Slain Jewish journalist honored by ‘Time’

Among this year’s honorees is Gerald Fischmann, a Jewish journalist who worked at Baltimore’s Capital Gazette newspaper.

December 13, 2018 02:48
2 minute read.
Candles representing the slain journalists of Capital Gazette sit on display during a candlelight vi

Candles representing the slain journalists of Capital Gazette sit on display during a candlelight vigil held near the Capital Gazette, the day after a gunman killed five people inside the newspaper's building in Annapolis, Maryland, U.S., June 29, 2018.. (photo credit: REUTERS/LEAH MILLIS)


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Paying tribute to the bravery of journalists who have sacrificed their lives in the pursuit of truth, Time magazine released its annual Person of the Year cover.

Its choice for 2018? A group of journalists it called “The Guardians.”

Among this year’s honorees is Gerald Fischmann, a Jewish journalist who worked at Baltimore’s Capital Gazette newspaper. He and four of his colleagues – Rob Hiaasen, John McNamara, Rebecca Smith and Wendi Winters — were gunned down in a newsroom shooting.

Time celebrated the staff of the newspaper, championing the cause of local journalism and the staff’s ability to produce a newspaper the day after the tragedy.

“Still intact, indeed strengthened after the mass shooting, are the bonds of trust and community that for national news outlets have been eroded on strikingly partisan lines, never more than this year,” Karl Vick, author of the cover story, who previously reported out of Time’s Jerusalem bureau, wrote.

The magazine also included Jamal Khashoggi, the prominent Saudi-American columnist who was dismembered and killed after entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

“...The crime would not have remained atop the world news for two months if not for the epic themes that Khashoggi himself was ever alert to, and spent his life placing before the public,” Vick wrote.

“His death laid bare the true nature of a smiling prince, the utter absence of morality in the Saudi-US alliance and – in the cascade of news feeds and alerts, posts and shares and links – the centrality of the question Khashoggi was killed over: Whom do you trust to tell the story?”

Other featured journalists were Maria Ressa, a former CNN reporter who created an investigative news site in the Philippines before the government revoked her license and accused her of tax evasion, an allegation she has denied.

Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo, Reuters journalists in Myanmar, were investigating the deaths of 10 Rohingya before being jailed and sentenced to seven years.

“In 2018, journalists took note of what people said, and of what people did,” Vick wrote. “When those two things differed, they took note of that, too. The year brought no great change in what they do or how they do it. What changed was how much it matters.

President Donald Trump was this year’s runner-up for the cover, after being selected in 2016 for “forging a legacy that may be as much about the resistance he engenders as the goals he pursues.”

Robert Mueller, leading a special investigation into Russian interference in the US election, was the third place selection.
Last year, Time honored the “silence-breakers,” women who spoke out against sexual violence, “for giving voice to open secrets, for moving whisper networks onto social networks, for pushing us all to stop accepting the unacceptable.”

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