By Tomos Livingstone, The Western Mail, Cardiff, Wales
icWales, The National Website of Wales, Thursday, June 26, 2003
RELATIVES of a legendary Welsh journalist have joined a campaign to strip
the Pulitzer Prize from the man who tried to ruin his reputation.
Gareth Jones, who wrote for The Western Mail in the 1930s, first exposed the
Ukraine famine, in which millions of people died, in a series of articles in
March and April 1933. But the New York Times's Moscow correspondent
Walter Duranty rubbished Jones's claims.
Now a campaign, kick-started by Ukranian exiles who see the famine as the
greatest disaster in their history, is aiming to strip Duranty of the
Pulitzer Prize he was awarded in 1932.
Duranty strenuously denied that Stalin's Five-Year-Plan was responsible for
causing the famine, which Ukranians know as the Holdomor.
Mr Jones's niece, Dr Siriol Colley, and her son Nigel Colley have written a
letter to the committee which awards the prize. The committee is already
understood to be reviewing the award, and there have been calls for it to be
given to Jones instead.
Jones, born in Barry, also worked as a secretary to David Lloyd George and
had a glittering journalistic career before being murdered by bandits in
Mongolia - on the trail of another story - in 1935, aged just 29.
It was revealed at the weekend that Duranty, who died in 1957, was on a list
of suspected communist sympathisers passed to the Foreign Office in the
1930s by writer and journalist George Orwell.
In their letter to the Pulitzer committee, Dr Colley writes,"The Pulitzer
Prize should be revoked from Walter Duranty, not just for his falsification
of Stalin's ruthless execution of the Five Year Plan of Collectivisation,
but also for his complete disregard for journalistic integrity.
"Through abusing his position of authority as The New York Times's reporter
in the Soviet Union, he villainously and publicly denigrated the truthful
articles of my uncle, and ashamedly did so, whilst being fully aware of the
The Pulitzer committee has only once revoked a prize, in 1981, when a report
by the Washington Post's Janet Cooke was revealed to be false.
The Western Mail, Cardiff, Wales, Thursday, June 26, 2003
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