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Journalist ‘Apologizes’ for Colleagues

February 8, 1991

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia (AP) _ An American reporter told the Saudi military commander Friday that some colleagues’ questions have endangered soldiers’ lives. Other journalists later criticized the reporter.

During a military briefing by the Saudi officer, the journalist said: ″I would like to apologize, first off, for some of my colleagues for asking questions that might lead to casualties in the future.

″They’re not, they don’t have bad intentions, they just don’t know what they’re doing,″ said the reporter, who later identified himself as Patrick Mackley, a stringer for the Anchorage Daily News.

As other reporters at the briefing groaned, the Saudi official, Gen. Khalid Bin Sultan, replied: ″Are you asking a question or is that a statement?″

After the briefing, several reporters criticized Mackley, with one Canadian journalist yelling: ″Don’t apologize on my behalf 3/8″

Mackley, who said he was a former member of the 1st Army Infantry Division in Vietnam, later said he got ″a little excited″ at the news conference.

The managing editor of the Anchorage Daily News, Pat Dougherty, said Mackley got his credentials as a stringer for the paper but that he had not yet filed a story for the paper.

Dougherty said he was unaware of Mackley’s comments.

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