Thursday, November 20, 2014

The VIETNAM WAR...the Press guys (some) and Hal's response!

AP's Horst Faas...legend
Our friend Hal...a Viet Nam vet has suggested I give you the dope on some of the more illustrious names I encountered in my three trips to Saigon. (See his response at end of this post)
   Dan Rather...He was with CBS but still far away from superstardom as Walter Cronkite’s anchor replacement.  Dan and I were high atop the Caravelle Hotel (CBS had offices in it) recording one of my long form shows...lasting about a half hour. The reel to reel tape kept sticking because of the heat and Dan while he was answering my questions had to place pressure on the take up reel to keep it going around.  Fun times in the War Zone there.  Nice Guy...saw him later in Cleveland...still a nice guy.  He was just wrong about the JFK shooting.
   Howard K. Smith...with ABC News and having dinner alone on top of the Caravelle.  I introduced myself and he invited me to join him. Can’t remember what was discussed but probably centered around war coverage.  Another gentlemen.
Ted to ABC News...(no comment)
   Peter Arnett...think he was with AP then but he was fun to be around and not at all like the ogre he was dubbed with after the Iran scoop...CNN scoop...the bombs of Baghdad reported LIVE to the world. Peter was one of those “hail fellow well met guys”...we had them in the press too.
   Welles Hangen...NBC News. Made the mistake of taking the elevator in our building and got stuck for it!.  After we got him out we warned him...never take a French made elevator or try to call on a French made phone!  Welles was an excellent of the best ever...based in Hong Kong but died with his crew members in Cambodia later.
   Liz Trotta...NBC News. Liz arrived on special assignment from New York and shook the bureau up for about a week.  Demands...coverage priorities that kind of thing.  She was a “star” reporter for the network and acted the part. Her subject was Agent Orange as I recall. Not much contact with us underlings.
She was best friends with my boss at NBC News Russ Tournabene and I would have them both on my national radio show in later years.
  Horst Faas.....Pulitzer winning photog with AP and in the office next to NBC News. He was one of the great war photographers in history and I was almost afraid to speak to him.  Turns out he was just down to earth like Arnette but not as outgoing.  Never got him to take my picture for my history!  Damn.
So...some of the press superstars I encountered in my trips to Vietnam 1966 & 67 & 69-70.

.......for more on the great Horst Faas click this link:

.......for more on Welles Hangen NBC News click here:

Hal says:

> Just read the VN VIPs post and the repost.
 Liked 'em both. Arnett was a reporter for AP, UPI or some organization then. CNN was an '80s 
 Met him, talked a few times, just casual stuff, liked him and never considered 
his Iraq reporting wrong. It just wasn't flattering to the coalition, but not 
tough enough on Sadam H. to keep people happy. 
Truth be known, his reporting 
probably provided more valuable, yet unintentional 
intelligence than DC ever wanted to admit.
 Must have missed the Doc post when I read the past 
blog entries when I finally 
found you and your blog I was an early addict to CSPAN and often wondered what the pink sheets were. A 
few times in DC, saw, as Walt Kelly called, 'Congersmen' walking around carrying 
or reading them. Wrongly figured they were legislative cheat sheets. Just 
slightly wrong, if you stretch it.

thanks for the idea, Hal and the response

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