For those who have seen the film Good Night, and Good Luck, the name of Edward R Murrow will be a familiar one. The man christened Egbert Roscoe Murrow was not just the greatest broadcast journalist of his generation but purported to be the best there has ever been in the US, and few if any would argue otherwise. As the example below shows from the CBS show See It Now, he was supremely eloquent and learned, testament to the time he put in to his research and scripts. This effort was never better exemplified by the clip we see here, in relation to the Joseph McCarthy anti-communist witch hunts of the early fifties.

Although he will forever be remembered for his part in bringing down McCarthyism, his work throughout the years was always exemplary. Additionally, those in Britain are indebted to him for his ability to communicate to large audiences. It was Murrow, broadcasting from London at the time of the Blitz who helped bring the horror of war home to the American public thousands of miles away through the medium of radio. Of course it wasn’t he alone who convinced the American administration that the US should enter the war but he did inform millions and in no small way facilitated support for the allies and disgust of the Nazi regime. Today, the view that many Americans lack sufficient knowledge on the rest of the worlds social and political situations is still prevalent but this is an accusation that could never have been leveled at Murrow. His extensive travels and genuine interest in other countries and cultures both pre and post World War Two saw to that.

In later years Murrow did in fact have direct influence on the US government when he took a job aiding the Kennedy administration. His legacy however will of course be down to his skills as a broadcast journalist, something he would have preferred. His sign off wasn’t half bad either.