BBG Watch Commentary

There are many great and talented reporters and broadcasters working at the Voice of America (VOA). While the organization is currently experiencing a deep crisis due to years of mismanagement by VOA and International Broadcasting Bureau (IBB) executives, individual VOA journalists still produce great programs and hope for a better future.

VOA journalists tell BBG Watch that some of them have met with or heard from new Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) members and are hopeful that they will take action to reform VOA news management and address employee morale issues.


VOA Special Examines Kennedy Legacy Through The Eyes Of Key Witnesses

VOAKennedySpecialA rare interview with the U.S. Secret Service agent who jumped onto the back of President John F. Kennedy’s limousine in the moments after he was shot in 1963, highlights a powerful new Voice of America TV special marking the 50th anniversary of the assassination.

The 30-minute program, John F. Kennedy: A Legacy Remembered, revisits one of the country’s darkest days through exclusive conversations with witnesses, journalists, historians, and family members. [video clip here]

“This special, which will air around the world on the Voice of America, weaves together a poignant and powerful narrative of what the nation – and the world – experienced that fateful day,” says VOA Director David Ensor.

The film will air on VOA satellite streams beginning on November 20th. It will also be shown at the Newseum in Washington, D.C., on Friday, November 22nd, at 12 p.m.

The special includes an interview with former Secret Service Agent Clint Hill, whose leap onto the back of President Kennedy’s limousine is one of the indelible images of the assassination. Hill describes hearing the shots ring out and seeing the president as he was struck by a bullet.

Along with agent Hill, there are interviews with journalists, historians, and Kennedy family members, who were interviewed by VOA at the Newseum, which houses the renowned JFK exhibits Three Shots were Fired and Creating Camelot.

The special includes Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, President Kennedy’s niece, who reflects on what her family and the country lost that day in Dallas, and CBS newsman Bob Schieffer, then a reporter for a Fort Worth newspaper. Also featured, Kennedy advisor Harris Wofford, author Thurston Clarke, and reports from VOA domestic and overseas reporters, including VOA political correspondent Jim Malone.

Voice of America will also air this month (starting November 23rd), the critically acclaimed Kennedy documentary, Years of Lightning, Day of Drums, produced by the former U.S. Information Agency in the 1960s. The documentary is narrated by Gregory Peck.

[video clip here]