‘The Blaze’ Suspends Reporter Who Fired Shots at Islamic State

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By Jillian Kay Melchior | 10:29 am, December 12, 2016

The Blaze has suspended a correspondent who boasted about shooting at Islamic State fighters in Iraq while on assignment, saying that it potentially puts other journalists in danger.

“Exclusive: TheBlaze’s Jason Buttrill shoots at ISIS members and shares footage from the Mosul front,” reads the headline of the controversial story, which was posted last week and remains live. Video footage depicts Buttrill, a former marine, shooting at least six rounds at the Islamic State.

Buttrill also posted a photo of himself shooting to Twitter, bragging: “Major bucket list completed. Shoot at #ISIS ? Check!”

But foreign correspondents and journalists responded with alarm, suggesting Buttrill’s behavior on the front line was unethical and dangerous.

For instance, Jason Stern of the Committee to Protect Journalists, tweeted: “Jason, journalists are detained and killed all over the world over false accusations of being combatants. This doesn’t help.”

Buttrill has since apologized for his behavior.

In a statement, the Blaze’s managing editor told Politico: “Last night, I failed to appreciate the gravity of the subject matter, and let it past my usual filter. That was a mistake.”

Buttrill is being pulled from his assignment in Iraq, said Mercury Radio Arts, which owns the Blaze.

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