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Middle East Crisis: ‘This Week At War’ Host John Roberts Is On The Front Lines

> Update: 10:40pm: A viewer weighs in: “While I think CNN’s ratings would improve if he anchored his own primetime show, I think news consumers are better served, in times like these, with Roberts in the field. His Middle East reporting is the best I have seen on television news — cable or broadcast — and his ability to focus on news gathering allows his reports to be more rich and contextual than those seen on the competition…”

robertsjuly27.jpgJohn Roberts, the anchor of CNN’s newest weekend program (This Week At War), has been reporting from the front lines in Northern Israel this week. The senior national correspondent has delivered compelling live reports for all of CNN’s primetime shows. It’s his first major overseas assignment since joining CNN in February.

On Reliable Sources over the weekend, Roberts said the border was “more dangerous than the initial invasion during the Iraq war.” (He was embedded back in 2003.) In an e-mail Wednesday night, Roberts updated: “I think the danger for journalists is substantially reduced from last week, though we did come under mortar attack yesterday in one of our live positions.”

Roberts is in the Middle East with producer Linda Roth. (Did you know Roth met her Marine husband during the Iraq war in 2003?) Roberts will anchor This Week At War live from the Middle East this weekend…

> “He is an unbelievable reporter who deserves to be more than just a substitute anchor for Anderson of Paula,” a fan e-mailed earlier this week…

> Also: “Roberts will also anchor a special CNN Presents documentary on the lessons learned during the last major multinational engagement in Lebanon — the attack on peace-keeping forces during the Lebanese Civil War in October 1983. CNN Presents: Marine Barracks Bombing will premiere on Saturday and Sunday at 8 p.m. and 11 p.m.,” CNN says…

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