Marcos Uchôa in New Yorkphotos / TV Globo
Published 09/11/2021 07:00
Rio – The biggest terrorist attack of all times turns 20 this Saturday, September 11th. Two decades ago, there was the attack on the Twin Towers, in New York, which killed nearly three thousand people and injured another nine thousand. To show the consequences of this attack in the United States and in the world, Globoplay launches today the original documentary “Portraits of an Endless War”, which will be available even to non-subscribers of the streaming platform. The GloboNews channel airs the first episode this Sunday, the 12th, at 11 pm.
In four episodes, Marcos Uchôa goes through countries like Pakistan, Iraq, Iran, Syria and Lebanon to portray the scenarios in the world before and after the attacks and also the wars that originated after the terrorist act. “It would not be possible to report, in four episodes, all the complexity of each war, each conflict, each country. Even more than 20 years of our recent history. The series is an account of successive crises and wars. And above all, it is the attempt to show the side of people who have suffered and still suffer the consequences of a brutal daily life,” he explains.
“It has dramatic, exotic, touching images; and it also shows the difficulties of working in these situations. No country is limited to its most serious problems and it is important to get out of the stereotype and imagine yourself there, as a person from a family that just wants to live and be happy”, he completes.
The series tells how the Taliban extremist group’s threats to the United States began, as well as recalling details of the day of the attack and the beginning of the Arab Spring, which culminated in a series of popular uprisings in more than 10 countries in the Middle East. Uchôa explains that the withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan and the return of the Taliban to the country will greatly harm the situation of women, in addition to bringing significant changes to cities like Kabul and Herat.
“For those who live in the countryside, in rural areas, who have always been very conservative and who have lived for years with a certain dominance of the Taliban, the changes will not be very big. But for those who live in larger cities, such as Kabul or Herat, the changes can be enormous. Afghanistan will impoverish. All the money that came from Western countries, which last year represented almost half of the government’s budget, is gone. On the other hand, so is the huge corruption that made the previous government so unpopular. It wasn’t by chance that no one took up arms to defend him,” he says.
“For women, it will get much worse. Today the Taliban government presents itself as more moderate. It is interested in transmitting this image. But what about when the media is no longer looking at the country?”, she ponders.
Marcos Uchôa debuted on Globo in 1987 and, since then, has covered a wide range of subjects, such as the Olympic Games, the World Cup, natural disasters and wars. International correspondent in London, England, it was there that Uchôa was when the attack on the Twin Towers took place.
“I was in New York until the 9th of September and arrived in London on the 10th. The next morning, the attacks took place. I saw everything live from the London office together with colleagues and knew that the impact would be enormous for international politics . The series speaks exactly of that”, says the reporter, who has already been through difficult situations in the coverage of the war.
“In Kabul, I was driving by when a Taliban attack on the American Embassy started. There were several explosions, the panic of people trying to flee. It was frightening. In Gaza, Tripoli and Baghdad I had a very tense time, but fortunately I never felt like I escaped by a hairsbreadth. We learn a few things with experience,” he says.
“In general, be wary of too much silence in a city. It is usually a sign of fear for those who live there and see something threatening approaching. Never stray too far from your car, park in the direction of escape”, advises Uchôa, who emphasizes the need to empathize with citizens living in these conflicting territories.
“What makes us good people is the ability to empathize, to feel sorry for the other, even for a stranger. In wars or tragedies like tsunamis, the most difficult thing is to cover hospitals. It’s too hard, traumatic. These are images that you’ll never forget it. And getting upset about things like that is a good sign,” says the reporter, who had never “dreamed” of being an international correspondent or covering wars.
“I never thought about covering wars. It happened. The drama of war in people’s lives reveals stories so important to the world that it’s worth the risk. By temperament, I function well under pressure. I’m calm, I care about others. , I treat local people well and they feel that and help me in my work, they even protect me. It’s been eight wars. I’m a Brazilian going places, talking to people and telling a story with our eyes. Journalism is that.” .