Journalist inspires through writing, research, activism

Jasmine Samis

Marie Colvin was a journalist who specialized as a war correspondent and is one of my favorite role models. I honestly can’t explain how much I appreciate her and her work. Colvin was an amazing writer, and she had to go to great lengths to get her information and her sources. 

 Today there are memorials and people around who can express how impressive of a person and writer Colvin was. 

Today she is known mostly because of how she was killed when she and her photography partner were targeted for digging too deep into something that someone didn’t want to be discovered.  Colvin passed away on February 22, 2012, but she left doing what she loved. 

Marie Colvin was an amazing writer. Probably not PG-13 due to the fact that a lot of her work dealt with killing, cussing, and other issues parents aren’t comfortable with. However, all the killing, cussing, etc just made it seem more real as if readers were actually on the battlefield or creeping around with her.

 She wrote with such compassion and detail that I never have room to be bored. Which is saying something considering I can’t even read a magazine without having my mind wander. It wasn’t just the way Colvin wrote, though. It was the journey she had to go through in order to get her sources and information. 

Each new publication didn’t just take a month or so to publish; some took years. Colvin had to travel, disguise herself to blend in, figure out if she had allies, and make a plan to escape in case things went wrong.

Being a journalist or correspondent can be very dangerous, especially if they are doing what Colvin did. 

Colvin found lots of information about human trafficking, neglect of government, people changing another person’s face to look like theirs in order to avoid assassinations, and other illegal things going on in countries that they wouldn’t want to get out. 

With that in mind, I can hardly imagine how hard it was to sneak into a country undetected and gather information that could put her life, as well as others, in peril.

 If the country’s officials found out she was there digging for information, they would find ways to get rid of her. This is where her escape plan came into play.

Her bravery for even entering foreign countries with inhumane events taking place is enough to show how competent she was at her job. 

I enjoy reading about Colvin’s many battles and problems when escaping a country because, while being extremely scary based on her descriptions, I had the ability to feel what she was feeling, understand her thinking, and basically live as she was living throughout her adventure. 

She explained each adventure and person she met along the way with so much detail that it’s not difficult to picture it in my head. Sometimes I wish she wouldn’t explain with such detail because it’s almost too easy to get lost in what she’s writing about.

There’s one article of Colvin’s in particular that I really enjoy. However, it’s also a story that could’ve gone unread by me because it makes me question some people’s thought process.

In the article, Colvin wrote about an individual who went through trauma and a personality change. The head of the government wasn’t the best leader, but an individual saw him as a role model. 

The leader was a person of great power and many of his followers were very loyal. The man who looked up to the leader wanted to prove his worth but didn’t realize the cost of pledging his loyalty. The story continues to weave the events that transpire in a way that perpetually draws the reader in. 

Colvin explains the story in detail through emotions. The article not only shines light on what happens around the world, but also describes the type of person Colvin is. 

Today that leader is still powerful and could have come for Colvin if she was alive. Despite the dangers of releasing such a revealing story, she wanted to help spread the story which displays how Colvin was a genuine and selfless person.

I would highly recommend checking out https://mariecolvincenter.org/ and thoroughly reading each and every story. A lot of journalists are not given enough credit, and Colvin is a good example of that. She was truly an inspirational writer and role model who makes me aspire to become a great writer as well.