TV NEWS LEGEND CRONKITE RECEIVES NEWS WORLD AWARD
Posted on: 2003-10-21
Broadcast news legend Walter Cronkite has received the 2003 News World Lifetime Achievement Award.
The presentation to the celebrated CBS News anchor was made in New York by Canadian consul general Pamela Wallin.
She described Cronkite as the "face and voice of CBS News", which he first joined 53 years ago, becoming its Evening News presenter in 1962.
"He covered and created the icons, and in the process he became one himself," said Wallin, a respected Canadian broadcaster whose career spanned print, radio and TV.
The award presentation was beamed live from New York to News World International 2003 in Dublin. Cronkite, 87 in three weeks time, had hoped to attend the conference but recently hurt his back and was under his doctor's orders not to fly.
Cronkite said no amount of words could describe his disappointment in not being able to be with delegates in Dublin. "I so looked forward to it," he said.
"I appreciate what News World is doing."
Cronkite discussed recent coverage of the Iraq War, telling delegates that some element of pro-US reporting had been inevitable, particularly among journalists embedded with troops.
"The temptation to use the word 'we' is almost inescapable. When you as a correspondent are down there in the foxholes with the troops you are part of the operation. You can't help that. It was the same thing in World War Two, the same thing in Vietnam and the same thing in Korea."
Cronkite said he had not been ashamed of showing sympathy while presenting the news. He memorably announced the assassination of President Kennedy in 1963 with tears welling in his eyes. And he said his expression of an opinion at the end of a CBS News broadcast that America should negotiate an honourable end to the Vietnam War had been an "extraordinary circumstance".
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