Time Magazine Names Jamal Khashoggi and ‘The Guardians’ as Person of the Year

“We chose to highlight four individuals and one group who have taken great risks in pursuit of greater truth,” magazine editor Edward Felsenthal says

Time Magazine has named a group of journalists that they labeled “The Guardians” and the “War on Truth” as its 2018 Person of the Year, passing on President Trump for a second consecutive year along with a number of more famous names on the list.

“The manipulation and abuse of truth is really the common thread in so many of this year’s major stories,” Time Magazine editor Edward Felsenthal said during a reveal on the “Today” show Tuesday. “We chose to highlight four individuals and one group who have taken great risks in pursuit of greater truth.”

Those honored in this year’s issue include murdered Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, Filipina reporter Maria Ressa, two Reuters journalists currently imprisoned in Myanmar, Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo, and the entire staff at Maryland’s Capital Gazette newspaper.

Among the runners-up were President Trump — the 2016 Person of the Year — as well as Special Counsel Robert Mueller, currently investigating the Trump presidential campaign over possible collusion with Russia.

The announcement came as something of a curve ball Tuesday. Of those honored, only Khashoggi had been listed as a contender among several other frontrunners, which also included separated migrant children and “March for Our Lives” activists who emerged out of the shooting at a Parkland, Florida, high school.

“His murder has prompted global reassessment of the Saudi Crown Prince, and a long overdue look at their war in Yemen,” Felsenthal said of Khashoggi, whose death at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul ignited the greatest challenge to the U.S. – Saudi alliance since President Trump took office.

Khashoggi is the only deceased person to ever make the list.

Felsenthal also cited achievements from the others listed including Ressa’s tough coverage of  Philippines president Rodrigo Duterte, Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo’s reporting on massacres of the Rohingya, and the doggedness of the Capital Gazette, which published a paper less than 24 hours after a gunman shot up their newsroom.

It’s the second year in a row the magazine has passed on awarding the honor to a single person. Last year they highlighted the #MeToo movement and the “Silence Breakers.”

Time Magazine has been naming a Person of the Year since 1927 — when they honored aviator Charles Lindberg for his groundbreaking transatlantic flight. This year’s award is the first under the magazine’s new owner, Salesforce billionaire Marc Benioff.