News

VOA Marks 70th Anniversary

U.S. President Barack Obama and other prominent world figures have joined in the year-long celebration of Voice of America's 70th anniversary with messages of congratulations.

The president credited VOA with providing "accurate and objective" news in the face of foreign governments that censor, and regimes that deny universal rights. In a video message released at an anniversary event Wednesday, Obama said the United States is stronger and the world more just because of VOA's efforts.

Burmese pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi congratulates Voice of America on its 70th anniversary in this screengrab from a video produced to mark the milestone, March 7, 2012.
Burmese pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi congratulates Voice of America on its 70th anniversary in this screengrab from a video produced to mark the milestone, March 7, 2012.

Burmese pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi said VOA's 70th anniversary is "like the birthday of a friend," saying VOA and other broadcasting stations were the friends who kept her company during her long years of house arrest.

Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama said VOA's Tibetan service has played a vital role for Tibetans by broadcasting unbiased news, and said he believes news organizations like VOA are "critically important."

Created by the U.S. government during World War II to broadcast news into territory occupied by Nazi Germany, the Voice of America has evolved into a global multimedia organization, broadcasting in more than 40 languages to an estimated weekly audience of more than 140 million.

Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama congratulates Voice of America on its 70th anniversary in this screengrab from a video produced to mark the milestone, March 7, 2012.
Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama congratulates Voice of America on its 70th anniversary in this screengrab from a video produced to mark the milestone, March 7, 2012.

VOA's first shortwave radio transmission, spoken in German on February 1, 1942, began with the words, "Here speaks a voice from America." The broadcast went on to promise, "The news may be good. The news may be bad. We shall tell you the truth."

VOA's 70th anniversary comes as the agency faces budget cuts, along with much of the rest of the federal government. Some language services face sharp staffing cuts or possible elimination.

VOA programs are delivered on television, radio, Internet and mobile platforms, with a network of about 1,200 affiliate stations around the world. In addition to more than 1,100 employees in Washington, VOA works with journalists in trouble spots around the world. Earlier this year, the Taliban claimed responsibility for the murder of a reporter working for VOA in Pakistan.

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments page of 3
    Next 
by: Sudheer
March 12, 2012 5:56 AM
Solid 70 years! Great service to the world! I am grateful to those behind VOA English & VOA Hindi, which are my most favorites.

by: kevin
March 09, 2012 4:13 AM
congratulation!

by: 王阳明
March 09, 2012 1:06 AM
I am new here. I just want to say congratulations!

by: dragonfly
March 09, 2012 12:25 AM
Happy birthday to the remakable broadcasting service for its impartial and swift coverage of stories around the world and for bringing the voice of democarcy and freedom to those who still live in closed societies~ Thank you so much for helping me improve my English every day and for being such a faithful and trustworthy friend~~

by: SHIH-HUNG
March 08, 2012 8:41 PM
Happy birthday

by: yasu
March 08, 2012 7:36 PM
Congratulations and Thank you. VOA you always provide me news and interesting informations around world, and an opportunity to learn English.

by: Mike
March 08, 2012 5:03 PM
I have been listening to VOA since 1968. It is the most reliable source of un-biased info I know of. They even run stories critical of its own government's policies, giving both sided of a controversy. Sometimes their stories are short on background details but it is definitely not government propaganda.

Best wishes for the next 70 years!

by: Adnan Efrini
March 08, 2012 4:28 PM
Voice of America, it is not just voice of Americans but voice of the entire world especially it is voice of all oppressed nations. Through VOA we reach our voice and concerns to the entire world, and in particularly to all Kurds in North America. Here, in the 70 anniversary of VOA we congratulate you and best wishes in the future. We hope that VOA focuses more on the Kurdi dialect of Kurds in the upcoming future.

by: Amed Amedi
March 08, 2012 3:56 PM
We Kurdish people love Voice of America. We want more broadcast in our language. We want more freedom. Thank you Serok Obama

by: TRAN , TRINH
March 08, 2012 2:51 PM
CONGRATULATION 70 th ANNIVERSARY VOA.
VOA News help me to learn more and practise my English, special Listening . Thanks a lot
Comments page of 3
    Next 

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountaini
X
July 02, 2015 4:10 AM
Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.

VOA Blogs