Skip to comments.Richard Holbrooke has died
Posted on 12/13/2010 4:59:54 PM PST by Ravnagora
ABC News has learned that Richard Holbrooke, the US Special Representative to Afghanistan and Pakistan, has died.
On Friday, Holbrooke was rushed to the hospital with a torn aorta. He went through more than 20 hours of surgery. Earlier this evening, speaking at the US State Department, President Obama sang Holbrooke's praises and called him "a tough son of a gun."
Holbrooke, 69, was a former ambassador to the United Nations and served as chief negotiator at the Dayton Peace Accords, which ended the war in Bosnia.
The New Yorker's George Packer wrote a nice story about Holbrooke last year, which you can read HERE.
Holbrook died trying the impossible, implementing Obama Diplomacy.
I couldn’t believe it tonight when I heard that he had had some role during Vietnam and he was only 69. Guess it’s true - this guy was around a very long time as a PUBLIC SERVANT. This from Wikipedia:
In 1962, Holbrooke graduated from Brown University, where he was inspired by President John F. Kennedys call to service to enter government work. He was also influenced by the guidance of Secretary of State Dean Rusk, whose son, David, was Holbrookes closest friend at Scarsdale High School. A few weeks after college graduation, Holbrooke entered the Foreign Service. A year later, after Vietnamese language training, he began six years of service in and on Vietnam. He served first in the Mekong Delta, as a civilian representative for the Agency for International Development working on the rural Pacification Program. This involved supporting the South Vietnam government with economic development and enacting local political reforms. Holbrooke then moved to the US Embassy, Saigon where he became a staff assistant to Ambassadors Maxwell Taylor and Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr.. During this time, he served with many other young diplomats who would play a major role in American foreign policy in the decades ahead, including John Negroponte, Anthony Lake, Frank G. Wisner, Les Aspin, and Peter Tarnoff. As the conflict in Vietnam escalated, President Lyndon Johnson formed a team of Vietnam experts to work in the White House under the former head of the Phoenix Program, R.W. Komer, in an operation that was separate from the National Security Council. As a rising young diplomat with significant experience in the country, Holbrooke was asked to join the group when he was only twenty-four years old.
Following his time in the White House, Holbrooke served as a special assistant to Under Secretaries of State (then the number-two position in the State Department) Nicholas Katzenbach and Elliot Richardson. In 1968, Holbrooke was asked to be part of the American delegation to the 1968 Paris peace talks, which was led by former New York Governor Averell Harriman and Deputy Secretary of Defense Cyrus Vance. He also drafted a volume of the now famous Pentagon Papers, a top-secret report on the governments decision-making in Vietnam. Following these assignments, Holbrooke spent a year as a mid-career fellow at the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University.
Dr. Michael DeBakey was able to fix the problem by implanting a dacron tube.
That was an exciting perid, amazing advances in treating cardio-vascular surgery. Remember the first artificial hearts?
My father-in-laws aneurysm was associated with advanced lung cancer.
We have got to see health care reform repealed. Those minutes, hours, days...years are very precious.
They were the best times f-i-l and I enjoyed together. I have incredibly precious memories of those few days....
He went through more than 20 hours of surgery.
How awful for his wife and family...
It must have been torture for them...
Who is he? what has he done? and why are these people more important then our brave men and women who die in combat?
If only we knew now what we’ll know years from now.
The MSM is deeply saddened.
Obama talks to himself?
My father had the same thing.
All of a sudden his BP started dropping and he felt like he couldn’t move or breathe.
He underwent many hours of surgery and they repaired his aorta. Basically what happened is that it sprang a leak/tear.
He is fine now.
No a surgeon trained under Dr. DeBakey performed the surgery. You trucated my the quote.
As a Christian I will offer prayers for Mr. Holbrooke, and especially his family.
Today, however, my prayers, and deeply personal grief, are focused a little closer to home. I just got word today that a young friend, a lad from my church who I watched grow up and used to have many a talk with about his future plans, was just killed in Afghanistan by a truck bomb. I don’t have official details but the area in which he was serving matches the one in the incident that just made the news here.
He was twenty-three years old, loved his country, and survived two tours in Iraq. He died, in no small part, because of the insane ROE’s, disingenuous no-win strategies and just plain evil machinations and betrayals of men like Mr. Holbrooke.
I will pray for them both - God will sort it out.
Their marriage was described as often turbulent. They separated from one another in 1987 for five months after Peter learned of her affair with columnist Richard Cohen.
Kati is now married to former U.N. Ambassador Richard Holbrooke.
Well, well... sounds like my kinda girl...
God bless your young friend.
He’s the one I feel bad for.
There was a time when, if a famous person died, Freepers would call people out if they posted things like “may he burn in hell”, because “we’re” supposed to be better than that and have more class. Even when we disagreed with their politics we didn’t show the deceased such disrespect.
That was supposed to be the kind of thing only Democrats would do.
He isn’t anymore.
Wow. Good luck and blessings on your dad. Torn aorta is usually fatal...over 90% I hear. R Holbrooke had world’s best medical care and he did not come though
LOL, he is a such a pig.
You trucated my the quote.
I apologize, that was not my intent. I was only thankful for the advances made because of Dr Debakey’s work.
What’s the connection?
Very good post.
There’s a continued lowering of standards in all of American life, and it’s a shame to see it among those who identify as conservatives. Some may simply be taking their lead from Hannity who often acts as if he never heard the phrase ‘De mortuis nil nisi bonum’
My Grand daddy was happy as hell when Hitler died.
I send my sincere condolences to his family and friends.
I will say only this about the man, as far as I’m concerned, one of traditional, CONSTITUTIONAL, America’s worst enemies died today.
Prayers for the family of Mr. Holbrooke, for comfort and strength in their time of loss. I wish for them only blessings in their time of mourning.
....I’ll just say that in the unlikely event someone arranges a Panakhyda for [Holbrooke]...
It ain’t gonna happen, so you need not worry about it!!!!
Dacron. I used to have a summer suit made of Dacron and cotton...Well gone now....as is Mr. Holbrooke....sorry for his family, though...not sorry about Mr.Holbrooke...a feeling probably shared by many, many Israelis.
Bill: “And may I give a hearty *W@@T!* to all you fine folks out there in Hooterville!”
I’m surprised that he lasted as long as he did after being stricken. John Ritter suffered the same thing and didn’t even make it to the hospital OR - and it was across the street from his studio ...
If I know Bill, the connection is a bee line!
I was wondering how he survived for so long, that is also always fatal unless you just happen to have a chest x-ray at the right time.
Exactly what I was thinkin’!
How come Holbrook lasted so long? Ritter was dead by the time he hit the floor.
How did he tear his aorta? Some type of trauma? Anyone shed a light on this?
My Father’s Aorta ruptured in a trauma unit, and he was only given a 10% chance of recovery after fourteen hours of surgery. He was in ICU for a month, but he made it. He was never the same, and had short term memory issues until he was diagnosed with Alheimer’s. The doctor’s believed that the cause of the Alzheimer’s was the rupture of his aneurism.
Ritter was weird, possible sexual problems, and apparently bought off by someone associated with Hussein.
Holbrooke was strong, determined, brave and pretty good for a State Dept. professional leader. However, he carried out flawed policies - Vietnam peace talks; Kosovo (if it blows up, you’ll know that Clinton failed); Afghanistan - a toss-up so far but he wasn’t liked by many in the field.
Still, a good man. RIP.
Thanks — but I was referring to John Ritter and wondering why he died so quickly while Holbrook lingered so long.
If you want to be taken seriously you need to provide additional credible information.
Uh...were you thinking of Scott Ritter?!
I join in prayer for his family and loved ones as they deal with his homegoing, God’s peace and guidance.
No. I as wondering if anyone knew why Holbrook lasted so much longer than John Ritter.
As it is, it little more than a reflection of the nations that are represented there; dictatorships, monarchies and limited democracies.
My Mom had an aortic aneurysm detected and repaired in two complex procedures. The surgeons would not admit it outright, but we pieced together the fact that they experienced a problem controlling her oxygen during the procedure. She had stroke-like symptoms, but actually “weaker” brain cells died from lack of oxygen in her brain, which is not considered a stroke. Perhaps something similar happened to your Dad.
Milan Panic, the former prime minister of Yugoslavia, told me a story about Holbrooke several years ago.
Panic was a Clinton supporter during the 1990s but was strongly opposed to taking action in Kosovo. He called Clinton to say the Serbians were not committing genocide in Kosovo but was referred to Holbrooke instead. When Panic explained what was really happening in Kosovo, Holbrooke hung up on him.
Turns out Panic was right and Clinton and Holbrooke were wrong about Kosovo.