Sol W. Sanders, 96: Veteran correspondent specialized in Asia

by WorldTribune Staff, February 19, 2022

A veteran foreign correspondent who specialized in Asian geopolitics passed away on Feb. 17, 2022.

Sol W. Sanders, born in 1926, was a columnist for, before retiring in 2019.

One of Sander’s last columns, in December 2018, was titled: ‘America’s disturbing political shift . . . in Europe’s Islamic direction.’

His last columns dealt with the surge of U.S. energy independence under President Donald Trump, the growing threat of Chinese espionage and ‘America’s disturbing political shift . . . in Europe’s Islamic direction’.

“Sol typically provided a world tour in each one of his columns because for him the historical and cultural context was essential for deciphering current affairs,” said WorldTribune Editor Robert Morton. “He came from an era when reporters owned their reporting and deferred to no one and certainly not to partisan narratives.”

Sanders spent more than 25 years in Asia and briefly served as deputy chief of mission of the World Bank (IBRD) in Tokyo. He is a former correspondent for Business Week, U.S. News & World Report and United Press International. He traveled extensively in Mexico during the 1950s and was a correspondent in Vietnam in the 1960s. He headed the Mass Communications Centre at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

In later years, Sanders conducted research on contract for the Pentagon’s Office of Net Assessment that served as a “Team B” to the military bureaucracy during the last years it was headed by the late Andrew Marshall, known by some as “Yoda.

Sol W. Sanders: ‘He came from an era when reporters owned their reporting.’

He has been a visiting professor at The Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy, Tufts University, adjunct professor of journalism at Hofstra University, Consultant at The East–West Center in Honolulu,  adjunct professor of journalism at Florida Atlantic University and Editorial Advisory Board Member at

He was Deputy Foreign Editor for Business Week (1953), Asian Editor for McGraw-Hill World News (1957–1961) and an editor for U.S. News & World Report (1961–1970) reporting on the Vietnam War. He has also written for the Washington Times.

Sanders is the author of several books including A Sense of Asia, (Scribner’s, 1969), a political memoir of 20 years as a foreign correspondent in Asia; Honda: The Man and His Machines, (Little, Brown, 1975), a biography of the Japanese inventor and industrialist and Mitsubish Electric: The Challenge of Globalization, [Penguin, 1996].

He confided to close friends that he had completed much of the research for a book on hedge fund billionaire George Soros before the publisher killed the project on the advice of attorneys.

Sanders’s final book was an autobiography, “People! Vignettes gathered along the way through a long life” [Deeds, 2015].

Born in Atlanta, he attended the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. Sanders earned a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from the University of Missouri and attended the Far East Institute at Columbia University and the Sorbornne in Paris.