“We must not be meek”

Over the weekend, Der Spiegel announced it would press charges against Relotius and review processes in its once-venerable fact-checking department. Though Relotius characterized his mistakes as the consequences of his own pressure to succeed, that would hardly explain why—as was discovered during this investigation into his work—he recently set up a crowdfunding campaign for two Syrian orphans, when only one exists, and is apparently pocketing donated money.

After the controversy surfaced last week, Der Spiegel vowed to continue work that holds the powerful accountable. Ullrich Fichtner, who will be one of three editors-in-chief at the paper next month, told the Times: “Yes, journalism is on the defensive, with an economic crisis and with all the attacks on us every day. But we must not be meek.”

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