Joe Schlesinger

Foreign Correspondent Emeritus

Joe Schlesinger was a foreign correspondent for CBC for 28 years, covering natural disasters, political upheavals and conflicts from Vietnam to the Persian Gulf. In 2009, the Canadian Journalism Foundation honoured Schlesinger for his body of work.

Latest from Joe Schlesinger


U.S. presidents have always had hidden health issues

Some critics have questioned Clinton's fitness to be president because she came down with pneumonia. If a common illness like pneumonia made a person unfit, then many American leaders would have never taken office.
Point of View

History suggests refugees can only make Canada a better place: Joe Schlesinger

A recent poll by the Angus Reid Institute suggests almost a third of Canadians oppose the admission of Syrian refugees. But history suggests Canadians have nothing to fear, former CBC foreign correspondent Joe Schlesinger writes.

The debt we owe Canada's thalidomide sufferers

The thalidomide tragedy of the late 1950s and early '60s forever changed the way new medications would be regulated and marketed, Joe Schlesinger writes. For that, as well as everything else, we owe these sufferers a huge debt.

Historically speaking, Germany a bigger deadbeat than Greece

Greece and Germany have been at loggerheads all week over whether European lenders should forgive some of Greek's burdensome debt. But as Joe Schlesinger reminds us, Germany's debt defaults after the two world wars dwarf anything Greece has done.

Why the ISIS mission is Obama's real 'red line'

Superpowers have their uses, Joe Schlesinger writes. And the failure to "degrade and destroy" ISIS would degrade America as a force for good in the world.

From Vietnam to Gaza, the fearful history of tunnel warfare

As a military technique, tunnelling is among the oldest methods of warfare still in use, Joe Schlesinger points out. Partly that's because it's effective, at least in striking fear in the hearts of your enemy.

Nicholas Winton: The man who saved children from Hitler

Exactly 75 years ago, CBC journalist Joe Schlesinger was one of 669 Jewish children rescued from the advancing Nazis by Nicholas Winton, a British businessman unwilling to take No for an answer. Today, "Nicky's children" and their extended families number over 6,000 people.

The problem with Ukraine's history, the Russian version

There is an unusual twist in the current crisis over Ukraine and the Crimea because, as Vladimir Putin put it, Ukrainians and Russians are brothers. But even if true, Joe Schlesinger writes, there is no more bitter falling out than a family feud.

Part roller derby, part ballet, the lure of the Winter Games

Canadians take the Winter Olympics more seriously than the Summer Games. The rest of the world, not so much. That's their problem, Joe Schlesinger writes, they are missing out on a very special kind of drama.

The 1914 debate: Is Europe's past really Asia's future?

Japan's Shinzo Abe sparked an international outcry recently when he visited a controversial shrine to Japan's imperialistic war dead and then likened China to militaristic Germany in the run-up to the First World War. Are we really back to 1914, Joe Schlesinger asks.

Dear Greeks, there is life after default - just ask Argentina

Instead of trying to peer into a crystal ball to catch a glimpse of their future, Greeks might want look back at what happened in Argentina a decade ago when its economy lay in ruins.

What China's Ping-Pong diplomacy taught us

This week marks the 40th anniversary of China's first baby step in its transformation from a poor, backward, hermit kingdom to the great power it is today: a table tennis tournament in Beijing that brought together U.S. and Chinese athletes.
Point of View

De-clogging the veins of democracy

Joe Schlesinger says that our main electoral problems aren't with minorities or coalitions but the way we vote.

From ping-pong to powerhouse, China's progress

The changes to China in the past three decades are extraordinary and make it 'unrecognizable' from his last visit 35 years ago, senior CBC correspondent Joe Schlesinger writes.