On October 7, the first I.F. Stone Medal for Journalistic Independence was awarded to John Walcott, now of McClatchy Newspapers. As the Washington bureau chief for Knight Ridder, Mr. Walcott led a team of reporters including Jonathan Landay and Warren Strobel who distinguished themselves for thoughtful, critical and skeptical news coverage of the lead-up to the war in Iraq.
The award ceremony served as an occasion for an assessment of the state of journalistic independence, and an attempt to derive the lessons of the recent past. The highlights of the ensuing discussion were presented by Dan Froomkin of the Nieman Watchdog in “The Lessons of our Failure,” October 17.