Skip to comments.One Pulitzer That Should Shake the World (Moscow Times: New York Times hid communist crimes)
Posted on 06/15/2003 8:51:20 PM PDT by DPB101
WASHINGTON -- America's most coveted journalism award is the Pulitzer Prize, and The New York Times has collected 89 of them. But now one of those Pulitzers is being challenged because the honored reporter was a fraud.
Is this about Jayson Blair, the whiz kid whose faked articles have deeply embarrassed his paper? Yes and no.
The prize in question was won in 1932 by Walter Duranty for "excellence in reporting" out of the Soviet Union. That same year, the Stalin regime sealed the borders of Ukraine, ordered the confiscation of grain, and engineered a mass famine -- one so neatly political that it stopped precisely at the Ukrainian-Russian internal border.
The Soviets called it "collectivization," the forcing of millions of people into collective farms. Ukrainians in America refer to it as the Holodomor -- roughly, the Famine-Genocide -- and they consciously use a capital "H" in imitation of the Holocaust.
The Holocaust -- the killing of about 6 million Jews, along with some 3 million Soviet POWs and thousands of Gypsies -- is woven into the textbooks, the consciousness and the monuments of nations everywhere.
And the Holodomor? It claimed some 7 million innocents. At its height, while the Soviets exported thousands of tons of grain to the West, Ukrainians were dying at a rate of 25,000 per day. Yet no one has heard of it. Every November, the U.S. president sends a short letter to Ukrainians marking the tragedy. Other than that, it passes virtually unmentioned.
To understand how the Holodomor slipped down the memory hole, one has to look back to the 1930s. The Great Depression was on, and in the West communism was admired or feared. That, plus the Soviet practice of deporting critics, soon filled the Moscow foreign press corps with apologists for Stalin.
Duranty was not alone. (Another apologist, Eugene Lyons of UPI, repented and wrote one of my favorite books, "Assignment in Utopia." Check out chapter XV, "The Press Corps Conceals a Famine," at www.colley.co.uk/garethjones/soviet_articles/assignment_in_utopia.htm)
But Duranty was unusually cynical. He would talk about millions of famine deaths, and then add, "But they're only Russians," and, "you can't make an omelette without breaking eggs." And incredibly, he won the Pulitzer for reporting in 1931 on Stalin's Five-Year Plans.
This year marks the 70th anniversary of the Holodomor, and in January the Ukrainian Congress Committee of America launched a campaign to have Duranty's Pulitzer rescinded. The Pulitzer board is formally studying that. But in the past, the board has split hairs, arguing that Duranty's Pulitzer was for reporting that predated the famine and had nothing to do with it, while The New York Times has taken the position that its own pages have since denounced and debunked Duranty's work, and his Pulitzer is displayed with an asterisk to that effect at Times' headquarters. And that's apparently good enough.
So, a cub reporter publishes a string of articles that plagiarize or embellish upon some pretty minor realities -- and this provokes a monster mea culpa on the front page detailing the paper's sins, followed by the resignations of its editors. Meanwhile, another reporter is known to have been a serial liar, someone who actively worked over many years to cover up the equivalent of the Holocaust -- and The New York Times admits as much, yet feels OK holding on to his Pulitzer.
Doesn't that tarnish the other 88?
Matt Bivens, a former editor of The Moscow Times, writes the Daily Outrage for The Nation magazine. [www.thenation.com]
Gareth Jones is the Welsh reporter who first reported on the Holodomor. His great nephew posted on Free Republic earlier today here:
The Jones family is understandably delighted that Gareth is finally receiving the recognition he deserves (Gareth was only 29 when he killed by bandits in Munchukuo while investigation Japanese expansion into Northern China).
A great archive of articles by Gareth Jones, Malcolm Muggeridge and the notorious 1933 "omelet" Moscow dispatch by Walter Duranty is at the Jones website here:
And if history and the recording of truth relied upon the American "mainstream newsmedia", a helluva lot more than that would "slip" down the memory hole!
"Doesn't that tarnish the other 88?"
Yes, of course, but that's far from the only thing.
And so much for that "newspaper of record" schtik.
Truth itself is the only "newspaper of record"!
Yes, and they're still at it.
"Indochina without Americans: for most, a better life."
From Kolyma - Land of Gold and Death, by Stanislav Kovalski:
"One dose of Stalin's "truth" was presented to the American Vice-President, Henry Wallace, when in 1944 he visited Kolyma. After the visit he left the country with the absolute conviction that "no such camps existed," in total agreement with the British philosopher, Bertrand Russell. Whatever was shown to the man who held one of the highest offices in the USA he accepted it as the truth and presented it in his book "Soviet Asia Mission." From this book the American reader learned that the gold miners of Kolyma are "big husky young men who came out to the Far East from European Russia," and who were "pioneers of machine age, builders of cities." He was greatly impressed with Kolyma's director Nikishov and his wife Gridassova, with Magadan's cultural life and with the shops full of Russian goods. The truth was that during his three-day stay the chiefs of Kolyma did their best to conceal the factual reality. The wooden watchtowers were pulled down, the prisoners were not allowed to leave their barracks and not even the least aspect of prison life was exposed to the American visitor. He was taken to the only farm in the region, 23 kilometers from Magadan, where well dressed and well fed girls, (police women disguised as swineherds), gave a false impression of the agricultural endeavor in that part of the country. He was also flown to the North, to the mine Berelakh, where he found the state mining to be an impressive enterprise."
"The miners, according to him, were healthy and well-clad men, and more productive than their counterparts in Alaska's Fairbanks. Being served with delicious fresh fish from Kolyma River he offered his compliments to the "presiding chef of the mining camp." The deception was total and successful. The outside world got the firsthand knowledge about Kolyma from the man who deserved his trust. Who would disbelieve or dispute information from the Vice-President of the United States of America, a force for truth and justice? "
Forget who it was--either Harry Dexter White or Lauchlin Currie (both close to FDR and both Soviet agents) went with Wallace on his tour of the Soviet gulag.
Joe McCarthy was right!!
"Indochina without Americans: for most, a better life."
"These people don't value human life like we do."
"Kill a gook for God!"
"The growing hysteria of the administration's posture on Cambodia, seems to me to reflect a determined refusal to consider what the fall of the existing government in Phnom Penh would actually mean.... We should be able to see that the kind of government which would succeed Lon Nol's forces would most likely be a government ... run by some of the best-educated, most able intellectuals in Cambodia."---Senator George McGovern
"The greatest gift our country can give to the Cambodian people is peace, not guns. And the best way to accomplish that goal is by ending military aid now."--Chris Dodd (D-CT)
I give Senator McGovern credit however. When he learned of what the Khymer Rouge were doing, he wanted to send American troops back in. That took some guts even to suggest back then.
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