HEADLINES

Documentary: VICE – Iraq: Reporters Follow Rebels Fighting ISIS

Correspondent Ben Anderson: Reporting from the front-lines (Aired 02/02/16).

This documentary follows journalist Ben Anderson as he embeds with Iraqi fighters battling the Islamic State. He gains access to the three front lines in Iraq, where Sunni, Shiite and Kurdish forces are fighting for their lives. [01]

  • Thirteen years later, Iraq has collapsed into warring states.
  • A third of the country is controlled by ISIS,
  • which has also taken huge amounts of territory in Syria.

Anderson visits Russian military forces in Syria and meets captured ISIS fighters in Kurdistan.

Correspondent Ben Anderson goes on location to the unofficial borders separating the apocalyptic death cult’s caliphate and the surrounding civilian populations trying to flee or hold their ground. In each sectarian region, as well as on a Russian military base in Syria, he interviews Peshmerga fighting for a free Kurdistan, the abandoned remains of the Sons Of Iraq, Yazidi families, Shiite Iranian-backed militants, and captured ISIS jihadis,” outlines Dan Jakes in his A.V. Club review.

Correspondent Ben Anderson, seen on the VICE series, is a brave war reporter who takes himself and his uncredited cameraperson to the front lines in the fight against ISIS.

Correspondent Ben Anderson, seen on the VICE series, a brave war reporter takes himself camera-person to the front lines of war against ISIS. (Photo: HBO Watch).

Jakes continues, “Anderson instead tries to establish the facts and point out the catch-22s in order to facilitate a debate. Vice prides itself in visceral storytelling, and in that, it greatly succeeds. In one Orwellian scene, a soldier in Anbar Province shows off the welded and jerry-rigged weapons he and his soldiers use, then traces their ownership back and forth between them, the U.S., and the old Iraqi Army. The episode is smart enough to counter seemingly obvious solutions with hindsight and perspective. Why not just arm more rebel groups? Because that’s part of the reason why the region is so flooded with advanced weapons to begin with.

A conversation with Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, in which “terrorist” is tossed around seemingly without any attempt to clarify Islamic State versus rebels fighting Bashar Al-Assad (not mentioned once until 40 minutes in), is especially head-scratching. Sure, an hour is a short amount of time to recap more than a decade’s worth of bad Middle Eastern policies, but PBS has successfully … found a way to do it without coming under gunfire.

🔝

Watch VICE News on TV: Season Four Episode One here in our Documentaries section.


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  • Mission The Islamic State are trying to create 'a state that does not recognise the previous borders of Iraq or Syria,' said Dr. Anne Aly, a Research Fellow at Curtin University. (Photo/source: Daily Mail Australia).
  • UNICEF estimates nearly 400 children have been killed and over 600 injured in the past four months in the country, the poorest in the Middle East. 13 Yemeni teaching staff and four children were killed by a Saudi air strike on August 20. Two days before, coalition bombing in the Amran province took the lives of 17 civilians, injuring 20 more. UNICEF condemned what it called the “senseless bloodshed.” A Red Cross spokeswoman said the violence in Ta’iz, in southern Yemen, in just one day on August 21 left 80 people dead.
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  • Yemen woman in bright scarf and hat, "War humiliated my daughter." Aunt Khemissa argument.
  • Codepink protesters outside the NRA headquarters, Fairfax, Virginia June 19, 2016. (Photo: CODEPINK).
  • Souhayla, a 16-year-old girl who escaped the Islamic State after three years of captivity, at her uncle’s home in Shariya Camp, Iraq. Credit Alex Potter for The New York Times
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  • The teenager, Nihad Barakat Shamo Alawsi, was taken to Syria and then to the Islamic State stronghold of Mosul in northern Iraq, she told an event in London on Wednesday. "They raped us, they killed our men, they took our babies away from us," Alawsi, now 17, said at the event organised by the UK-based AMAR Foundation, a charity that provides education and healthcare in the Middle East.
  • Fatik Abdullah al-Rodaini, a Yemeni Journalist and humanitarian worker
  • People light candles at the scene of a massive car bomb attack in Karada, a busy shopping district where people were shopping for the upcoming Eid al-Fitr holiday, in the center of Baghdad, Iraq, Sunday, July 3, 2016. More than 100 people died Sunday in a car bombing that the Islamic extremist militia group said it carried out, an official of the Iraqi Interior Ministry said.
  • The Canadian Delegation to the United Nations Conference on International Organization, San Francisco, May 1945. (Photo: Public Domain). (Alistair Reign News Blog www.AlistairReignBlog.com).
  • Ray Rivera, left, a DJ at Pulse Orlando nightclub, is consoled by a friend, outside of the Orlando Police Department after a shooting involving multiple fatalities at the nightclub, Sunday, June 12, 2016, in Orlando, Fla. (Joe Burbank/Orlando Sentinel via AP) MAGS OUT; NO SALES; MANDATORY CREDIT
  • The remnants of a US drone strike on August 29, 2012 in Khashamir, Yemen. The strike killed three alleged members of Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, a policeman, and a cleric who preached against the armed group.

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