J Street mourns the passing of former Secretary of State Dr. Madeleine Albright, one of the most accomplished and renowned diplomats and statespeople in modern American history.
Throughout her long and distinguished career in diplomacy and politics, Secretary Albright stood out for her keen intellect, moral leadership and unequivocal commitment to democratic values. During her tenure as Secretary of State — the first woman ever to hold that office — she promoted lasting Israeli-Palestinian peace via a two-state solution, and remained a champion for diplomatic progress in the region throughout her life. J Street was deeply honored to host her as the featured speaker at our 2017 National Gala in Washington, DC.
As a child refugee who lost family in the Holocaust and fled Eastern Europe in search of a better life in the United States, Secretary Albright personally understood and deeply felt the terrible dangers posed by fascism, ethno-nationalism, discrimination and war. In her books and speeches, she powerfully and authoritatively warned against the rise of anti-democratic movements, policies and leaders in the United States and around the world, aiming to rally a determined defense of democracy from all those who still believe in freedom, justice and equality.
The legacy of Secretary Albright’s incredible life and leadership should inspire us to maintain her sacred commitments to democracy and the pursuit of peace. At this sad time, the thoughts of the entire J Street community are with her family, friends and colleagues.