29 Jun Charles Krauthammer – Columnist & Speaker
The late Meg Greenfield, editorial page editor of The Washington Post, called Charles Krauthammer’s column “independent and hard to peg politically. It’s a very tough column. There’s no ‘trendy’ in it. You never know what is going to happen next.”
A column, says Mr. Krauthammer, is not just politics. “My beat is ideas, everything from the ethics of cloning to strategy in Afghanistan. I also do public service, like reading Stephen Hawking’s books and assuring my readers that `It is not you, they are entirely incomprehensible.”
Perhaps Mr. Krauthammer’s most important mission as a columnist is to challenge conventional wisdom. Hence eight years of columns warning that the Oslo peace accords were a fraud and a deception, doomed to fail. Alas, he was proved correct.
Charles Krauthammer was born in 1950 in New York City. He grew up in Montreal and was educated at McGill University (B A. with First Class Honors in Political Science and Economics, 1970), Oxford University (Commonwealth Scholar in Politics at Balliol College, 1970-71), and Harvard University (MD, Harvard Medical School, 1975).
From 1975-78 he practiced medicine as a Resident and then Chief Resident in Psychiatry at the Massachusetts General Hospital His scientific papers, including his co-discovery of a form of manic-depressive illness, are still frequently cited in the psychiatric literature. In 1978, he quit psychiatry and came to Washington to serve as a science adviser in the Carter Administration and, later, speechwriter to Vice President Walter Mondale. In 1981, he joined the staff of The New Republic where he was an essayist and editor from 1981 -88. In the mid-eighties he began writing a weekly syndicated column for The Washington Post, which now appears in more than 100 newspapers, and a monthly essay for Time magazine.
In his first full year as a syndicated columnist, he won the Pulitzer Prize (Distinguished Commentary, 1987). His New Republic essays won the highest award in magazine writing, the National Magazine Award for Essays and Criticism (1984). In 1997, the Washingtonian magazine named him among the top 50 most influential journalists in the national press corps.
He has won awards for his writing on everything from the economics of oil (the Champion/Tuck Media Award for Economic Understanding) to religion in civil society (People for the American Way, First Amendment Award). Mr. Krauthammer received the Guardian of Zion Award from Bar-Ilan University in May 2002. His essays have appeared in dozens of anthologies on subjects ranging from nuclear deterrence to gay marriage. He has been writing about medical ethics for The New Republic since 1979 and recently wrote an article for the magazine entitled “What We Will Become: A Secular Inquiry into the Ethics of Research Cloning.” He is a member of the President’s Council on Bioethics. A collection of his essays and columns, Cutting Edges, was published in 1985 (Random House).
He is a regular weekly panelist on Inside Washington, Washington’s highest rated political TV talk show, and a contributing editor to The New Republic and The Weekly Standard. In addition, also serves on the Editorial Board of several journals, including the National Interest and the Public Interest.
In his speeches, Charles Krauthammer breathes new life into tired debates, offering clear and compelling arguments that everyone else overlooks and challenging conventional wisdom. An incisive thinker, he is a strong voice offering new perspectives on international affairs, U.S. politics, foreign policy and culture. He is widely known as a conservative, but he is also unorthodox to the core.