Dec 9, 2006
In this podcast we present excerpts of remarks by Max Soliven, publisher of the Philippine Star newspaper, from his presentation to the Public Relations Society of the Philippines at the 13th National Public Relations Congress in Manila on September 28, 2006. I met Max when we both spoke to the PRSP conference, and was impressed to learn of his journalistic career, which began when Vietnam was still called Indochina. As a "newsman in the trenches," Max covered the French military disaster in Indochina, the US military conflict in Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos, and went on to cover insurgencies and uprisings all over Southeast Asia. He was jailed for a time during the Ferdinand Marcos regime in the Philippines, and was charged with criminal libel by President Corazon Aquino for a story his paper published claiming that she hid under a bed during the military coup that overthrew her regime. As publisher of one of the largest newspapers in the Philippines, Max wrote a 2,000 word column six days a week. Max Soliven died of a heart attack in Japan on November 24, 2006. His last column, "Is a jingoistic Japan on the rise under Abe? Or is this aging powerhouse no longer dangerous?" filed from Japan, expressed concern about the rise of a new nationalism in the Japanese government. His newspaper, The Philippine Star, captured his essence in a tribute the next day. Download the podcast here (38.8 mb stereo MP3 file, 00:27:37 duration).