Victor Lasky – First Lieutenant, United States Army

Newspaper Writer

Victor Lasky, 72, a longtime reporter, author, and former syndicated columnist who lectured and wrote for Accuracy in Media, died of cancer February 22, 1990 at Georgetown University Hospital. He lived in Washington.

Noted for his vocal criticism of communism and journalistic misconduct, Mr. Lasky wrote and lectured for Accuracy in Media, a watchdog organization, in the late 1980s. He began his journalism career in 1940 as a copy boy at The New York Journal American. Later, he was a reporter for The Chicago Sun. In 1955, he wrote for RKO Radio. From 1956 to 1960, he was a public relations executive with Radio Liberty in New York. Mr. Lasky wrote a column that was distributed by the North American Newspaper Alliance from 1962 to 1980.

An anti-Communist activist, co-founder and first vice president of The Council Against Communist Aggression, Mr. Lasky wrote on communist subversion and aggression from the Korean War to the Vietnam War. He wrote a documentary for MGM pictures in 1952, “The Hoaxters,” which was nominated for an Academy Award. He wrote two best-selling books, “J.F.K., The Man and the Myth,” published in 1963, and “It Didn't Start With Watergate,” published in 1977. Lasky also wrote “The Ugly Russian,” “Robert F. Kennedy: The Myth and the Man,” “Arthur J. Goldberg: The Old and the New,” “Jimmy Carter: The Man and the Myth,” and “Never Complain, Never Explain: The Story of Henry Ford II.” He co-wrote “Say, Didn't You Used To Be George Murphy” with former Sen. George Murphy, California Republican. In addition, he edited the “American Legion Reader,” a collection of articles that appeared in American Legion Magazine. Some of Mr. Lasky's articles were published in The Saturday Evening Post, Reader's Digest, Common Sense, the AIM Report and Parade magazine. He hosted a talk show on WRC radio in the early 1960s, and his television appearances included “Nightwatch,” “Good Morning America,” “Crossfire” and “Donahue.”

A native of Liberty, NY, Mr. Lasky was raised in New York City and graduated from Brooklyn College in 1940. He received an honorary doctorate from Ashland University in Ohio in 1983. In 1942, Mr. Lasky served in the Army and was a correspondent in Europe. He wrote for Stars & Stripes from 1943 to 1945. After World War II, he joined The New York World-Telegram and assisted Frederick Woltman in writing his Pulitzer prize-winning series on communist infiltration of American institutions. During his career as a journalist, Mr. Lasky covered the perjury trial of former State Department official Alger Hiss who denied he had passed secrets for transmission to a Soviet spy ring. He co-wrote “Seeds of Treason,” a best seller about the Hiss case, with Ralph DeToledano. He was a member of the National Press Club, the editorial board of American Politics magazine, the Overseas Press Club in New York and the John M. Ashbrook Center for Public Affairs at Ashland University.

Mr. Lasky is survived by his wife of 37 years, Patricia Pratt Lasky; two sisters, Lee Frankel of Queens, N.Y., and Millie Sayles of Brooklyn. A memorial service will be at 2 pm Monday at the Memorial Chapel at Arlington National Cemetery. The family suggests that expressions of sympathy be in the form of contributions to The Cleveland Park Kidney Center in Washington.

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