Diplomat and Author Madeline Albright Dead at 83

Madeline Albright
Madeleine Albright served as secretary of state under President Clinton from 1997-2001.

The splendid American diplomat and author Madeline Albright has died. She was 83.

The Washington Post remembers Secretary Albright with affection:

Madeleine K. Albright, who passed away on Wednesday, shaped a generation of foreign policy leaders — gently and usually with a smile. She knew every senior official, mentored many of them, and managed to say a cheery word even to people who took “dour” as a compliment.

The New York Times reports that the cause of Albright’s death was cancer. Additionally, the Times added to our recollections of the the first woman US Secretary of State:

In America, Madeleine Korbel was a gifted student, married into the wealthy Albright-Medill newspaper family and wrote many books and articles on public affairs. She also climbed the ranks of the Democratic Party to pinnacles of success as a counselor to President Jimmy Carter and as a foreign policy adviser to three presidential candidates: former Senator Walter F. Mondale of Minnesota in 1984, Gov. Michael S. Dukakis of Massachusetts in 1988 and Mr. Clinton in 1992. She was also the campaign foreign policy adviser to Geraldine Ferraro, the first woman to run for vice president.

In addition to being one of the sharpest and most respected political minds of our time, Albright was an author. Her most recent books were 2020’s Hell and Other Destinations: A 21st-Century Memoir and 2019’s Fascism: A Warning. In that book she took dead aim at then-president Donald Trump. “If we think of fascism as a wound from the past that had almost healed, putting Trump in the White House was like ripping off the bandage and picking at the scab,” she wrote.

January Magazine’s 2003 interview with Secretary Albright is here. ◊

About Linda L. Richards 72 Articles
Linda L. Richards is the editor of January Magazine and the author of several books.

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