Archive for Richard Engel

VIDEO-- Welcome home Richard Engel. He was held hostage in Syria: "There were mock shootings."


richard engel hostage in syria, home again

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Welcome home (NBC News correspondent) Richard Engel, from the bottom of my heart. You are a treasure, we worry about you constantly, and value you like crazy.

Nobody, but nobody, reports on wars, revolutions and political transitions the way you do, with such heart and soul, with such a deep and sympathetic understanding of the people you cover.

Now don't scare us like that again. Ever.

More here.


Video- AJA reporter holding up a phone broadcasting Qaddafi's security force commands


Wow, that takes some serious cojones to do without covering your face. Huge h/t to @caradox and @abuaardvark

Explosions and gunfire rock besieged Tripoli

Explosions and gunfire rocked Tripoli on Saturday night, after days of battlefield defeats left Muammar Gaddafi's government and troops penned ever more tightly in the besieged capital.

The scale of the unrest was unclear, but speculation was rife that Gaddafi's 41-year rule was close to collapse.

Tripoli residents told Reuters they could hear shooting from several locations and there were anti-Gaddafi protesters in the streets. Government spokesman Moussa Ibrahim told state television however: "All of Tripoli is safe and stable."

Earlier, opposition fighters expelled government forces from the strategic western city of Az Zawiyah, a major victory in their march on Tripoli.

Lots of unsubstantiated rumours out there (including from @richardengelnbc) that Gaddafi and his sons have fled the country.


Streaming Al Jazeera "was the work-around required by the censorship practiced by America’s corporate gatekeepers."


Frank Rich does it again:

...The Egyptian government pulled the plug on its four main Internet providers and yet the revolution only got stronger. ... [A]  knowledgeable on-the-scene journalist, Richard Engel... set the record straight on MSNBC in a satellite hook-up with Rachel Maddow. “This didn’t have anything to do with Twitter and Facebook,” he said. “This had to do with people’s dignity, people’s pride. People are not able to feed their families.” [...]

What’s important is “why they were driven to do it in the first place” — starting with the issues of human dignity and crushing poverty [...]

More damning, Morozov also demonstrates how the digital tools so useful to citizens in a free society can be co-opted by tech-savvy dictators, police states and garden-variety autocrats to spread propaganda and to track (and arrest) conveniently networked dissidents, from Iran to Venezuela.  [...]  [E]ven in the case of the young and relatively wired populace of Egypt, only some 20 percent of those masses have Internet access. [...]

Unable to watch Al Jazeera English, and ravenous for comprehensive and sophisticated 24/7 television coverage of the Middle East otherwise unavailable on television, millions of Americans last week tracked down the network’s Internet stream on their computers. Such was the work-around required by the censorship practiced by America’s corporate gatekeepers. [...]

We’ve been inculcated to assume that whoever comes out on top is ipso facto a jihadist.

He covers so much more, so please go read the whole thing here.


Richard Engel reports major concessions in Egypt + VIDEO- John Kerry agrees, they are 'quite extraordinary'


NBC's Richard Engel, in Egypt, just reported the following concessions, which he describes as significant reforms. Liveblog:

  • End the emergency law in effect since 1981. This martial law suspension is the most important. This is a major concession.
  • Allow more candidates to run for president.
  • More freedom of the press.
  • Respect the youth movement.
  • Form a follow-up committee to carry out reform.
  • Form a commission to release political prisoners.

I missed one, he was rattling them off pretty fast.

He went on to say that the opposition is divided. It consists of hard core, no more Mubarak protesters v. people who say a lot of reform has been promised, maybe we need to go back to work. They say it's time to move on, even with Mubarak in a caretaker role.

Here is video of an interview with John Kerry on today's Meet the Press. He agrees that the concessions are "quite extraordinary":


PhotOh! Rachel Maddow goes to Afghanistan


Rachel Maddow goes to Afghanistan, via HuffPo. Follow the link for more photos and Rachel's journal. And how "Rachel" is that photo?

She'll be doing her show from there next week, with Richard Engel. It will undoubtedly rock.


Rachel Maddow To Anchor From Afghanistan


Rachel Maddow is going to Afghanistan. Once again-- and I say this without hesitation-- she will provide the finest reporting with more accuracy (especially with NBC News Chief Foreign Correspondent Richard Engel joining her, which he is) than you'll find nearly anywhere else.

And I say "nearly" because I can't say for absolute certain that she is the most accurate. But IMHO, she's right up there:

MSNBC announced that Maddow will travel to Kabul this week and anchor "The Rachel Maddow Show" live from Kabul next Tuesday and Wednesday (July 6-7).


Richard Engel: Rehab of Afghan forces will take much longer than a year.


By GottaLaff

Richard Engel on The Rachel Maddow Show right now is reporting what nobody else is... yet:

Priority of training Afghans is in trouble.

In a briefing for top commanders, Petraeus and McChrystal, a new study is calling into question, well, everything, saying that "the Afghan national army is 'not at war'".

Engel: "It's more than sobering." Rehabilitating the Afghan forces will take way longer than one year, more like four years. Getting them up and running and in place is impossible. The number of Afghan army/police has been inflated.

The training "cannot take a year to fix this problem." "Personal gain is placed above survival."

The report is not complete yet. More to come.