Friday, December 08, 2006

First Female U.N. Ambassador Dies

The Associated Press is reporting that former U.N. Ambassador Jeane Jordan Kirkpatrick has died. President Ronald Reagan appointed her as the first female American ambassador to the United Nations.

Though a native of Oklahoma, Kirkpatrick grew up in Southern Illinois in Fayette County and attended high school at Mount Vernon Township High School.

I had a chance to meet and speak with the former ambassador in 1985 or 86 when she returned to MVTHS as the keynote speaker for the Mount Vernon Conference, and I was a junior or senior. I later met her a second time at Georgetown University where she was on the faculty when I visited the school my senior year.

She was a true Reagan Democrat, who stayed the course when her party drifted away from confronting tyranny. Like an American version of Margaret Thatcher, she was impressive to watch in the news coverage of the early 80s and equally impressive in person later.

History will remember her well.

Jeane Jordan Kirkpatrick, rest in peace.

Update: Thanks to Power Line Blog for pointing out that Commentary has posted Kirkpatrick's piece, "Dictatorships and Double Standards" which helped lead Reagan to pick her as the face of America at the U.N.