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posted: 2/26/2014 1:01 AM

Watergate journalist to speak in Naperville

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  • Harry Rosenfeld

    Harry Rosenfeld

By Candace Purdom
Anderson’s Bookshops

A former Washington Post editor who helped oversee that paper's coverage of the Watergate scandal will bring his new memoir, "From Kristallnacht to Watergate," to Naperville.

Harry Rosenfeld, who supervised reporters Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward, will appear at 7 p.m. March 19 at Anderson's Bookshop, 123 W. Jefferson Ave., to discuss his book that also examines his childhood in Hitler's Berlin.

Priority numbers for the book signing line are available at Anderson's with the purchase of Rosenfeld's book.

In his memoir, Rosenfeld describes his years as an editor at the New York Herald Tribune and The Washington Post, two of the greatest American newspapers in the second half of the turbulent 20th century.

As the Post's Metropolitan editor, Rosenfeld managed Woodward and Bernstein as they broke the Watergate story, overseeing the paper's standard-setting coverage that eventually earned it the Pulitzer Prize Gold Medal for Public Service.

In describing his complicated relationship with Post Editor Ben Bradlee and offering an insider's perspective on the unlikely partnership of Woodward and Bernstein, Rosenfeld depicts the tensions and challenges, triumphs and setbacks that accompanied the Post's key role in Watergate, the most potent political scandal in America's history.

Rosenfeld also tells the story of growing up in Hitler's Berlin. He saw his father taken away by the Gestapo in the middle of the night, and on Kristallnacht, the prelude to the Holocaust, he witnessed the burning of his synagogue and walked through streets littered with the shattered glass of Jewish businesses.

After his family found refuge in America, his childhood experiences stayed with him and ultimately influenced his decision to make journalism his life's work.

At a time when newspapers and other media are under financial pressure to cut back on investigative reporting, "From Kristallnacht to Watergate" reminds us why journalism matters, and why good journalism is essential to our democracy.

Rosenfeld is now editor-at-large and a consultant at the Albany Times Union. He is also a member of the newspaper's editorial board.

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