Reporters on the Job

A Baghdad Morning: Staff writer Dan Murphy says he doesn't remember hearing the explosion that rocked Baghdad at about 7 a.m. Wednesday. "I was asleep in my bed. Suddenly I sat bolt upright and wasn't sure why, but I was screaming," Dan says.

He was covered with glass from the windows in his hotel room, but he wasn't injured. A truck bomb had gone off near the Australian Embassy, killing two Iraqis. "The shock wave must have been massive because I'm in a building 200 to 300 yards away, and there's a nine-story building in between. About half the windows in our building and in most of the nearby buildings were blown out," says Dan. "The shock wave shot down the hotel's dirty air shaft, pushing debris out and all over the bathroom."

Dan dressed and went out to investigate. "It was a familiar scene but a lot closer than other bombings. The US First Infantry was first on the scene, and cordoned off the area," he says.

At about the same time, another car bomb went off near the airport, where staff writer Scott Peterson's flight was just arriving. The bombing, one of four in Baghdad Wednesday that killed a total of 26 people, forced him to cool his heels for three hours.

Back at the hotel, Dan went to work on today's story (page 1). He notes that within hours, the windows in his room were replaced. "The guy did six windows in 15 minutes. He says he's been getting a lot of practice lately."

David Clark Scott
World editor

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