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Reporters on the Job

Cedar Revolution Leader: Lebanese newspaper editor Jibran Tueni - who was killed in a bombing Sunday - was well-known in Beirut, says correspondent Nicholas Blanford. During last spring's "Cedar Revolution," Mr. Tueni had a front-row seat for the demonstrations from his office overlooking Martyr's Square. "He was at the forefront of events. He gave speeches and could be easily spotted by his red and white scarf as he walked among the crowds in the square," says Nick, who knew Tueni personally.

In March of 2000, four months before Bashar al-Assad took over from his father as president of Syria, Tueni broke the taboo of publicly criticizing Syria. "He wrote a column. It was an unprecedented open letter. It called on the youthful Bashar to redress the relationship between Lebanon and Syria. That letter was the opening shot in what became a growing momentum in Lebanon clamoring for withdrawal of Syria - which finally happened five years later.

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Side by Side: Monitor correspondent Jill Carroll, who is traveling with US and Iraqi troops, observed cultural differences between the two militaries - both big and small. While some Iraqi soldiers had different views on treating captives, they also didn't see eye to eye on fundamental parts of a soldier's life: food and shelter.

"Iraqis hate the Marine food because they say the MREs [Meals Ready to Eat] stink," says Jill. Instead, the Iraqi soldiers head into local markets to make homemade bread and vegetable soup. "They also had better living quarters than the marines, who were sitting in the dust with the sandflies - and sandflies do bite, I can attest to that."

- Ben Arnoldy
Asia editor


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