PETER EISNER, an award-winning foreign correspondent, has been an editor and reporter at the Washington Post, Newsday and the Associated Press. Eisner was correspondent and consulting producer at the PBS programs Newshour Weekend and World Focus and was nominated for a News and Documentary Emmy Award in 2010.
Eisner served as deputy foreign editor and Washington, D.C, political editor with the Washington Post from 2003-2007. Prior to that he was foreign editor and senior foreign correspondent of Newsday, and received the InterAmerican Press Association Award for distinguished reporting on drug trafficking in Latin America. He was a bureau chief and correspondent for The Associated Press in the United States and Latin America. In 1994, he founded NewsCom, an online international news and photo transmission agency, later sold to The Chicago Tribune.
From 1999 to 2001, Eisner was the managing director of the Center for Public Integrity, a Washington-based watchdog organization. There he founded an online publication, publicI.org, which won national investigative reporting awards its first year of existence. He was an early member of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists.
His upcoming book, MACARTHUR’S SPIES, is a non-fiction account of guerrillas and the American underground in Japanese occupied Manila during World War Two. He is also co-author with Phillip Brenner of the forthcoming CUBA’S QUEST FOR SOVEREIGNTY: A 500-YEAR HISTORY (ROWMAN AND LITTLEFIELD).
Eisner’s 2013 book, THE POPE’S LAST CRUSADE (William Morrow), reveals the story of the lesser-known Pope Pius XI, who served before World War Two and engaged an American Jesuit journalist to help him oppose Hitler, Mussolini and anti-Semitism. The book was a History Book Club and Catholic Book Club monthly selection. His 2004 book, THE FREEDOM LINE, which won the Christopher Award, is the story of young resistance workers in occupied Europe who rescued downed Allied fighter pilots during World War II.
His other books include THE ITALIAN LETTER, with co-author Knut Royce, which traces fraudulent U.S. intelligence prior to the U.S. invasion of Iraq; and America’s Prisoner, the memoirs of Manuel Antonio Noriega.
22 thoughts on “About Peter Eisner”
I would very much like to get in contact with Mr. Eisner. I would like to know if he is aware of Mr. Taylor Gannett, another of the diplomats at the American Embassy who assisted in obtaining visas, etc. for Jewish refugees during WWII and the Nazi occupation of Paris. I am his daughter, Martha Gannett Apenbrink. I would appreciate it if he could get in touch with me. My email – firstname.lastname@example.org. I am not on Twitter. I am on Facebook.
I just finished reading “The Pope’s Last Crusade” and found it very interesting. I am a 93 year old widow whose husband and oldest son were baptized by John LaFarge, and my mother-in-law was distantly related to the La Farges. I had read “The Manner is Ordinary” many years ago. Thank you.
Marjorie Du Vivier
Hi Peter! Evelyn & I were just thinking about old times in Bayonne and Teaneck.. Love to hear about you Wendy and the family.
I’m not sure you’ll remember me. Your sister, Wendy, and I were best friends thru elementary and middle school. You use to think that my dad was a spy because he was hardly ever home. His company sent him to various countries. My name is Martha (Wiant) Zabel. I just got your book, “The Pope’s Last Crusade” and am eager to read it. Do tell Wendy, “hi,” from me.
Hi Martha thanks! All best and I’ll pass along your regards to Wendy
Hi Mr. Eisner, I just want to say your book The Memoirs Of Manuel Noriega was a great read. Your reporting confirms many of Noriega’s assertions and provides additional perspective on his conduct as head of Panama’s military, his relations with key U.S. officials, and the damage inflicted upon the people of Panama by the U.S. invasion. Also your book raises new questions about allegations that Noriega was a drug dealer, a murderer, and a thief. America’s Prisoner is in my opinion one of the most important accounts ever written about U.S. duplicity. It’s the story of the United States has imprisoned a man — and a nation.
Hullo Peter! I’m really not sure if I have tracked down the ‘right’ Peter Eisner – I first met you/him through a shared friend and piano teacher of ours, Nancy Chance, in New York during the early 1980’s. You/he lived on the West side and Midtown of Manhattan and by trade was an Author and Arabist working at the time on a biography of the British/Soviet mole, Kim Philby. You/he took me on as a part-time researcher on this project.
Does this ring any bells?
Hi Nick it wasn’t me, but sounds like he was interesting. I’ve never seen a book about Philby by anyone with my same name. Good luck.
Hullo again Peter! Just to thank you so much for following up my enquiry!
Peter, I have read your book The Freedom Line and enjoyed it very much. I just completed Code Name Lily about Micherine “Michou” Dumon-Ugeux. It is a historical fiction but much of the book involves real characters like Michou, Florentino, Dedee, and Robert Grimes, to name a few. May I include your Freedom Line as a reference, or would you prefer that I not. My novel encompasses about 50 different sources, as well as my own fictional characters in the book. I am hoping to give credit to all those who wrote something about the Comet Line for their past efforts.
Look forward to hearing from you.
PS I am very much in contact with Brigitte D’Oultremont, daughter of Georges D’Oultremont, once a member of the Comet Line. She corrently runs the Comet Line Remembrance group
Hi Julien, be my guest. And all the best with the book. Peter
Good interview this morning on CBC radio. Journalists with your wisdom and perspective offer significant hope for the U.S. in these troubled times.
Paul Klein (Rutgers ’72)
Dear Mr. Eisner,
I have just had the pleasure of reading “The Pope’s Last Crusade” and found it very illuminating and informative, providing a lot of background and context of which I was unaware. Thank you! I’d like to ask a question about the appendix giving “Excerpts from LaFarge’s Encyclical.” It seems your excerpt stops before some rather significant sentences in the French version from the Passelcq and Suchecky volume on “Humani Generis Unitas” and I am wondering it they also appear in the English text you found in the Stanton files. They are the paragraphs beginning at par. 133 (in their volume), especially par. 133 itself, which if promulgated, I think, would have (disastrously) made the publication of “Nostra Aetate” in 1965 extremely difficult. Subsequent paragraphs are also quite problematic. Thanks for any information you can provide.
Many thanks for the note, Dr. Cunningham. I’ve been away from home base for the holiday and it may take me some time to nail this down. I’ll be back to you soon as I can.
Thank you very much!
Mr. Eisner, I just finished reading “The Freedom Line.” I read a synopsis somewhere and my interest was aroused due to the fact that two of my Uncles flew in B-17s in WWII … one was lost over the North Sea while returning from a mission and the other had to bail out over France or Belgium. We worked together in the family Plastering business and he told us many stories about his almost six months “somewhere in France or Belgium.” Throughout his time there, he said he never really had an idea of exactly where he was and, because there never seemed to be anyone around that spoke English, no one could tell him. Or maybe no one wanted to tell him. Too much risk. He told us that the group that helped him escape was led by a woman … that she was attractive physically but that she was all business, all the time, and he found that unappealing for a woman to be so “cold.” He was also “shocked” when they were moving him one night she pulled down her underwear and urinated off the side of the road.
Having had six months to contemplate his situation he told us that he had come to the realization that if they were captured he would probably end up a POW but she and her friends would likely be killed. He also was surprised at how young everyone that was helping him seemed. He started out in a group of other flyers but he said that he believes he was separated from the others because he just couldn’t keep his mouth shut … his protectors became increasingly angry at his habit of not refraining from conversation with the other flyers. So he ended up spending most of his time in basements and attics bored out of his mind and alone.
He relayed to us that he found out the young woman who was leading the team was Belgian … but “she spoke French” … he had no idea that Belgians spoke French. He also relayed that he did not understand why everyone was seemingly following the directives of this young woman… he did not know the language but it was clear she was in charge. After reading your book I wonder if one of the women (Lily or Dedee) might have been the young women my Uncle Paul spoke about.
I thoroughly enjoyed your book. The sacrifices and risks undertaken by these people needed to be documented. The people within the resistance need to be remembered now especially as we drift, again, toward autocracy in the world. People that are willing to risk all for what they believe and for the betterment of the world and the avoidance of fascism should be lionized. Thank you for a well-written book on an important topic and time that should not be forgotten.
Many thanks for writing. Please consider commenting on Amazon, Goodreads and other social media. Meanwhile, if you give me your uncle’s name, I could checking records to see what I can find out about him.
Dear Mr. Eisner – I am researching the life of my grandfather, Virgilio Lobregat, who together with his friend and employer, Juan Miguel Elizalde, were beheaded in August 1944 and buried at the Chinese Cemetery in Manila. Their remains, along with Blanche Jurika’s and 26 others, are interred in the memorial built after the war. I have been able to gather much information through the internet and books such as your “MacArthur’s Spies”, “Looking For Liling” (Roces), and “Dear Mother Putnam” (Lichauco) but I am reaching out to see if you have information about my grandfather and his activities with Elizalde’s in your research that you may be able to share or if you can point me in the right direction. Thank you.
Hello Mr. Ortiz. Thanks for getting in touch. The episode involving these murders was truly terrible. Unfortunately, I didn’t develop any information about your grandfather in the course of my work. If I were investigating, I would take a look at the files on the Philippines fighters and occupation at the National Archives in College Park, Maryland, https://www.archives.gov/research/military/ww2/philippine/guerrilla-list-2.html. In the Philippines, researchers have lately been doing extensive archiving of that material and may have it available there was well. All best with your search.
Thank you very much! Stay safe.
A friend loaned me your Freedom Line book. It was an excellent book. I will check out some of your other non-political books. You took all the information you dug up and made it flow for the reader.
Thanks for taking the time to get in touch!