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Remembering Graham Jenkins

Graham Jenkins, a gruff Australian, went on to become Reuters manager for South East Asia and hired me to work as a junior sub-editor in Singapore in 1958. A correspondent in Saigon during the French Indochina war, he liked to recall how he often beat The Times man and novelist Graham Greene to the front page of The Times by using the old Reuters technique of cabling stories in short "takes" of 4-5 paragraphs. Greene filed his dispatches in long slabs of more than 1,000 words. Jenkins left Reuters to become publisher of The Straits Times and after a few years moved to Hong Kong where he founded the colony's first tabloid, The Hong Kong Star. Using his Chinese contacts, he scored with a string of exclusives on events on the mainland during Mao Tse-Tung's Cultural Revolution. His paper was essential reading for China-watching journalists and diplomats in Hong Kong. ■