Cave Brown, Anthony 1929-2006

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Cave Brown, Anthony 1929-2006

(Anthony Cave Brown)


See index for CA sketch: Born March 21, 1929, in Bath, England; died of complications from pneumonia, July 14 (some sources say July 15), 2006, in Warrenton, VA. Journalist and author. An unconventional reporter known for his disregard for expense accounts, Cave Brown was a correspondent for the London Daily Mail who was acclaimed for his books on espionage, World War II, and politics. While still a teenager, he worked as a photographer for the Royal Air Force during World War II. After the war, he entered journalism as a staff member of a newspaper in Bristol, England, before becoming a correspondent for more prestigious papers such as the Guardian, Times, and Daily Mail. In his early years, he was a foreign correspondent and covered such stories as the war for independence in Algeria and the revolt against Soviet control over Hungary. He gained particular attention in 1959 when he met Boris Pasternak in the Soviet Union and smuggled out two poems. One, he would later say, he lost while in Berlin, but the second was published in the Daily Mail. Some would say that Cave Brown's act led to the famous Russian author's house arrest by the Soviets and contributed to his death the next year. The reporter also made a name for himself because of his connection to Kim Philby, an English spy who later became a traitor and worked for the Soviets. Philby was a former friend of Cave Brown's, and so when the journalist eventually wrote Treason in the Blood: H. St. John Philby, Kim Philby, and the Spy Case of the Century, he had a particular advantage of an insider's view into his subject. Cave Brown's first publication also dealt with government espionage: Bodyguard of Lies (1975). In addition, he penned the biography The Last Hero: Wild Bill Donovan (1982), about the founder of the Office of Strategic Services, and "C": The Secret Life of Sir Stewart Graham Menzies, Spymaster to Winston Churchill (1987). Cave Brown's career as a foreign correspondent largely came to an end by the early 1960s, when the newspapers he worked for stopped paying for his extravagant spending habits while abroad. The reporter would often put such luxuries as chartered private plane flights in his expenses, and sometimes fled hotels without paying, so he was told to remain in Britain. While limited to this territory, Cave Brown proved himself still a valuable investigative reporter; for example, he broke a story about corruption in Scotland Yard. In 1962, drawn by the resources made available by the Freedom of Information Act in the United States, he moved to Washington, DC. Here he conducted research and wrote his books. Cave Brown was also the editor of such works as The Secret War Report on the OSS (1976), and the coedited The Secret History of the Atomic Bomb (1977). His last book was Oil, God, and Gold: The Story of Aramco and the Saudi Kings (1999).



Los Angeles Times, July 31, 2006, p. B9.

New York Times, August 2, 2006, p. C16.

Times (London, England), July 31, 2006, p. 41.

Washington Post, July 28, 2006, p. B6.