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Bob Simon: a Talented Reporter in a Degraded Profession—Survived Capture By Saddam, Killed By A Muslim Immigrant Taxi Driver In New York
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February 12, 2015, 08:48 PM
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It was terrible news for all inquiring minds when CBS journalist Bob Simon was killed Wednesday in a New York City car crash. At a time when much of the media spews liberal propaganda rather than provide facts about a complex world, Simon enlightened the public with a gentle story-teller’s hand. His death is a real loss and a reminder of what reporters are supposed to do.

One of my favorite pieces was his 2009 Sixty Minutes segment about the head of the Orthodox Christian Church, Patriarch Bartholomew, who was made to feel increasingly unwelcome in Muslim Istanbul. Much of early Christian history occurred in Turkey, and two million Orthodox lived there a century ago, but now, only 4,000 Orthodox faithful remain in the country following an expulsion of 1.5 million in 1923 and the 1955 anti-Christian riots in Istanbul that convinced 150,000 to leave.

Simon presented an honest picture of how tough life is for Christians in Muslim nations, something not often seen on the broadcast networks.

Another fine film was Simon’s 35-minute documentary about the late athlete Lou Zamperini on the occasion of the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano Japan, where the younger Zamperini was held as a prisoner of war in WWII. A month ago, I read Laura Hillenbrand’s biography of the veteran, Unbroken, A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption, and the Simon film was a worthy portrayal of Zamperini’s amazing life. I felt far more trusting of the Bob Simon depiction rather than Anjelina Jolie’s Hollywood film, which I haven’t seen.

And thanks to the internet, here is that 1998 film, The Great Zamperini:

Finally, the Daily Mail reports that the diverse driver of the culpable vehicle had a bad driving record:

Cab driver who had his license suspended nine times before he crashed and killed Bob Simon, Daily Mail, Feb 12, 2015

The cab driver in the crash which killed veteran CBS correspondent Bob Simon had his license suspended at least half a dozen times prior to the fatal accident and had two traffic convictions, the NYPD confirmed today.

Reshad Abdul Fedahi, 44, of Queens, New York, had multiple cleared suspensions and was driving on a probationary license.

The Taxi and Limousine Commission did not comment on the driver’s previous suspensions on Thursday but the agency earlier confirmed that Fedahi’s probationary license had been suspended pending the outcome of the investigation.

Holding a probationary license means that the driver has been behind the wheel for less than a year.

A preliminary investigation into the Manhattan crash which killed the 73-year-old also suggested that a combination of speed, an inexperienced driver and the fact the reporter wasn’t wearing a seatbelt could be responsible, according to police sources. [. . .]