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Kate Geraghty and Paul McGeough are reknowned photojournalists working for the Sydney Morning Herald.  They were passengers on the Challenger 1, cheap shoot online one of the Freedom Flotilla boats, cheap shoot online when it was attacked by Israeli forces. Cheap shoot online   World hits home at shutter speed http://resources0.news.com.au/images/2010/06/02/1225874/701208-kate.jpg http://www.smh.com.au/world/world-hits-home-at-shutter-speed-20100612-y4ih.html                                                                   THE black-clad Israeli commando looked straight into the camera lens as the flash lit up the swirling smoke from exploding tear gas canisters all around him. It was the photograph that perfectly captured the storming of the Free Gaza Flotilla trying to break the Israeli blockade and get aid into Gaza. Cheap shoot online It was also one of the photographs I took that will never be seen. Then I was hit with this stunning pain in my lower arm, cheap shoot online below the elbow, cheap shoot online and I was thrown a metre and a half across the deck. Cheap shoot online Others had seen a white flash, cheap shoot online I had a burn on my arm and after I checked for blood and found none I realised I had been hit with a stun gun. By then it was too late to do anything else. Cheap shoot online Six armed commandos climbed over the rails and ordered: "Down! Sit down! Get down!" My colleague, cheap shoot online reporter Paul McGeough, cheap shoot online told them: "We're with The Sydney Morning Herald." And another commando said: "We know you're with the Herald." I was stunned but for a completely different reason. Cheap shoot online "Bloody hell – Aussie accents." "No worries, cheap shoot online" the commando said. I was frightened but, cheap shoot online even more, cheap shoot online I was really quite annoyed. Cheap shoot online What were Australians doing behaving like this? We had joined the Free Gaza Flotilla in Crete and had spent time on board the Mavi Marmara before being transferred to the Challenger1 to make way for two German MPs who were hoping to bring political punch to the bigger ship. Cheap shoot online All the time we were making it clear that we were there to observe and not take sides. Cheap shoot online What I saw were people from all countries, cheap shoot online fishing, cheap shoot online flying kites, cheap shoot online singing and praying. Cheap shoot online They were optimistic that they would bring about a change. Some of them asked me what force to expect from the Israeli military. Cheap shoot online I said that they might use tear gas. Cheap shoot online Nobody expected the bloodshed that followed, cheap shoot online with peace protesters killed and wounded in a hail of live gunfire. It happened just before dawn in international waters. Cheap shoot online The flotilla was about 110 kilometres north-west of the Gaza Strip and everyone was keyed up. Cheap shoot online We knew that if anything was going to happen it would be then. Cheap shoot online It was pitch black when McGeough and I set up our laptops and satellite phones on the exposed observation deck. We picked up audio recordings of the Israeli Navy ordering the six-ship flotilla to turn around, cheap shoot online then we saw red dots on the horizon. Cheap shoot online The activists were still praying on the deck of the Mavi Marmara when the Israeli boats started to zoom in. On board people were wearing lifejackets and gas masks when we saw the first explosions on the back of the ship. Cheap shoot online It was a blur of inflatable boats, cheap shoot online explosions and gunfire. Cheap shoot online I had six camera cards and was shooting, cheap shoot online swapping the cards and shooting more. Cheap shoot online I wanted to have shots of the storming of the boat on every card. Cheap shoot online Once I had shots on a card, cheap shoot online I hid it on my body or among my personal possessions. I was shooting as the first commando came aboard the Challenger1. Cheap shoot online It would have been a brilliant shot but that was on one of the cards that I did not manage to save. Cheap shoot online My camera was wrenched from me and a commando swiped up all of our gear as we were marched below deck. We had gone as observers but were now part of the story. Cheap shoot online Back in Australia Herald editor Peter Fray was demanding that we be allowed to do our jobs. Cheap shoot online "Part of our role is to bear witness. Cheap shoot online This is why we sent two of our most experienced foreign correspondents, cheap shoot online Paul McGeough and Kate Geraghty, cheap shoot online to report on the flotilla's efforts to reach Gaza, cheap shoot online" he said. "Paul, cheap shoot online an acknowledged authority on the Middle East, cheap shoot online and Kate, cheap shoot online one of the country's finest news photographers, cheap shoot online were there as witnesses, cheap shoot online to bring the story of the flotilla to Australia and to the rest of the world. Cheap shoot online They had every right to do so. Cheap shoot online We ask that Israel respect their right to do their jobs." It did not work out that way. Cheap shoot online We spent days locked in a detention centre at Beersheba before being deported to Turkey. Cheap shoot online All that time I had three of my camera memory cards carefully hidden. Cheap shoot online I couldn't wait to get out and get the pictures to Australia. Cheap shoot online They ran with McGeough's story on the front page under a "world exclusive" banner. It was the second time in my career I had been detained. Cheap shoot online The previous time was in Burma after I took photographs of the Broken Arrow military band practising for national liberation day celebrations. Cheap shoot online What stuck with me from that trip was seeing dozens of men surrounded by swirling fog in the early hours of the morning working in groups in a paddy field as a man yelled orders at them. Cheap shoot online Journalists are banned and we could not ask whether this was forced labour or what was going on. Freedom is a privilege. Cheap shoot online For all photographers, cheap shoot online getting pictures out of places like that is an honour. Taking the pictures is the easy part, cheap shoot online getting them off the camera, cheap shoot online on to the laptop and then over to the picture desk to be published is the hard part. Growing up in Penola, cheap shoot online South Australia, cheap shoot online I would never have thought my life would revolve around the technical problems of satellite phones and trying to give a voice to people in the most horrific circumstances. Cheap shoot online Until I went to Monivae College in Victoria, cheap shoot online my only ambition as a child was to work in the Coonawarra store or to be a hairdresser. My first overseas assignment for the Herald and The Sun-Herald was covering the aftermath of the Bali bombing. Cheap shoot online I had never seen the aftermath of a bombing and was hugely moved by the suffering of the Australian families. Cheap shoot online It was also the first time I realised the impact a news photograph could have when I witnessed the Australian public's reaction to pictures of bomber Amrozi smiling for the cameras. It was a different type of horror covering the aftermath of the tsunami in Indonesia. Cheap shoot online Standing on one of the main bridges in Banda Aceh, cheap shoot online all I could see for miles was devastation. Cheap shoot online One of the men standing close to me said: "All the gods have got together to show us what hell is like." He was right. Cheap shoot online My job is to show that to the rest of the world. Cheap shoot online More of Kate's piece can be found at http://www.smh.com.au/world/world-hits-home-at-shutter-speed-20100612-y4ih.html