Tuesday, January 03, 2006

ABC's Bob Woodruff blogs from Iran

Bob Woodruff is in Tehran, Iran, reporting for World News Tonight, and has been keeping a reporter’s notebook with daily updates on his trip:

(Watch Woodruff's report "Being Young in Iran: Young Iranians show defiance, frustration in a country of limited freedom" here.)

Day One: For Americans it's annoying flying into Iran. They take our passports and tell us to sit. After an hour they take us to a little room and fingerprint us. They do this they say because the US government makes Iranians do the same thing when they come to America. That sounds fair I suppose...

Day Two: At the city's racecar track, we find something that surprises us, women racing against men. It's one of the few sports, skiing is another, that they can enjoy together. Trackside, young people eat fast food, watch sports on TV and play pool. One racer there tells me the country is like a balloon, that the government has to let a little air out here and there or else it would explode...

Day Three: I've been to hundreds of cities around the world as a reporter and I've never had any newspaper take note of it. But there it was with information on our whole crew and what we'd be doing. It says something about how infrequently American reporters come here, especially to anchor a broadcast as important as World News Tonight, and how big of a deal it is when someone does show up...

Day Four: We got detained for five hours today. Reporting in Iran is not easy. Everything requires advanced permission. If you try to shoot video or take pictures of anything without that permission it is trouble and we found out the hard way...

Kash - There's a very funny account of how Woodruff's British cameraman and soundman were treated upon their arrival in Iran a day earlier than Woodruff and the rest of his crew in the Day One report:

Iranian Officer: "What are you doing here in Iran?
"Matt Green, British Citizen: "I don't know."
Iranian Officer: "Where are you staying?
"James Brolan, British Citizen: "I don't know. Some hotel."
Iranian Officer: "Thank you. Welcome to Iran."!!!