“There was, at the heart of Reston’s style of journalism, a sense of common purpose with government and political leaders… the preservation of the United States of America.”
—John F. Stacks, author of James B. Reston and the Rise and Fall of American Journalism
In his first assignment as a New York Times Washington correspondent, James (Scotty) Reston won the 1945 Pulitzer Prize for reporting. The exclusive series of articles outlining plans to create the United Nations prompted an FBI investigation, and put Reston on the map as a powerful foreign policy journalist.
Admired by colleagues for the close ties that won him exclusive interviews, Reston was later criticized for being the quintessential Washington insider. Some say that Reston was seduced by the closeness he shared with world leaders, and was persuaded to use his role as a journalist to influence public opinion. His coverage was controversial in the 1961 Bay of Pigs invasion and the infamous 1972 Christmas bombing of North Vietnam.
In addition to his acclaimed coverage of World War II, Watergate and the Vietnam War, Reston wrote several books, including Prelude to Victory, for which he was honored with the 1942 Ohioana Award.