Saturday, April 14, 2007

“The Lies of Mario Lozano”

by Giuliana Sgrena
(the author of Friendly Fire: The Remarkable Story of a Journalist Kidnapped in Iraq, Rescued by an Italian Secret Service Agent, and Shot by U.S. Forces)

"(April 12, 2007) After two years of silence, Mario Lozano has marched forward to tell the truth—or rather, according to the version presented by the American media, to “expose the lies of Sgrena.” Too bad that neither he nor his advisors have noticed that in the meantime my testimony has been confirmed by the results of the investigations carried out by experts appointed by the judiciary on the car in which we were riding that night of 4 March 2005 in Baghdad. Mario Lozano has been summoned to stand trial for the voluntary political homicide of Nicola Calipari and the attempted voluntary homicide of Andrea Carpani and myself on the basis of investigations—not, certainly, on the basis of my “fantasies.”.......

Why doesn’t Lozano come to present his version of the facts at the trial? He says that what is scheduled to begin on Tuesday in Rome is only a “shot trial.” This contempt for the Italian judiciary would seem to warrant some kind of taking of a position on the part of our government. And if it all just seems like a farce, why does it cause so much agitation and discomfort in its repudiation of the version put forward by the American military commission, which has already been taken apart by the Campregher-Regaglini report (from the names of the two Italians who took part in the commission).......

After what happened it is easy to understand that Lozano might have nightmares—as I have as the one who lived through the same event from the other side of the barricade. We know that the rules of engagement are brutal, that the American soldiers in Iraq are terrorized—but there are many of them who had had the courage to rebel against this situation.

What is unacceptable is turning Lozano himself into a victim. This perspective is nurtured by U.S. journalists who interviewed him in response to an order from above, and who see no problem at all with a unilateral version of the facts and with making denigrating references to my book Friendly Fire (Haymarket Books).

A real lesson in journalism “made in the U.S.A.”"

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