Sunday, February 15, 2015

Arnaud de Borchgrave, Former Washington Times Editor In Chief, Dies At 88

The Washington Times, where I'm a contributor, reports that Arnaud de Borchgrave has died.

Arnaud de Borchgrave, former editor in chief of The Washington Times and a celebrated foreign correspondent who covered 17 wars and became the confidant of dozens of world leaders, died Sunday at a hospice in Washington after a lengthy illness with cancer. He was 88.

Mr. de Borchgrave was editor in chief of The Times from 1985 until he retired in 1991. He had earlier been the chief foreign correspondent for Newsweek magazine for 25 years. He presided over The Times during a period of great growth, both in circulation and in influence at the White House and on Capitol Hill, far beyond its circulation numbers.

He was president and chief executive officer of United Press International after he retired from The Times, and was editor at large for both publications at the time of his death. After he retired from the newspaper he became the director of transnational projects for the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS).

He is survived by his wife, Alexandra Villard de Borchgrave, an award-winning photographer who often accompanied her husband on his globe-trotting trips.

You can read the rest of the piece via the below link:

Newsmax also offered a piece on the passing of de Borchgrave.

In 1980, de Borchgrave co-wrote with Robert Moss the international best-selling novel "The Spike," a political thriller involving an American journalist whose exposés on the KGB are mysteriously spiked by editors who have become agents of influence under sway of the KGB.

The best-selling book and Ronald Reagan's election victory combined to bolster de Borchgrave's standing in journalistic circles. Sensing a fellow staunch anti-Communist, the president reportedly tried to appoint de Borchgrave to two ambassadorships, one to Tunisia and one to France. But de Borchgrave politely declined both appointments to focus on his journalistic endeavors. According to his biography, he resigned from Newsweek in 1980.

When de Borchgrave took over the newsroom of The Washington Times in 1985, Reagan called to offer his congratulations. At the Times, de Borchgrave's tireless work ethic was soon on full display. He knew his mammoth competitor The Post, his former employer at Newsweek, could outspend his newsroom many times over. To compensate, he labored tirelessly to single-handedly reverse the newspaper's fortunes, often sleeping overnight on the convertible sofa in his office.

In an effort to motivate the Times staff, shortly after taking the helm he recounted his experiences in the Royal Navy. "My skippers seldom left the bridge," he told them. "I see myself as your new captain on the bridge."

You can read the rest of the piece via the below link:

Note: In addition to reading Mr. Borchgrave's interesting columns, I also read The Spike, his  espionage/politico/journalism thriller.

I loaned the book to someone and never got it back, so I ordered a copy from and recently reread it. It held up. The Spike is a good thriller, as was his follow-up thriller Monimbo.

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