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SOF founder Robert K. Brown and friend in Viet Nam.

Soldier of Fortune’s Founder Sells Magazine to Journalist Susan Katz Keating, Passes Torch After 47 Years

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By Robert K. Brown

After 47 adventure-filled years of publishing Soldier of Fortune Magazine,  I decided it was time to move on to other long awaited projects, including writing books of the SOF adventures. After having given it considerable thought, I am passing the torch to journalist and author Susan Katz Keating, who has contributed to SOF and has been a friend to the magazine since the early 1980s. 

Susan first connected with SOF years ago, when she took out an ad in the magazine, looking for mercenaries. She can tell the story about how that went. Later, SKK facilitated PEOPLE Magazine to accompany Col. Jack Bailey USAF (Ret.) on a waterborne rescue mission in the South China Sea. Other SOF-ers and I went on one of those missions, where Bailey helped people escape from persecution in Vietnam, and to learn more information about Americans MIA from the Vietnam War.

Since then, SKK accompanied our team at the Washington, D.C. waterfront involving encounters with foreign rebel leaders, and at gatherings with some of the most fascinating military figures of our day. She can tell those stories herself, about Nick Rowe, Charlie Beckwith, Eden Pastora, and others. She also can tell stories of intrigue in pre-war Dubrovnik and Sarajevo, and of action in Belfast and South Armagh during the height of the Troubles in Northern Ireland. 

Over the years, Susan has written for Soldier of Fortune Magazine, as well as for other military and mainstream publications. In our pages, she wrote about war and warriors. Her article on the Battle of OP Nevada in Afghanistan was one of the last cover stories for the print magazine. Her story about that battle, the embodiment of being on Desperate Ground, remains one of the most popular stories in the online magazine. Over the years, SKK wrote for SOF about American POWs in Korea, and the rise of China’s Peoples Liberation Army.  She also wrote about phony Vietnam veterans and other topics, including “How to Stage a Soviet Coup,” which was published shortly before Mikhail Gorbachev was targeted in a failed coup attempt in the USSR.

Here is a little more about the person I am passing the torch to.

Susan Katz Keating is an award winning writer and investigative journalist specializing in war, terrorism, and international security. She previously was Senior Editor for national security and foreign affairs at the Washington Examiner. As a longtime military correspondent for PEOPLE magazine, she has broken stories there and in TIME on the U.S. military and domestic terrorism. 

Some of SKK’s stories for SOF

A former Washington Times security reporter, she is the author of Prisoners of Hope: Exploiting the POW/MIA Myth in America (Random House), and books about Saudi Arabia, Native American warfare, and other topics for young readers. Her work has appeared in Readers Digest, the New York Times, Air&Space, American Legion, VFW, RealClear Investigations, and other publications. She has been cited in the New Yorker, the Wall Street Journal, Salon, and other publications. She was a founding trustee for the National Museum of Americans in Wartime, and is secretary of the board of Military Reporters & Editors. She briefly was in the U.S. Army, where she earned her Expert rating on the M-16 rifle. She was editor of the Dixon Tribune newspaper in California. She was a director of the Travis AFB Museum, and served as restoration crew chief on a B-52. 

I am convinced that Susan has the passion and is well prepared to carry on the legacy of the last 47 years of SOF magazine.  

She is a strong supporter of the military and a patriotic American.  She now is the publisher/owner of Soldier of Fortune Magazine.

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