"There's an Asian proverb that says, 'When the buffalo fight the small animals are trampled.' Lara Marlowe has devoted much of her working life as a journalist telling the story of the small animals (in this case human beings) caught in the battles between competing armies and ideologies."
This was the opening line of Mark Bannerman's interview with Liberties author Lara Marlowe
on Australia's ABC Radio last Saturday. Mark Bannerman has clearly followed Lara Marlowe's work as he conducted a lively and interesting interview, drawing from her extraordinary knowledge and experience of war-torn countries. The discussion began and ended with the current unrest in Libya, but touched on her time in Europe and the Middle East.
Bannerman introduced Lara, the Washington correspondent for The Irish Times, by saying '...While Lara has never been shy reporting the big strategic issues, it's fair to say I think she has also made it her business to document the impact of war on ordinary people.' A tribute Lara deserves and one she proved in her discussion on Libya. Lara speaks with authority on the issues she has made her life's work. The interview highlighted the many times she, as a war correspondent, has watched and waited for intervention from the west, referring twice to the horrors of genocide in Bosnia and Rwanda. She spoke with wisdom and warning regarding Obama's reluctance to to intervene in the tragic situation in Libya, saying, 'the problem is if you wait to see if it's [genocide] going to happen and it does, then you are guilty.'
Lara Marlowe has been a foreign correspondent in some of the world's most troubled countries - notably Lebanon, the Palestinian territories, Iraq and Haiti - as well as the power centres of Paris and Washington. What is most evident is the emphasis Lara places on the ordinary human beings caught in the crossfire of war and its devastating effects.