February 22nd, 2012
01:25 AM ET

Video: Marie Colvin's last call to CNN

American journalist Marie Colvin was with a baby in Syria when he died from his wounds. She described the conditions in Homs to Anderson Cooper. Tragically, Colvin was killed shortly after she gave this interview.

Here's a transcript of the conversation:

Anderson Cooper: A reporter was in the room when the child died: Marie Colvin of the Sunday Times of London, who joins us now from Homs. Marie, to be in that room with this young baby passing, we've seen many children killed in this conflict, but to be there, what was that like?

Marie Colvin: It's a very chaotic room. But the baby's death was just heartbreaking, possibly because he was so quiet. One of the first shocks, of course, was that the grandmother had been helping - completely coincidentally - helping in the emergency room, and just started shouting, 'That's my grandson, where did you find him?' And then the doctor said there's nothing we can do. We just watched this little boy, his little tummy heaving and heaving as he tried to breathe. It was horrific. My heart broke.

Anderson Cooper: Do we know how the child died? How he was wounded?

Marie Colvin: We know there's been constant shelling in the city, so I have to say, it's just one of many stories. His house was hit by a shell. He - another member of his family - it's chaos here, but another member of his family arrived later, but after he had died, and said the house had been - the second floor - had been hit. This little boy, obviously it was just one piece of shrapnel that caught him right in the chest.

Anderson Cooper: There are some who will see those images and say we shouldn't show those images, that it's too much. We discuss this all the time. Why is it important, do you think, to see these images? Why is it important for you to be there? Right now you may be one of the only Western journalists in Homs - our team has just left.

Marie Colvin: I had a discussion with your people, Anderson. I feel very strongly that they should be shown. Something like that, I think, is actually stronger for an audience, for someone who is not here, for an audience for which the conflict, any conflict, is very far away. That's the reality. These are 28,000 civilians, men, women and children, hiding, being shelled, defenseless. That little baby was one of two children who died today, one of children being injured every day. That baby probably will move more people to think, 'What is going on, and why is no one stopping this murder in Homs that is happening everyday?'

Anderson Cooper: The regime in Syria claims they're not hitting civilians, that there is no armed conflict, that there is no war inside Syria, that they are basically just going after terrorist gangs.

Marie Colvin: Every civilian house on this street has been hit. We're talking about a very poor popular neighborhood. The top floor of the building I'm in has been hit, in fact, totally destroyed. There are no military targets here. There is the Free Syrian Army: Heavily outnumbered and out-gunned - they have only Kalashnikovs and rocket-propelled grenades. But they don't have a base. There are more young men being killed, we see a lot of teen-aged young men, but they are going out to just try to get the wounded to some kind of medical treatment. So it's a complete and utter lie that they're only going after terrorists. There are rockets, shells, tank shells, anti-aircraft being fired in parallel lines into the city. The Syrian Army is simply shelling a city of cold, starving civilians.

Anderson Cooper: Thank you for using the word "lie." I think a lot of people will want to thank you, because it's a word we don't often hear, it's not often used, but it's the truth in this case. The Syrian regime and their representatives have continually lied, and they have lied on this program to us directly. Marie, you have covered a lot of conflicts, over a long time. How does this compare?

Marie Colvin: This is the worst, Anderson, for many reasons. I think the last time we talked was when I was in Misrata. It's partly personal safety, I guess. There's nowhere to run: The Syrian army is holding the perimeter. And there's just far more ordinance being poured into this city and no way of predicting where it's going to land. Plus, there's a lot of snipers on the high buildings surrounding the Baba Amr neighborhood. You can sort of figure out where a sniper is, but you can't figure out where a shell is going to land. And just the terror of the people, and the helplessness of these families hiding on the first floor. All they can do is hope it doesn't hit them. That's very, very difficult to watch.

Anderson Cooper: And in terms of supplies, medicine, food?

Marie Colvin: Running low. Medicine, there is essentially almost none. The only painkillers at the hospital are paracetamol and ibuprofen, you know just the normal kind of painkillers we would use for a cold or something or a headache. There's operations going on with just that as an anesthetic because the hospitals here, anyone who is shot or has a shrapnel wound is arrested or disappeared, so there's fears they're being killed. Anyone badly wounded is smuggled across to Lebanon. They don't even have rubber gloves. The rubber gloves that the doctors - well there aren't doctors - that the medical staff is wearing, the rubber gloves are ripped. There's one doctor, one dentist and a vet treating the wounded. That's the kind of medical care there is.

Anderson Cooper: Marie Colvin, I know it's impossible to stay safe but please try. Thank you for talking to us.

Marie Colvin: Thanks very much, Anderson.

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Filed under: Syria
soundoff (49 Responses)
  1. marudhamuthu tamilan

    marie colvin lives on in the hearts of all who love justice, especially so for the tamil people

    February 24, 2012 at 12:55 am |
  2. Alicia

    So sad to hear of Maria's death. She was so brave to risk her life to tell of the horrors that are taking place in Syria right now. The story she told of the young boy dying with no medical help was heart wrenching. It was hard to see, but this should cause us all to rise up and shout for an end to this senseless killing. How can we help to end this?

    February 23, 2012 at 8:24 pm |
  3. Leif

    So sad... Does anyone know the baby's name? It would be appreciated.

    February 23, 2012 at 1:39 pm |
  4. Justin

    Watching the death of the two year old boy is something I can't get out of my mind and I ache for the family, even though I have no idea who they are. If anything, her sacrifice in getting that story out will make me love and appreciate my own sons more than ever. May God bless the family of the young boy and bless people like Marie who are willing to get stories like this out, even though it may require the ultimate sacrifice.

    February 23, 2012 at 12:34 pm |
  5. Karin Urban from Berlin/Germany

    I was so moved when Anderson said: "Marie, I know it's impossible to stay safe, but please try".
    She tried invane. I am very sad.

    February 23, 2012 at 11:51 am |
  6. Cahit Oz

    I am speechless after seeing this video. And also horrified that the world is still doing nothing to stop this...

    February 23, 2012 at 8:45 am |
  7. roula

    RIP marie and baby

    February 23, 2012 at 4:48 am |
  8. Shannan

    I see much in the news about nations getting together to "talk" about the problem in Syria....how long will THAT go on? How many more innocent people will have to die while all these nations sit around a table and talk and debate the issue? Seems to me that time for talk is over and there needs to be decided, swift ACTION

    February 23, 2012 at 12:23 am |
  9. Shannan

    I am very heartbroken over this reporters death and that precious little baby.....I am heartsick that the United States has so arrogantly inserted themselves and their belief system of democracry on other nations....and yet does absolutely nothing about Syria....where if there ever was a people, region, town in need of help wouldn't this be the right thing to do???? If nothing is done to help Syria I do fear they turn more than bitter and things could develop into much worse. Where is the United States arrogance and it's big macho military power when it is most needed?????

    February 23, 2012 at 12:14 am |
  10. suzan

    It is horrible what is happening in syria (my country)and i dont know what to do to help.But i want to thank anderson cooper for telling the world what is really happening there of killing children ,women and men without any reason only because they want freedom and to live decent life.All the syrian appreciate your work and God bless you.

    February 23, 2012 at 12:10 am |
  11. Mohamed

    A great loss to humanity, a tremendous courage, what a price to pay to shed light on what' going on in syria. As a Syrian who grew up in Syria and having experienced the brutality of this regime I can not thank you enough for you coverge of Syria . Please don't stop.

    February 22, 2012 at 11:09 pm |
  12. Marie

    Last night, I had listened to your interview with Marie and just wondered what we can do to stop it. It was chilling to wake up and see this news. Anderson, props to you for bringing her testimony to us. RIP, Marie. Please keep up the reporting and the care for Syria that your show is exhibiting.

    February 22, 2012 at 11:06 pm |
  13. susan

    Anderson, I am sorry for the loss of your collegue. The strangest thing happened last night. When you signed off with her last night you said something along the lines of it being impossible for her to be safe, but for her to try. I got such a strange sinking feeling at that time. When I got up this morning and saw she had been killed I couldn't believe it! Things like that don't happen to me, but it did. Hang in there, as I am sure this has greatly impacted you. I greatly admire your humanity and sensitivity. Please don't change.

    February 22, 2012 at 10:43 pm |
  14. Lisa

    Anderson, when you said to Marie Colvin, "i know it's impossible to stay safe, but please try" last night, I got chills...that video of the dying baby made it very clear that she was in terrible danger, and your words proved prophetic. The work that Colvin did, bearing witness to atrocities and exposing them to the world, must not be forgotten.

    February 22, 2012 at 9:30 pm |
  15. Mary Ann Madigan

    Life is brutal in Syria right now. Horrific to see a little child die, very sad that this brave reporter has lost her life. My heart if heavy and I feel so helpless.

    February 22, 2012 at 8:33 pm |
  16. Courtney

    Anderson, please don't let the world forget the pain and suffering of the Syrians. Keep showing the evils of the Assad regime. Don't allow the world to forget the Syrians pain, and definitely do not let them forget Marie.

    February 22, 2012 at 8:16 pm |
  17. Radek

    It's terrible what happened to Marie Colvin, She was a great reporter, but also an adult, knowingly undertook the risk of being in a war zone.
    However, the death of this innocent little boy totally broke my heart. I am a father of two young boys, and that death is bothering me. I feel sorrow and compassion for his family but also the terrible helplessness and – it may seem strange – a sense of guilt.
    I wish I could do something for the family of this boy.
    So I have a great request Anderson: Can you say as you pass condolences to the family of the boy? Do you know how this poor child had a name?

    February 22, 2012 at 5:48 pm |
    • Mohamed

      His first name was Adnan

      February 22, 2012 at 11:11 pm |
  18. ma

    I too watched Marie's report on Anderson last night. Am I alone in thinking this seems a bit more than coincidence? She reports about the death of a child and she too ends up dead on the same day...

    February 22, 2012 at 5:20 pm |
  19. Dawn

    I always watch your airing at 10:00 EST. Her story last night was very moving. I thought to myself before I went to bed, what a strong and courageous woman. She really shouldn't be in such a dangerous environment and I hope she is able to leave soon. When I saw this morning that she had been killed, my heart sank. Rest In Peace Marie Colvin. You are a hero who brought a voice to those unable to speak, and in the end paid the ultimate price. Your work was very important and hopefully some action will come of it. The people of Homs need help and your coverage made a difference.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
  20. Heather Deane Whitehead

    The video and then the killing of its reporter is absolutely devastating.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
  21. Brandy

    Anderon Thank for your continues coverage on this. I am so sick about this horrilbe crisses these poeple are living in. I can't believe the world is letting this happen. We were taught in school about the Holocust in Germany. Now the world is sitting here letting this happen. I can't bare this anymore. I wish I new what to do. I work at a bank and people are sending money to their loved ones in Syria and the government is stealing it from them. We all need to do something. I wish I knew what I could do but I just don't know at this time. I hate sitting here and wondering what will happen next.

    February 22, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
  22. Jen MG

    The last thing my husband and I watch before we go to bed is your show at 10pm and after Marie's emotional report, we turned off the TV and discussed the horrors of what we had seen. To wake up and hear that Marie was killed was as tragic. I hope this doesn't silence the voices that need to be heard from over there. Such sadness. Needless, needless tragedy. Thanks, Anderson for bringing this to light. No other primetime cable show leads with this, and it should be front and center.

    February 22, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
  23. Harry Tzoumas

    Too bad it's an election year here in the USA we can expect thousands more innocent civilians to die before the World even acts like it cares ! Shame on all the Politicians who turn and look the other way, this must really be a Hot Political Potato I have not heard one Presidential candidate mention Syria and the News Media is giving them a break by not asking.

    February 22, 2012 at 12:57 pm |
  24. Essie

    i there.1st of all,i express my deepest heartfelt condolence over the tragically happened incident in Homes and i do hope from the bottom of my heart to be toppled down the violent regime of H.ASAD asap.

    February 22, 2012 at 12:45 pm |
  25. sandra

    Wow, watched her last night. Was struck by her comment that the building she was in had the top floor bombed out and thought then how incredibly unsafe she was, then this. Powerful.

    February 22, 2012 at 12:43 pm |
  26. Eileen Bussey

    How horrible. This madness has to end. Why can't human beings get along? Why do some do unspeakable things? FOR WHAT? I am so sick of wars. Fighting over Religion, land, oil. Its just sickening. If their is a God I pray he puts an end to all this hate and waste of life. My faith is slowly going away. I pray for all who are suffering and have lost their lives or their loved ones. Anderson Cooper is doing the right thing by reporting what is going on. I would like to add that he is one of the few that I trust, that gives us the truth. Keep up the good work. The world needs to see the truth.

    February 22, 2012 at 12:16 pm |
  27. Suzanne

    This is a real video, not a movie, they break the boundaries for movies to scare us, and to feel more real, these are real people, it is real!We should break the boundaries so we know what are fellow brothers and sisters are going through, we are a big family in this world and my heart aches for these victums as if I knew them, thats what we need to focus on.what if it was your child?

    February 22, 2012 at 12:13 pm |
  28. Kathy Giles

    I had no idea who Marie Colvin was but I heard her last night as she told the story of the young boy dying in Syria. How sad that the represive regime of Syria kills children and journalists along with so many of theuir own citizes. A tragedy!

    February 22, 2012 at 12:02 pm |
  29. Diana


    February 22, 2012 at 12:01 pm |
  30. Autumn Chambers

    Thank-you Marie for your pursuit of the truth! Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family and all those affected by by conflicts around the world! You will not be forgotten!

    February 22, 2012 at 12:01 pm |
  31. Chelsea

    This is absolutely tragic and heartbreaking, on all accounts. I, myself, am an aspiring journalist; I'll begin my schooling in the fall, but I've already got some experience in the field, and it scares me whenever I hear of journalists killed in foreign countries, because there's a very good chance I'll be doing the same thing they'll be doing; I'll be in their shoes, with the same risks, fears and chances as them.

    February 22, 2012 at 11:54 am |
  32. Anita

    I pray the Good Lord will bring HIS peace to her family, friends and loved ones ~ but a special prayer for Anderson Cooper. I watched his interview with Ms. Colvin last night & remember him telling her to be safe. I can't begin to imagine his pain right now ~ knowing he had just spoken with her ~ but as I said, I do pray for HIS peace to comfort all those who knew her. She's Home now ~ with the 2-year old boy she was reporting about. God bless them all.

    February 22, 2012 at 11:54 am |
  33. Lyne

    A picture is worth a thousand words. As graphic and as heart wrenching as this video is, it does need to be shown. What all these people are fighting and dying for. R.I.P Marie and to this little boy, and to all the people of Syria who are giving their lives for freedom <3

    February 22, 2012 at 11:46 am |
  34. Paul Constantine

    Anderson; I suggest you interview representatives of the Arab countries, asking why they do not take military action against the Syrian government to stop the killing of civilians.

    February 22, 2012 at 11:43 am |
  35. Beverly Palmer

    We watched the interview/report that Anderson had with Marie Colvin last night with sadness, wondering what can be done to end this horrible situation. I was totally captivated by her words and the video of the little boy who died with no medical aid, and the father who promised to avenge his death. I awoke this morning to hear that Marie Colvin had died. What a terrible waste. What can we do? How can this be happening?

    February 22, 2012 at 11:21 am |
  36. Senn

    RIP Marie Colvin. Your work has shown the world much, and the cost you paid is saddening.

    February 22, 2012 at 11:20 am |
  37. Arlene

    i am shocked and saddened by the death of Marie Colbert. It is ironic that her last report brought and new awareness and sensitivity to the plight of the Syrian people, by focusing on the death of a child, in real space and time.
    She died a hero.
    I hope here death brings a sense of urgency to the international community that decisive action needs to be taken immediately to stop the humanitarian crisis in Syria

    February 22, 2012 at 10:54 am |
  38. Concerned!!!

    The interview last night was so heartbreaking that it reminded me of a loved one on their death bed and standing looking on with that gut wrenching helpless feeling! What a true journalist to bring us this story!!! SMH Only to find out not 24 hrs later now she is gone!!! This is what happens when the WORLD waits on one country to provide assistance!!

    February 22, 2012 at 10:21 am |
  39. Suzy

    As if the story of the baby dying in front of her wasn't enough, now Marie, a bastion of truth, from w/in Syria, has been snuffed out. God rest her brave soul.

    February 22, 2012 at 10:17 am |
  40. Naomi Mutua

    Absolutely heartbreaking. No child, and no one should suffer because of leaders who can't do what is right for their people.
    I hope that his family finds peace, my condolences to them.
    And I hope that Syrians find the peace that is needed in their homes and in their country.

    My condolences to the family and friends of Marie Colvin too.

    February 22, 2012 at 10:04 am |
  41. Dina

    Anderson, we are so sorry for the senseless loss of these brave journalists. What is sad is that this will only mean that the massacre of the innocent people of Homs will continue while the world sits idly by and no one is able to even expose the regime for it's atrocities. We have family in Homs and at least three have watched their homes destroyed, there are regime soldiers living in my father in laws home and those homes that are still standing have been completely looted. We now know so many neighbors and friends who are either killed, injured or missing. We go to sleep and wake up every day with the prayer that no one else has perished, my eight year old prays he will be able to see his elderly grandfather again someday. . My husband will never again sleep in his family home, his childhood photos and possessions all gone. This regime has shown themselves to be the most ruthless and sadistic of humanity. How can the world allow this insanity? Have we learned nothing from the lessons of our past? The people of Homs (over 1 million) are telling us that they are literally being held hostage just waiting to die. This regime is SWIMMING in blood. The only terrorists in Syria are those who are working for the ASSAD regime. The apathy is criminal.

    February 22, 2012 at 9:56 am |
  42. Kiran

    Sad news after hearing her on AC360 last night!

    February 22, 2012 at 9:12 am |
  43. Shimi

    I was passing the TV with AC360 on, which is usual...as I heard Marie Colvin. I came back and stood reverted as I listened to her report. Excellent piece, as always. I interviewed her in Sri Lanka while she was in hospital recovering from the shrapnel wound to her eye while covering the conflict in 2001. The footage was heartbreaking as AC spoke how his team was debating if to show it. But, it is these pictures that Assad's regime doesn't want the world to see. When will all this murder of the innocence stop? what will it take?

    February 22, 2012 at 8:30 am |
  44. Laura Toye

    I watched your broadcast last night of Syria and watched that poor baby die and the father so helpless because of no medical help. It haunted me all night seeing that innocent baby take its last breath, I will never for get it. There has to be something the average person can do to get the U.S. to help stop the slaughter of the Syrian people.

    February 22, 2012 at 8:04 am |
  45. KD

    Rest in peace Marie Colvin and damn the regime who killed you like it slaughters its own people every day. You will be missed.

    February 22, 2012 at 7:29 am |
  46. Alan

    Anderson, there has been sad reports from Homs that Marie Colvin and a French Journalist have been killed in an attack by Syrian government forces.

    February 22, 2012 at 4:24 am |
  47. Alan

    Thank you Anderson for not ignoring what is happening in Syria just like many many other news agencies. I would like to assure you that the number of children, women and elderly being killed is way way more than what Merida gets as only those that their names and identity is confirmed are counted.

    February 22, 2012 at 3:24 am |
    • james

      Just like many many other news agencies? Really? Which news agencies apart from state-run syrian agencies? you are nuts. Every news agency in america is covering syria with a fine tooth comb.

      February 22, 2012 at 8:21 pm |