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Wesley Pruden

Wesley Pruden

American journalist legend and Vietnam War author James Wesley Pruden Jr. is Editor Emeritus of The Washington Times. Mr. Pruden’s first job in the newspaper business dates back to 1951 as a copyboy at the now defunct Arkansas Gazette where he later became a sportswriter and an assistant state editor. In 1982, he joined The Washington Times, four months after the paper began, as chief political correspondent. He became assistant managing editor in 1983, managing editor in 1985, and editor-in-chief in 1992. He retired in January 2008 and became editor-in-chief-emeritus. Mr. Pruden is known for his coverage of President Ronald Reagan. In 1991, he won the H.L. Mencken Prize for excellence in writing and commentary. Mr. Pruden writes a twice-weekly column on politics and national affairs for The Times.

Articles by Wesley Pruden

Miss Universe

Another dead horse, another beating

We're finally getting somewhere. Dead horses are useless to most folks, but Democrats, rendering plants and certain newspapers are determined to follow the stink. Published July 10, 2017

U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley       Associated Press photo

At last, wide-awake at the White House

The president is busy this morning at the economic summit in Hamburg, the guest of Angela Merkel, with a lot more to talk about than numbers, trade deals and graphs with lots of squiggles and up-and-down arrows. Published July 6, 2017

Benjamin Franklin (Associated Press) **FILE**

The 4th of July speech Obama didn't make

Barack Obama, regarded by the alt-left as the alt-president, was back home in Indonesia for the Fourth of July holiday, and there's clearly something in the water in the Islamic world. Whatever it is, it brings out the missionary in the man that most of us regard as merely a former president. Published July 3, 2017

Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow      Associated Press photo

The coming crash of the lawless media

The so-called Sullivan rule, which largely freed the media from pursuit by libel lawyers, is the gold standard in American newsrooms. Gold doesn't collect tarnish. Nevertheless, thoughtful publishers, editors and libel lawyers warn that when anything goes and irresponsibility is regarded as a virtue, the media will eventually see its checks returned marked "insufficient funds." It takes a clever man or institution to overdraw an unlimited checking account. Published June 29, 2017

Russian President Vladimir Putin. (Associated Press) ** FILE **

Can't anybody find a Democratic message that works?

Some discerning Democrats are at last telling the party chiefs that the party has no message to take to the hustings next year. That may be a misreading of the stars, Nancy Pelosi's horoscope and Chuck Schumer's tea leaves. Published June 26, 2017

George McGovern. (Associated Press) ** FILE **

The party's over and no place to call home

That's the dilemma of the Democrats, forlorn, despondent and walking in circles like the goose hit on the head with a long-handled wooden spoon. They're asking questions for which there are no happy answers in the wake of their fourth straight loss in a round of special elections. Published June 22, 2017

Alan Deshowitz. (Associated Press) ** FILE **

Justice from the Alice-in-Wonderland School of Law

Fair is fair, but special prosecutors work to their own fairness code, that it's important to be fairer to some than to others. Sometimes you don't have to be fair at all. Published June 19, 2017

FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III was named as special counsel to oversee the ongoing investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. (AP file) ** FILE **

The lawyer finds a permanent client

Every lawyer has a bit of the ambulance-chaser lurking deep in his heart, and dreams of one day landing a permanent client. Even a lawyer as distinguished, as ethical, as high-minded, as above all reproach and as disdainful of personal glory and profit as a special prosecutor. Published June 15, 2017

Julius Caesar

Crossing the line to flirt with an assassination fantasy

The liberals and the left have been flirting with the fantasy of an assassination of Donald Trump since the early hours of last Nov. 9. If all the rants and diatribes, which make up the conversation where snowflakes, "intellectuals" and the morally elite gather to chat and chew, can't accomplish the elimination of the president by peaceable means, then why not by "any means necessary?" Published June 12, 2017

Former FBI Director James Comey speaks during a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on Capitol Hill, Thursday, June 8, 2017, in Washington. Associated Press photo

Mr. Comey's not very good day

One day of huffing, another day of puffing, and we're just about where we were. Half of us want Donald Trump's presidency to succeed, whether we like everything about the Donald or not, and the other half regards him as the anti-Christ. Published June 8, 2017

Bill Cosby. (Associated Press)

Washington's press birds on a wire

If Robert Mueller concludes, after a $100 million investigation into whether Donald Trump and his campaign colluded with the Russians to rig the 2016 election, that there was no "there" there, then what? Published June 5, 2017

President Donald Trump arrives in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, Thursday, June 1, 2017, to speak about the US role in the Paris climate change accord. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

The president keeps a solemn promise to put America first

Uncle Sugar doesn't live here any more, and he didn't leave a forwarding address. This is the message, spoken loud and clear by Donald Trump Thursday in the White House Rose Garden, and it's just now getting through to the easy riders out there. Published June 1, 2017

France's President Emmanuel Macron. (Associated Press) ** FILE **

The easy riders take a fall at the summit

With not much going on at the G-7 summit, and everyone waiting for Donald Trump to say whether he would abandon one of his most fervent campaign promises, social media could turn its attention to the trifling, the piddling and the picayune. People magazine might not have been there, but Bloomberg News got the skinny: Published May 29, 2017

Former US President Barack Obama is awarded the German Media Prize 2016 in Baden-Baden, Germany, Thursday, May 25, 2017.(AP Photo/Michael Probst)

The latest news from the president in exile

The government in exile -- the real one, according to the media -- has had a busy week at home and abroad. "President Obama" has given up leading from behind and presumes now to lead from overseas. His secretary of state has a new mission, as missionary to the safe places where snowflakes fall. Published May 25, 2017

President Trump. (Associated Press) ** FILE **

A boffo performance on the road

The Donald finally catches a break. His trip to the Middle East was planned weeks ago, long before the sacking of James Comey and the media transformation of the voluble sackee from goat to hero. The opportunity to get out of Dodge arrived just in time. Published May 22, 2017

President Donald Trump smiles as he listens to Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos, speak during a news conference in the East Room of the White House, Thursday, May 18, 2017, in Washington. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Destroying Donald Trump is all that matters in the newsrooms of the mainstream media

Now anything goes. All restraints are loosened, all self-discipline trashed. There's no cure or even treatment for Trump Derangement Syndrome, a disease as wild and as swiftly lethal as anything imported from the Ebola River valley of the dark continent. The rules and taboos that once guided even the sleaziest excuse for a newspaper no longer apply. Published May 18, 2017

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of Calif. speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, May 4, 2017. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh) ** FILE **

In search of a really, really big catastrophe

If you're a Democrat, lost in a restoration fantasy of taking over the Congress next year, now is the time to dream big. Reality, with its talent for smashing the fanciful, will arrive soon enough. Published May 15, 2017

In this Wednesday, May 3, 2017, file photo, then-FBI Director James Comey testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, before a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing. President Donald Trump abruptly fired Comey on May 9, ousting the nation's top law enforcement official in the midst of an investigation into whether Trump's campaign had ties to Russia's election meddling.(AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster) ** FILE **

It's a carnival, and there's a monster on the midway

James Comey is a good lawyer. He was a good judge. Everyone says so, so it must be true. But he's a lousy politician, and he grew too big for his britches. He forgot who he was, and paid dearly. Published May 11, 2017

Emmanuel Macron (Associated Press)

The elites win a round, but in France

The good news for the elites in the land of the free and the home of the brave, driven to the point of madness by the success of Donald Trump, is that they finally have something to cheer. The not-so-good news is that the something to cheer is not here, but in France. Published May 8, 2017

House Speaker Paul D. Ryan, finally a winner. (Associated Press)

A squeak and a reprieve for the Republicans

The Republicans in the House finally did what they said they wanted to come to Washington to do. They voted Thursday to repeal Obamacare, but by the slimmest of margins. Speaker Paul D. Ryan needed 216 votes and he turned out 217. Published May 4, 2017