George Bush mourns death of Henry Kissinger

Washington, Nov 30 (IANS): Former US President George Bush led the Republicans in mourning the death of former Secretary of State, Henry Kissinger, as he described him as a "distinctive voice" on foreign affairs.

He recalled that Kissinger was "one of the most dependable and distinctive voices" on foreign affairs.

"America has lost one of the most dependable and distinctive voices on foreign affairs with the passing of Henry Kissinger. I have long admired the man who fled the Nazis as a young boy from a Jewish family, then fought them in the US Army," he was quoted in multiple reports quoted as saying.

"When he later became Secretary of State, his appointment as a former refugee said as much about his greatness as it did America's greatness," Bush said, adding: "He worked in the Administrations of two Presidents and counselled many more. I am grateful for that service and advice, but I am most grateful for his friendship. Laura and I will miss his wisdom, his charm, and his humor. And we will always be thankful for the contributions of Henry Kissinger."

Former President Richard Nixon's children also paid tribute to his former national security adviser who served their father and ended the Vietnam War.

"Kissinger played an important role in the historic opening to the People's Republic of China and in advancing detente with the Soviet Union, bold initiatives which initiated the beginning of the end of the Cold War," the Nixon daughters said in a statement.

"His 'shuttle diplomacy' to the Middle East helped to advance the relaxation of tensions in that troubled region of the world."

Kissinger became Nixon's National Security Advisor in 1968 and led the US' withdrawal from Vietnam.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Kissinger's death signalled the 'end of an era'.

"It is with a heavy heart that I mourn the passing of a great statesman, scholar, and friend, Dr. Henry Kissinger, who left us at the age of 100," Netanyahu said in a statement.

"Kissinger's departure marks the end of an era, one in which his formidable intellect and diplomatic prowess shaped not only the course of American foreign policy but also had a profound impact on the global stage," he said.

"Henry Kissinger was not just a diplomat; he was a thinker who believed in the power of ideas and the importance of intellectual capital in public life. His contributions to the field of international relations and his efforts in navigating some of the most challenging diplomatic terrains are a testament to his extraordinary capabilities," media reports from Tel Aviv said.



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