Frontline by David Loyn

Having just finished it, I would heartily recommend Frontline by David Loyn to anyone with an interest in both current affairs and their reporting (Penguin, ISBN 0 141 01784 8, £9.99 in paperback).

'Instead of heroes nowadays we end up with health and safety officers'. So says Loyn as he ends the story of the Frontline stable of cameramen that covered Afghanistan from the Soviet to the US invasion, both Gulf Wars and the succession (secession) of Balkan and Central Asian conflicts.

Managing to be methodical but colourful at the same time, he tells the remarkable story of the courage, initiative and professionalism of a band of individuals committed to showing the realities of conflict, some of whom lost their lives in the process.

He has some interesting things to say about 'war porn' and the editorial decisions of news politicos. Above all he stresses the importance of independents telling stories when so many news machines appear to have taken sides.

A bleddy good read on all sorts of levels. Highly recommended (...not on commission - honest!)

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