War on Words: Who Should Protect Journalists? Praeger, 2011.

Joanne M. Lisosky and Jennifer R. Henrichsen

Violent criminals and corrupt governmental officials harass, co-opt, and kill local and foreign journalists in countries from Mexico to Afghanistan, to Russia and the Philippines. Staggeringly, there has been little or no prosecution in 89 percent of journalist murders worldwide. Such widespread impunity is arguably one of the greatest threats to press freedom. A number of international organizations and advocates have developed efforts to mitigate this problem, but belligerents continue to act with few restraints and little, if any, accountability. 

War on Words: Who Should Protect Journalists? is an examination of the deteriorating and dangerous environment facing journalists and what stakeholders are doing to address this serious problem threatening democracy worldwide. The authors explore the peril facing journalists, delve into the legal and practical history of press protection, evaluate current safety strategies for journalists, and gather opinions from an array of local and international correspondents and practitioners on how to improve this untenable situation.


  • Provides descriptions of contemporary strategies used to protect journalists in conflict
  • Contains contributions from more than 60 stakeholders interested in the protection of journalists
  • Presents a historical background of international policies, declarations, and resolutions intended to protect journalists
  • Contains 18 vignettes of journalists killed, harassed, or threatened when reporting from Mexico to Gaza to Pakistan and China


  • Provides information that is extremely timely in light of the international community's focus on the current epidemic of journalists being targeted in conflicts
  • Presents the history of press protection and an overview of current press protection strategies
  • Contains interviews that document various stakeholders' opinions on how journalists should be protected
  • Discusses this issue of critical importance with current war reporters