“It was the scoop of the century but he was vilified and lost his job.”

From Connecting, a newsletter written by Paul Stevens for current and former AP journalists:

A renewed effort to recognize the late Ed Kennedy’s reporting of the World War II armistice has been submitted to the Pulitzer board.

Kennedy, Associated Press’ Paris bureau chief, was the first to report Germany’s surrender by using a censor-free telephone to London. It was arguably the scoop of the century. But he was vilified, lost his job with AP and in 1963 died in Monterey after being hit by a sports car.

It took an AP apology more than half a century later, on April 20, 2012, with Kennedy long dead, for the definitive validation of his decision to challenge political censorship and report the news.

“Kennedy did everything right,” said then-president and CEO Tom Curley. “Once the war is over, you can’t hold back information like that. The world needed to know.” Failure to support Kennedy in 1945 “was a terrible day for the AP,” he said.

“This will be the third time we have asked the Pulitzer committee to recognize Kennedy with a special Pulitzer,” said Ray March, co-chair of the Ed Kennedy Pulitzer Project, a national coalition of more than 100 journalists. March worked under Kennedy when he was editor of the Monterey Peninsula Herald.

“It’s not only a special Pulitzer we are seeking. If Kennedy is awarded one it will mean that journalism history, especially the use and protection of the First Amendment will be corrected and recognized and Kennedy will be vindicated,” March said.

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