Wartime coverage necessary

The freedom of the press is in danger, and this time it’s the most free country in the world that’s threatening it.On Sunday, Afghan journalists working for the Associated Press were taking pictures and videos of a suicide attack on a U.S. Marine convoy in Afghanistan when U.S. soldiers started firing on civilians, reportedly killing 16.

This event, like the bombing, warranted coverage, and the journalists continued covering the event.

But what the U.S. soldiers did next is horrifying.

The Afghan journalists claim U.S. troops confiscated the cameras and actually deleted the photos and videos of the soldiers tracking down civilians on foot and in vehicles.

They also claim the Americans threatened them with raised fists to not publish pictures like these anywhere.

It is ludicrous that members of the U.S. military, dedicated to protecting the free world, would attempt to squash freedom and truth by limiting coverage of the war.

There was no case of protecting national security or secret intelligence from the press, just a bloody incident that faulted both sides.

Wars necessitate coverage, and militaries need to be held accountable for their actions.

The Vietnam War became rightfully notorious thanks to video coverage for the first time. Now, the president and his troops need to finally be held accountable for what is happening miles away.

Whether this incident was perpetuated by the attack on the American soldiers or it came from higher-in-command is both unknown and irrelevant.

However, by forcibly stopping the freedom of the press, the U.S. military has gotten itself into a slew of additional problems.

The AP plans to launch a protest with the American military, creating even more coverage of its horrendous mistake.

It’s time to face the fact that American soldiers are no longer perceived as liberators, and no amount of killing and threatening on our part can change that.

Features editor Amber Parcher for the editorial board.