In a real-time reminder of the dangers of covering international conflict, CNN anchor Sara Sidner was reporting live from the West Bank city of Ramallah when a man accosted her on-air to voice criticism of the network’s coverage of the Israel-Hamas War.
“You are genocide supporters. You are not welcome here, genocide supporters,” said a man who came up to Sidner while she was in the middle of reporting on air. “Fuck CNN! Fuck CNN! Genocide supporters.” The scene was transmitted live during “CNN This Morning,” the Warner Bros. Discovery-backed network’s regular A.M. program
Sidner maintained her composure, but there were a few moments on screen when CNN’s cameras appeared to be forced back from her. Security personnel were seen moving in to her position, and, after a few moments, escorting her away from the scene. She continued to respond to anchor Erin Burnett, on the ground in Tel Aviv even as she was walking away.
“We’re fine.” said Sidner, flanked by security agents. “But what you are seeing is the heightened fear, anger, frustration with what is happening in general.”
Sidner is a former international correspondent who has lived in the region and covered Israel and Gaza for years, dating back to 2014. She was part of a team that won a Peabody award for CNN’s coverage of the Arab Spring, and has been recognized in the past for work done in Libya while reporting in the midst of rebel fighters during the fall of Tripoli. In 2011 Sidner shared the Achievement of the Year Award from SKY WFTV Women in Film & Television in the United Kingdom for her war coverage in Libya.
Alyssah Farah Griffin, the former Trump White House staffers who is now a CNN contributor, praised Sidner on social media, citing incredible composure and poise.”