Reflection- Woodward and Bernstein

This session obviously had a lot about the Watergate scandal and how Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein brought down President Richard Nixon.

Both Woodward and Bernstein have gone on to become authors in their own right as well, Woodward has written 16 books on American politics, 12 of them have been bestseller’s, but both are obviously indelibly linked with Watergate.

These two investigative reporters gave possibly the finest piece of journalism to the world, with the possible exception of Michael Buerke’s Ethiopia report in 1984, to bring down Nixon.

At the time they were relatively obscure reporters and Watergate was originally meant to be just another story.

The work they did on Watergate earned a Pulitzer Prize for Public Service for the Washington Post in 1973.

Gene Roberts, the former executive editor of The Philadelphia Enquirer and former managing editor of the New York Times has called their work on Watergate “Maybe the single greatest reporting effort of all time.”

Apart from Watergate Woodward is also known for being the Post’s main reporter for their coverage of the September 11 attacks in 2001, coverage which led to another Pulitzer Prize for the paper for National Reporting.

Bernstein went on to work for ABC News 1980 to 1984 and was first to report during the Israeli invasion of Lebanon that Ariel Sharon had “deceived the cabinet about the real intention of the operation- to drive the Palestinians out of Lebanon, not to establish a 25-Kilometer security zone, North from the border.”

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Reflection- Don McCullin

What I have learnt thanks to the session about Don McCullin is that he is possibly the best war photographer of modern journalism.

I have found that he covered wars from Vietnam in the 1960’s through to Lebanon in the 1980’s, it seems his major regret was not covering the Falklands conflict.

He worked for The Times and Sunday Times from 1963 but was eventually forced to resign after the Thomson family sold the paper to Rupert Murdoch in 1981, he did carry on until 1983 but with Murdoch pushing the editorship in a different direction there was no place for this wonderful photojournalist.

McCullin’s work is thoroughly compelling, he obviously focuses a lot on human suffering and sacrifice but there are also some very candid shots of everyday things like British landscapes or someone out walking their dog.

Some of his work in Northern Ireland is very ingratiating and tell stories on their own, the same can be said of some of his other work like in Cambodia and Lebanon.

He was obviously affected by the things he saw in various theatre’s of war around the world.

Don McCullin obviously gave a voice to the people he was covering and he shows his own great resolve with the images he captures.

A photo he took of a man playing the lute while stood over the body of a dead girl in Lebanon earned him a death threat which he said he felt honoured about so he is obviously also very corageous.