“Richard Holbrooke was a giant among the diplomats of our time. He was truly one of the best and the brightest and the fiercest fighters for the causes he believed in or interests of his country.” -Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt
“He was a remarkable man, a remarkable public servant and someone who contributed enormously to the cause of a more peaceful and just world. He will be deeply mourned by many people in many different nations.” -British Former Prime Minister Tony Blair
Here’s to Richard Holbrooke! Coming from a family of people with heart disease, I always prefer to romanticize their deaths by arguing that their hearts just gave out; They had lived their lives to such a full extent that it was their hearts that ended up failing them, their determination to live life to the fullest was never compromised. This is definitely the case with my great-grandmother who died at 97 years, taking spanish lessons till that point, and learning the ins and outs of digital devices while taking me to art exhibits and sending me Edmund Morris’s books on Theodore Roosevelt. It goes for my father’s father who I never met aside from my infant age, who used to take me forwalks across our Delaware suburb to give my parents a break from my baby cholic.
“America has lost one of its fiercest champions and most dedicated public servants. He was one of a kind — a true statesman — and that makes his passing all the more painful.” -US Secretary of State (and my personal heroine) Hillary Clinton
Richard Holbrooke demanded more from his life than the average person. For those Americans living abroad, and any who are concerned about the U.S. standing in the world and international peace, he should be a household name. His death just made it onto the front page of the New York Times, a real disappointment that his image wasn’t up all day. It shows that the U.S. indifference to foreign policy and diplomacy is still alive and well for the domestic audience. On the der Spiegel english website, Holbrooke is front and center, right where he belongs. He was a real American HERO, and will be deeply missed by those of us who lived everyday in gratitude for his service to our country, and the world.
His last words in his pakistani hospital were, “you’ve got to stop this war in Afghanistan.”
Prost Ambassador Holbrooke!
“This is a tragic loss for our country, this region and our world. Richard Holbrooke was a true titan in the diplomatic arena and a central figure in the effort of Afghanistan and Pakistan. It was with considerable pride that we called him our diplomatic wingman. He was, in short, a tremendous diplomatic partner, a great American and a good friend.” -US General David Petraeus