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Posts Tagged ‘Martin Fletcher’

NBC’s Martin Fletcher ‘Walking Israel’

NBC News correspondent Martin Fletcher has a new book out about a topic he’s been reporting on for 27 years: Israel.

The ceaseless struggles depicted in “Walking Israel” mimic his earlier book, “Walking the Bible,” but with a distinct focus on Israel.

“The reason I wrote the book is that I believe this view of Israel is too narrow,” Fletcher tells TVNewser. “I want people to understand that Israel gets a raw deal. That Israel is a much nicer place than the country they hear about.”

Fletcher officially left NBC News late last year after 32 years with the network, but he returned earlier this year to report on an as-needed basis.

“(Israel) has terrible problems that it must urgently solve and the book deals with them from a fresh perspective,” says Fletcher. “But people always ask me whether it’s safe to visit Israel. Then a week after arriving they call and say, wow, this is such a great place, I had no idea. That’s what I wanted to write about: that great place about which people have no idea.”

Audio From NBC Nightly News Heard on the CBS Evening News

We’re pretty sure the CBS Evevning News would like to have the viewership of America’s #1 evening newscast, NBC Nightly News, but this is no way to do it.

In one of the weirdest things ever to occur on the evening newscasts, last night on the CBS Evening News, Katie Couric tossed to correspondent Mark Strassman as he fronted a live shot from Port Fourchon, Louisiana on the latest on the oil spill. But instead of hearing Strassman, CBS viewers heard the audio from NBC Nightly News.

Lester Holt, filling in for Brian Williams was tossing to correspondent Martin Fletcher who was leading the broadcast live from London on the spy swap story.

When CBS News realized what was going on, they quickly ran Strassman’s produced piece. There was no mention of the audio snafu when Strassman tossed back to Couric.

It’s no secret the broadcast networks watch and even listen to each other’s newscasts when they go live at 6:30pmET, but for audio from one network to be heard live on another? That seems to be a first.



Video after the jump…

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Martin Fletcher Leaving NBC News

M Fletcher.jpg First On TVNewser: NBC News Tel Aviv bureau chief and correspondent Martin Fletcher is leaving the network, TVNewser has learned. Fletcher has been with NBC for 32 years.

“Frankly, I’m rather shocked at the idea, even though I initiated it!” Fletcher tells TVNewser. “At the same time, I’m looking forward thoroughly to getting on to something I want to do, which is writing my third book, a novel.”

NBC News president Steve Capus tells TVNewser, “While Martin has decided to take some time to focus on his successful career as an author, NBC News will always be his home and we are excited about some future projects that we will work together on. Martin’s role in NBC News’ coverage of the Middle East has been tremendous and while we hate to see him move off the hot seat, we are thankful to be in a position that allows our friend to focus more on his writing, while we continue our exceptionally strong coverage of this region.

“On behalf of all of us at NBC News, thank you Martin for your dedication and friendship through the years.”

NBC says a replacement for Fletcher will be named shortly.

Fletcher recently toured the U.S. to mark the paperback release of his 2008 memoir, Breaking News. His second book, due out next fall with the working title Walking Israel: A Personal Search for the Soul of the Nation, looks at the country’s people and places — “Israel as it is,” Fletcher says.

His last day at NBC is Thursday, although his final report may have come on Christmas Day, when he filed from Rome on Pope Benedict XVI.

“I just consider myself a really lucky guy,” Fletcher says about his career. “Both in terms of what I experienced — the places I went to and the things I saw — and the fact that I got out of it alive and healthy…I really do feel just very fortunate that I had a wonderful career where I enjoyed doing what I wanted to do, and always having the sense that I was doing some good along the way. It was a great combination.”

Earlier: Martin Fletcher On Reporting News “As Close-Up As Possible”

Special Climate Change as Copenhagen Conference Begins

tricktruth_12-7.jpgAs scientists and world leaders head to Copenhagen this week for the Climate Conference, you can expect some special coverage from the networks.

Tonight, Campbell Brown anchors special coverage in her CNN program at 8pmET titled, “Global Warming: Trick or Truth,” which will feature special reports, expert panels, and interviews discussing the conference and the “climate-gate” controversy. She will continue to report on developments throughout the week.

Also, NBC “Nightly News” will be airing a series of international reports throughout the week on climate change from Ian Williams in Bangladesh, Anne Thompson in Peru, and Martin Fletcher in Kenya. On Wednesday, Al Gore is sitting down with MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell during “Andrea Mitchell Reports” to discuss recent developments.

As we reported over the weekend, ABC News has Bob Woodruff in Copenhagen for special reports this week also.

A special edition of “BBC World News America” will be co-presented live tonight from Copenhagen by environment correspondent David Shukman.

Martin Fletcher On Reporting News “As Close-Up As Possible”

Fletcher 1.jpg“The way to tell a story is all about the people,” NBC News Tel Aviv bureau chief and correspondent Martin Fletcher told an audience of about 400 last night in suburban Chicago, describing how he approaches journalism. “It’s very important to me to be as close-up as possible.”

TVNewser was there as Fletcher spoke in Northbrook, part of a 23-city book tour this month to mark the paperback release of his 2008 memoir, Breaking News. He told the crowd of his nearly 40 years in journalism — 32 with NBC — and his experiences in some of the world’s most dangerous hot spots.

Take an incident almost 30 years ago, on November 15, 1979. In Tehran reporting on the 53 American hostages at the U.S. embassy, he too was taken by Iranian militants. Held for nine hours, Fletcher was transported to the same embassy, making him the first television correspondent inside the occupied building, though not by his choosing.

BN Cover.JPGThe episode “wasn’t scary at all,” he tells TVNewser. “I don’t take risks, and I don’t go into dangerous situations,” he explains. “However, my definitions of risk and danger may well be different from most people!”

More from Fletcher about foreign news coverage, and his next book — plus additional photos, after the jump…

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Will the Real Martin Fletcher Please…

…add a photo to your Wikipedia page.

At 10:35amET on CNN, Heidi Collins interviewed London Times reporter, Martin Fletcher about the Lockerbie Bomber.


Unfortunately, that photo is of NBC News Middle East correspondent Martin Fletcher, not London Times’ Martin Fletcher. Same goes for that bio info. Soon after, CNN switched the on-screen bio to the Fletcher in question, but the picture stayed. You always have to be soo fancy with your graphics, CNN.

martin_fletcher_NBC_8-24.jpg martin_fletcher_real_8-24.jpg
NBC News’ Martin Fletcher London Times’ Martin Fletcher?

Israel-Gaza Ground War Changes Cable Plans

CNNGaza_1.3.jpgThe cable news channels have been covering breaking news from Gaza for much of the afternoon. The official word of Israeli Defense Force ground troops moving in to Palestinian territory was reported around 1:40pmET this afternoon, but had been expected for days.

Fredricka Whitfield anchored much of the afternoon on CNN with Don Lemon picking up at 5pmET.


Fox News correspondent David Lee Miller is along the border. Viewers could see IDF troops on the move behind him during his live shots. FNC tells TVNewser they will preempt regular programming until 7pmET at which point Fox Report will air. The network has added two live hours of Geraldo at 8pmET and 10pmET which will cover the crisis.

MSNBCGaza_1.3.jpgMSNBC interrupted its afternoon documentaries just after 1:30pmET and has been in live coverage since. Peter Alexander, who anchored the morning show as well, was joined by Chris Jansing at 2pmET from Los Angeles. Contessa Brewer took over for Alexander at 5pmET. With the NFL on NBC there is no Nightly News so network correspondents including Tom Aspell, Martin Fletcher and Andrea Mitchell continue to report for the cable channel.

As for the broadcast networks, it appears CBS News did not have a correspondent in Israel or inside Gaza. SKY News correspondent Dominic Waghorn reported for the CBS Evening News from along the border. For ABC’s “World News,” Miguel Marquez reported from Jerusalem and Simon McGregor-Wood was in Sderot, Israel, near Gaza.

> Update from a reader: CBS Radio correspondent Robert Berger has been filing reports from Jerusalem during the on-the-hour casts all day…

The Ticker: Scarborough, Stahl, Fletcher

> The New York Daily News’ David Hinckley discusses the opening day of Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski‘s WABC radio show, describing it as “closer to the Imus model.”

> Lesley Stahl‘s double-length oil-related report from Saudi Arabia helped 60 Minutes to another top 10 finish for the week, placing it #7 overall with 13.79 million Total Viewers.

> PBS’ “Worldfocus” features NBC News correspondent Martin Fletcher‘s report from Africa on the situation in Zimbabwe — the first report by a “Big 3″ correspondent for the program.