CBS correspondent Morley Safer is retiring this week.

Safer retires as the longest serving reporter on “60 Minutes,” having filed 919 reports on the program since 1970. Among them is his candid interview with Betty Ford that aired in August 1975. 

Image: Betty Ford and CBS Correspondent Morley Safer in the White House Solarium Prior to Taping a 60 Minutes Segment, 7/21/1975 (White House photograph A5605-12)


The Battle of Ia Drang Valley

The images above are stills from a 1965 CBS News Special Report on the Battle of Ia Drang ValleyWalter Cronkite and Morley Safer report on the battle interviewing the men who fought and the officers who commanded.  

Powerful interviews with soldiers filmed just after the battle show men struggling to cope with the loss of friends and their first encounters with North Vietnamese regulars. The film also included opinion from battalion and brigade commanders, with one sneering “it appears the little bastards have had enough and bugged out.”

The report concludes with an interview with the widow of a soldier killed during the battle as she recounts his reason, and the larger foreign policy reason for fighting in Vietnam, paraphrasing that Communism couldn’t be allowed to spread.  

In a brief interview in the field General William Westmoreland describes the Battle of Ia Drang as unprecedented success. Morley Safer warns that Hanoi intends to continue sending regular forces into South Vietnam and that Ia Drang marks the beginning of a long campaign. He concludes by saying:

“The enemy knows that he cannot in the end defeat us in the field, but by killing Americans he hopes to demoralise us at home. That is what happened in France in 1954… The Question remains are the American people prepared to lose more and more young men in vietnam.”

The full 30-minute report is available at

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RIP, Mike Wallace. Here’s 60 Minutes co-host Morley Safer’s video tribute to the master interviewer, featuring unforgettable moments with JFK, LBJ, MLK, and other BIG names.

Puppeh Tahm #1: The Most Basic Basic Basics

WARNING: this will probably not be interesting to you unless you are a dog person. I am only writing it because now I understand mommybloggers who desperately seek connection with other adult human beings after hours spent alone with adorable creatures who shit themselves on the regular.

It is Day Four of life with the lady above. Her name is Morley Safer. She is 5.5 months of baby. We got her at the Humane Society, and praise the Lord she is generally fond of women (not men, as she has little experience with them) and knows how to sit. She’s pretty good at laying down on command. Sometimes she responds to “come” or to kissy noises. She seems to not mind birds. Apparently, she’s decent when passing children and other dogs on a walk. Other than that, we’re starting from scratch.

On her first day, for example, she came home and immediately went into heat (meaning she’d been in heat for a few days at least, but the REALLY telltale signs appeared when we brought her home). We didn’t know anything about that, so that was a fun surprise. I left for a couple of hours to get puppy period diapers and, quite frankly, to have a break from the Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret anxiety-riddled show.  I came back and discovered she had peed, pooped, and had her ladytime all over her pen and then walked around in it. She had also moved her pen partway through an open doorway onto a carpeted floor. Thank the Lord for Nature’s Miracle.

Lesson #1: Do not leave the puppy alone for more than an hour unless you enjoy shits and no giggles.

Lesson #2: When she has to be alone, make sure she’s in her crate or shut the frigging door to the bathroom (always provide water, toys, and treats). Repeat 8,000 times until she learns to entertain herself and chill out by herself.

Lesson #3: Do not reward her or pay her attention unless all four paws are on the ground. Turn your back or very pointedly look the other way until she settles down. Repeat 8,000 times or until Jesus returns to Earth, whichever comes first.

Lesson #4: When she pulls on the leash, stop. When she moves closer to you and gives the leash some slack, say “Good girl!” and start moving again. Repeat 8,000 times until the world ends or she figures it out.

Lesson #5: Don’t force her into her crate to sleep at night. Dog-whisper her into it, even if it takes 30 minutes like it did last night. Repeat 8,000 times until she learns it herself or you are visited by three Christmas spirits, whichever comes first.

Please pray for me. Even if it’s to Cthulhu.

This concludes Puppeh Tahm #1. Thank you for your tahm.
Morley Safer Retiring as Longest-Serving ‘60 Minutes’ Reporter
Mr. Safer was known as much for his hard-hitting reporting as the quirky stories he covered.
By Christopher Mele

I remember his deep voice saying “I’m Morley Safer” on the covers of 60 Minutes. I remember reading his book Flashbacks about Vietnam on the long commute rides home from the filmmaking camp on the other side of town from where I live, and that I couldn’t agree more with what was said in the book “Nobody wins a war. Nobody.” I remember when I learned about his breaking report on Cam Ne’s burning by US soldiers in the Vietnam War, and how he was threatened and humiliated by the US government over that report (but I thought that had I been around at the time the report was first broadcast, I would have thought he did the right thing to report on it). 

Morley Safer has served an amazing career in journalism and we as viewers will miss his reports!



CBS, 7 p.m. ET; 4/15/2012

Last Sunday, the day after Mike Wallace died, Morley Safer opened that evening’s 60 Minutes by noting the passing of his longstanding friend and colleague, and promising a full tribute the following week. Tonight, Safer and 60 Minutes make good on that promise, with the entire program devoted to the man who was there at the beginning of this invaluable TV newsmagazine when it launched in 1968, and who, more than anyone else, was responsible for its mainstream, Top 10 success. This hour is not to be missed; Wallace, in terms of TV history, will be. In both cases, though, attention must be paid.

- David Bianculli