Who was he: Walter Leland Cronkite, Jr. (November 4, 1916 – July 17, 2009) was an American broadcast journalist for the CBS Evening News and the most prominent broadcaster of his generation.
Cronkite was often called "the most trusted man in America" and reported on most major events of the latter 20th Century including the NASA moon landings (assuming NASA astronauts landed on the moon) and, more famously, the Vietnam War. His catchphrase was, "And that's the way it is," though in the Internet Reformation era it has emerged that Cronkite was anything but inclined to provide unbiased news.
Like all men (and women) of higher achievement within the American mainstream media empire that dominated the 20th Century, Cronkite was at once accommodating of corporate authority and personally socialist in his views. This peculiar contradictory mental element can be found in so many successful individuals of the time. While recognizing implicitly and explicitly the authority of Leviathan, they somehow managed to convince themselves as well that state largesse was to be extracted on behalf of the masses. It was a mental state at once truculent and confused.
Walter Cronkite was the recipient of the "Norman Cousins Global Governance" award from the World Federalist Association in 1999, lauded by Hillary Clinton in comments at the award ceremony.
Walter Cronkite was much feted while alive and the degree of adulation is probably inversely proportionate to his contribution to the larger human endeavor. Eventually, Cronkite will be seen as nothing more than an apologist for empire, an empty man in an expensive suit doing his masters' bidding in a sonorous voice. It is, perhaps, the voice he will be remembered for above all, and the faux-gravity of his persona.
Background: Walter Cronkite was born in Saint Joseph, Missouri into a family of Dutch ancestry, as the family surname was originally Krankheyt.
Cronkite lived in Kansas City, Missouri, as a child and then moved to Houston, Texas with his family where he attended junior high school. He edited the high school newspaper and was a member of the Boy Scouts.
Cronkite attended college at the University of Texas at Austin (UT), but dropped out of college in his junior year in the fall of 1935 to begin work as a journalist. Cronkite started his broadcasting career as a radio announcer for WKY in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
Walter Cronkite joined the wire service United Press in 1937 and became an important reporter during World War II, covering battles in North Africa and Europe. Cronkite also covered the Battle of the Bulge and the Nuremberg Trials. In 1950, Cronkite joined CBS News and became a member of its expanding television division.
As it grew, so did Walter Cronkite's reputation and prestige. On April 16, 1962, Cronkite succeeded Douglas Edwards as the anchorman of the CBS Evening News and entered into American history as a news icon.