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Ralph Z. Hallow, RIP

October 18, 2020

The death of Ralph Hallow, chief political correspondent at the Washington Times, saddens me and fills my mind with memories going back to 1961.

Ralph Hallow was a graduate student in the Department of History at the University of Pittsburgh and I was a sophomore just returning from a summer internship at Human Events.

I knew Ralph from Pitt and also knew Ralph and several other Lebanese and Armenian families from the tiny “Middle Eastern” community in Pittsburgh.

At Pitt, Ralph Hallow joined a group of members of the Communist Party and I saw him picketing a speech by the founder of the John Birch Society in a group led by the Communist Party’s leading student member.

When twenty years later as Ronald Reagan proved that I was “on the side of history” and Ralph was not, Ralph knew I remembered his radical past and that truth was the bond between us.

Ralph was a “journalist” which meant anything you said to him could appear in print, so I was not surprised when I patted him on the back at a meeting of the Council for National Policy and felt a recording device that enabled him to record conversations. “Ralph,” I said, “are you wearing a wire?”

On one other occasion, Faith Ryan Whittlesey invited me to dinner with Ralph and his wife, Mildred. I was not certain why or how this dinner invitation came about—though the three of us were from Pennsylvania–but Mildred’s ears perked up when I mentioned aspects of our times in Pittsburgh in the 1960s.

Ralph’s conversion from Communist to political conservative was real and I’m certain he delighted in finding a place in American intellectual life where real friendships make life worth living.

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