The Center for Public Integrity has won the 2007 Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE) award for online investigative journalism for Collateral Damage: Human Rights and U.S. Military Aid after 9/11 — the 11th time since 1997 that the Center has either won first place or been a finalist for an IRE award!
The Collateral Damage project was led by the Center’s International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), and took more than a year of reporting and research. The project included ten of the world’s leading investigative journalists on four continents. The Center reviewed thousands of pages of foreign lobbying records, U.S. military statistics and reports to create an easily navigable interactive map and sixteen special reports. The project included a comprehensive database of U.S. military assistance, foreign lobbying expenditures, and human rights abuses. The stories, broken down by region, examined the billions of dollars of U.S. military aid spent in the post-9/11 era in Africa, Europe, Middle East, Asia and South America. The project also illuminated questionable foreign allegiances, foreign lobby ties, lack of accountability, and the controversial issues involving extraordinary renditions, torture, and interrogations.
The IRE Judges said that the Collateral Damage project provided, “A comprehensive and compelling examination of US military aid and assistance to foreign countries in a post- 9/11 world. The work of investigative journalists on four continents to track the origins of lobbying efforts and amounts of money involved was impressive by itself. But coupled with the power of an online database, readers were able to view unfiltered data broken into many categories. This made the project extremely accessible and easy to understand.”
Finalists for the award included: