Henry A. Kissinger

Remembrances

 

Giovanni Agnelli


During the last two decades of his life, no one was closer to me than Gianni Agnelli. We spoke on the telephone three or four times a week and whenever something interesting happened in either of our lives. We spent time together when either of us traveled to the other's country, which was every month or so. Gianni was, of course, a man of legendary charm.

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John Aspinall


John Aspinall became a close friend, yet I made his acquaintance only a little less than three years ago. We met altogether perhaps six or seven times, yet his parting has left a painful void in my life.

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Rudolf Augstein


Getting old, I read somewhere, is a process of becoming a stranger in your own world. Gradually, the people who provided emotional support and intellectual sustenance are stripped away. Even as the perspective deepens, it traverses an increasing void. In a way, it is strange that Rudolf Augstein's death should inspire such reflections.

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Pat Buckley


I do not recall ever having been so shocked by the passing of a close friend as by Pat Buckley's. I somehow never thought of her as subject to the normal rules of our existence. I was amazed to read her age in the obituary pages.

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William F. Buckley, Jr.


Bill Buckley inspired a political movement that changed American politics; he founded the National Review that, for over a generation, has shaped American political discussion; he hosted an influential talk show for thirty years; he wrote an elegant column.

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Marion Dönhoff


No one moved me more than Marion Dönhoff or had a deeper impact on me as a human being. We were not contemporaries; she was brought up in the tranquil time before the First World War, I in the turbulence of the Germany of the 1920s and 1930s. She was serene, I more shaped by the pressures of the times. But we were close friends; and this will be my badge of honor for as long as I live.

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Lawrence S. Eagleburger


Who of his associates can ever forget Larry at work: in shirt-sleeves, asthma inhaler in one hand, cigarette in the other, cough drops in front of him, a telephone squeezed between shoulder and ear and very loud opera music blaring from his recorder.

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Ahmet Ertegun


I do not remember precisely when Ahmet showed up in my life. I had heard of him, of course, but I did not believe what I was hearing. Suddenly, he was there, raspy-voiced, irreverent, buoyant, debonair, charming, ubiquitous, highly intelligent and occasionally, let us admit, exasperating.

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Gerald R. Ford


According to an ancient tradition, God preserves humanity despite its many transgressions because, at any one period, there exist ten just individuals who redeem mankind, without being aware of their role.

Gerald Ford was such a man. Propelled into the presidency by a sequence of unpredictable events, he had an impact so profound as rightly to be considered providential.

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Sir James Goldsmith


When my family was about to leave the country of my birth, I called on my grandfather, to whom I was very attached, in the little village where he lived, to say good-bye. He was suffering from cancer, and I knew I would never see him again. My grandfather took the finality out of the encounter by telling me that we were not really parting, because he would pay me a final visit at my parents' home a few weeks hence. Though I did not really believe it, the prospect proved remarkably consoling.

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Katherine Graham


The friendship Nancy and I shared with Kay Graham is one of the legacies of my government service that we cherish most. Unlike so many Washington relationships which end with the exercise of power, it grew in intensity in the decades after I left office. Yet The Washington Post had been a relentless critic of many aspects of the administrations in which I served.

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Alexander Haig


Wherever he served, he made a difference. That is the compliment Al Haig, who died on Feb. 20 at age 85, would have most appreciated. Service was his purpose. Courage was his defining characteristic. Patriotism, his impetus.

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Fritz Kraemer


Fritz Kraemer was the greatest single influence of my formative years, and his inspiration remained with me even during the last thirty years when he would not speak to me.

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Hans Merkle


It is a great honor to be asked to deliver a speech in memory of one of the most remarkable men I have known. It is a daunting task as well. For those in this room who knew Hans Merkle, nothing I can say will be able to reflect his complexity and inspirational quality.

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Hans Morgenthau


Hans Morgenthau was my teacher. And he was my friend.

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Richard M. Nixon


During the final week of Richard Nixon's life, I often imagined how he would have reacted to the tide of concern, respect, admiration and affection evoked by his last great battle.

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William S. Paley


By the time our paths crossed, Bill Paley had already made an enduring contribution to American life and American culture. He was in his 70s, at an age when deep, new human relationships are rarely forged. Yet, almost miraculously, Bill and I became close friends, and I want to talk about Bill Paley as a friend.

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Nelson Rockefeller


That Nelson Rockefeller is dead is both shattering and nearly inconceivable. One thought him indestructible, so overpowering was he in his energy, warmth and his deep faith in man’s inherent goodness. For twenty-five years, he had been my friend, my older brother, my inspiration and my teacher.

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Peter Rodman


A kind Providence caused Peter’s life and mine to intersect over four decades ago. Peter was assigned to me as tutee in 1965 at Harvard. He was part of my life ever since. It will be an emptier and less joyful world without him.

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William D. Rogers


Bill Rogers was my colleague, my friend and, in many ways, my conscience. In the thirty-four years I was fortunate enough to walk with him, he became part of my life. Rarely did a day pass, and never a week, without a long conversation. I have never met anyone with greater integrity and more devoted to serving our country and its core values of freedom and human dignity.

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Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr.


On the morning after Arthur's death, his son, Stephen, telephoned to invite me to the apartment that evening for a gathering of Arthur's friends. This act of grace took me back to the Harvard of the 1950s, when our friendship was born, before the loss of our national consensus, to an age of relative innocence when, at joint faculty seminars of Harvard and MIT, professors discussed together how to tame the nuclear age.

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Ariel Sharon


Arik Sharon started as a warrior. He ended his career on the way to being a peacemaker.

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Beverly Sills


I adored Beverly. When we lunched, we used to tell anyone we ran into - if necessary, even the headwaiters - that we were one of the great love stories of the city and that we kept it secret by flaunting it.

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Joseph Sisco


Joe Sisco was an original; when they made him, they threw away the mold. Indefatigable, dedicated, knowledgeable, a superb diplomat, and a skillful bureaucratic infighter, Joe was an indispensable colleague and a valued friend.

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Cyrus R. Vance


Cyrus Vance devoted his life to the service of his nation and the search for peace in the world. Dedicated, tenacious, unflappable, self-effacing, Cy was a gentleman of what is now called “the old school;” we would all be better off had qualities such as his remained commonplace.

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Walter Wriston


I loved Walt Wriston. We live in an age of extraordinary self-consciousness; its fashionable representatives tend to evaluate themselves by their image rather than their long-term accomplishments. The goal is effect rather than achievement; frequently, the two are confused with each other.

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