Why the Media Blackout in Richard Engel’s Disappearance?

Portrait of Foreign Correspondent Richard Engel by Artist Katherine Trunk for The Brenner Brief

Portrait of Foreign Correspondent Richard Engel by Artist Katherine Trunk for The Brenner Brief

NBC News Correspondent Richard Engel and his Turkish colleague Aziz Akyavas have been missing in Syria since Thursday, according to sources in the Turkish media. NBC had initially ordered a  media blackout of the story for security reasons, but according to John Cook at Gawker, the actual reasons remain dubious. According to Cook, there was “in practice no blackout.” He also notes that there were posts by Breitbart and Xinhua as well as numerous large Turkish media outlets before he posted Gawker’s piece.

Engel’s career to this point has been prolific and decorated, having received five News & Documentary Emmy awards, the David Bloom, Overseas Press Club, and Daniel Pearl Awards for his coverage of the Afghan war. He has also received two Peabody Awards, and many others.

When news of his disappearance became public, journalists from all outlets and both sides of the political aisle voiced support and prayer requests for the missing journalists. Engel’s last Twitter post was Dec.1. There were approximately “1000 tweets per minute” on the story one afternoon, according to Gawker.

It’s enticing to speculate on the true reason(s) for NBC’s blackout order. I can’t help but think it is because our President’s beloved Islamic usurpers might be cast in a bad light if it became known they had kidnapped or murdered two journalists.Time will tell.

Hopefully, the truth about the “Arab spring” and our executive branch’s role in it  will become known to those still in the dark. The Brenner Brief would like to offer prayers for Richard Engel, Aziz Akyavas, and their families.




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