie Colvin
20 June 2013
Inspired by Marie Colvin because as a foreign correspondent she dared to seek and expose the truth in areas of extreme conflict around the world; because she showed tremendous courage in doing so; because she brought the ugly face of human suffering to our news screens; because she paid the ultimate price with her life whilst on assignment in Syria; because I was fortunate enough to drive across the border from Lebanon into Syria before the Arab Spring, to explore the ancient city of Damascus and experience the warmth of the people who are now fighting for survival; because Marie Colvin was loved and respected by many and finally because apparently she was a super-cool woman who wore La Perla lingerie under her combats! x apsara
The Passport to Prove It: A Stamped History of Marie Colvin’s Career
Through the blurred ink of immigration stamps and festooned Middle Eastern visas, Marie Colvin’s passport reads like an illustrated time line for her coverage of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s election, the rise of the Taliban, the Arab Spring, Muammar Qaddafi’s capture and death, and the conflict in Syria. After becoming a foreign-affairs correspondent for London’s Sunday Times in 1985, Colvin entered nearly every war zone on the planet right up to her death on assignment, in a rocket attack on the besieged city of Homs, Syria, in February of this year. With more than 150 stamps, this document confirms Colvin as the tireless reporter, always ready to board a plane headed for nowhere nice. [excerpt: Vanity Fair]
Vogue editor Alexandra Shulman paid tribute to Colvin, a close friend for many years, in the Sunday Times the week after she was killed - recalling Colvin's infamous parties, the moments when she'd go "terrifyingly AWOL", and quiet nights spent discussing everything from "war to boys".
"Marie was one of the great foreign correspondents of her age," Shulman says in the piece, "known to plunge to the point of deepest conflict and remain there for longer than anyone else... But although she was, of course, serious, brave, clever and phenomenally daring, those weren't the qualities that made her such a great friend."
"Although Marie was able to penetrate the most difficult and dangerous of territories, she was tremendously vulnerable," Shulman adds. "She was not fearless. She was often fearful and apprehensive about what she was doing, which makes the fact she did it even more impressive."
"Our mission is to report these horrors of war with accuracy and without prejudice," Colvin said at a 2010 Fleet Street ceremony honouring fallen journalists, the Telegraph reports. "We always have to ask ourselves whether the level of risk is worth the story. What is bravery, and what is bravado? Journalists covering combat shoulder great responsibilities and face difficult choices. Sometimes they pay the ultimate price."
She was known for her sense of humour. When asked to contribute a contributor's photo at Vogue, she sent in this image, along with the following message: "Does this one work? You would have to include the Libyan general I am interviewing - he looks like I am driving him mad, which I think is the best part of the photo. Not to mention that all my friends would empathise!"
The Colvin family has established a memorial fund in honor of Marie. The fund will direct donations to charitable and educational organizations that reflect Marie's lifelong dedication to humanitarian aid, human rights, journalism and education. You can support the fund by buying Marie’s book “On the Front Line”.