Another Friendly Fire Incident

I’ve already noted one friendly fire incident from Iraq, but the BBC is running a story about another one that will send chills down your spine. BBC world affairs editor John Simpson was traveling with American Special Forces troops and Kurdish militia when his convoy came under attack by US Air Force F-15s:

As I was looking at [the F-15s] – this must sound extraordinary but I assure you it is true, I saw the bomb coming out of one of the planes – and I saw it as it came down beside me. It was painted white and red… It took the lower legs off Kamaran, our translator, I got shrapnel in parts of my body. I would have got a chunk of shrapnel in my spine had I not been wearing a flak jacket, and it was buried deep in the Kevlar when I checked it.

A potent reminder of what it’s like on the other end of the spear. Simpson’s unflappable Englishness is remarkable, too: when asked by the anchor to recap what happened, he responded “I am sorry to be so excitable. I am bleeding through the ear,” and went right on reporting. A braver man than I, that’s for sure. Be sure to watch the video for the full impact.