Somalia: Land of Anarchy
Six years after his producer was shot dead in Somalia, BBC correspondent Peter Greste returned to the war-ravaged African nation to document everyday life. What he and cameraman/director Fred Scott report in this segment of the current affairs series Panorama is beyond unsettling. Somalia’s misery is encyclopedic: Buildings and infrastructure bombed to rubble. Famine. Disease. Refugee camps. Pirates, rebels and religious fanatics vying for control in a never-ending scrum of war. At great personal risk, Greste and Scott connived to get far afield from the relatively safe enclave in Mogadishu controlled by Somalia’s United Nations-backed government. Through them, we see and hear from UN peacekeeping troops who can’t cross a street without risking snipers’ bullets, from doctors and burned and maimed Somalians in battered hospitals, and from the shell-shocked noncombatants—the women, children and elderly—who live in unrelenting fear. The report runs just over 20 minutes, but that’s more than enough to make an indelible impression. The British Foreign Service made the piece mandatory viewing for its Somalia division, most of whose operatives had never experienced the country’s crises this up-close. For its wide-ranging and unflinching portrait of a country eviscerated by years of war, Somalia: Land of Anarchy receives a Peabody Award.
PRIMARY PRODUCTION CREDITS
Executive Producers: Tom Giles, Daniel Pearl. Producers: Peter Greste, Emeka Onono. Director: Fred Scott. Writer: Peter Greste. Reporter: Peter Greste. Videographer: Fred Scott. Editor: Henry Wood. Security: Chris Bullock