Tom Lantos Dies


lantos twn.jpg
This afternoon, I am scheduled to speak to about 20 Lantos Humanity in Action Fellows about US foreign policy, the campaigns and blogging — and I’ve just learned the sad news that House Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Tom Lantos (D-CA) has just passed away today.
Lantos was a tireless advocate for human rights and was the only Holocaust survivor serving in the US Congress.
I had recently met with him a few times and saw him moving increasingly in support of a serious US role in Israel-Palestine negotiations. In the past, his support of Israel seemed to preclude a balanced approach to both sides in any negotiation — but recently, in a number of forums and in discussions with me and others — he said that the human crises building in Palestine and among Palestinians inside Israel called out for a different approach.
Lantos was also an advocate of much more vigorous diplomacy in the Middle East writ large than he is given credit for — particularly with Iran.
— Steve Clemons


7 comments on “Tom Lantos Dies

  1. Michael Lillian says:

    One of the Great Voices for Human Rights will be missed.


  2. lux says:

    I live in Lantos’ district and I’m saddened by his loss. He’ll be missed.


  3. Linda says:

    While I did not agree with Lantos on Iraq War or Israel, his memory should be honoroed as a decent man who fought in the Hungarian underground against the Nazis in WWII. I strongly suggest honoring his memory by adding “The Last Days” that won the Oscar for best documentary in 1998 or 1999. Lantos and a number of other Hungarian-American Holocaust survivors are interviewed. Lantos’ story is the most moving.
    He was an economics professor before he won his house seat in 1980 and added a wealth of knowledge and experience to Congress for the past 28 years, especially as a champion of human rights.


  4. Anomalous says:

    And he argued vociferously that Iraq oil exports should pay for the war he supported.
    “Lantos was a tireless advocate for human rights”
    “In the past, his support of Israel seemed to preclude a balanced approach”
    bit of a conflict there I think.


  5. Kathy says:

    Steve, I think you need a troll filter.


  6. Lurker says:

    Israel and the U.S. are interested in Sudan because of its oil. China and France have established holdings there and it pisses USRael off. Stopping “Arab” (and it isn’t Arab, it’s nomads vs. village dwellers) “genocide”in Darfur is just a convenient excuse for a military intervention/ oil grab. As if USRael gives a crap about genocide.
    Lantos was behind the “babies-being-thrown-out-of-their-incubators” hoax that misled the U.S. public into supporting the first Persian Gulf War and the resultant sanctions, Bush the First betrayal of the Shia, and Clinton’s bombings, that killed between 500,000 – 1.5 million Iraqis, many of them children and the elderly.
    While I feel terribe for anyone who loses a family member/ close friend, I hope there’s a special place in hell waiting for Lantos.


  7. edgery says:

    Tom Lantos was a tireless advocate on behalf of the people of Darfur. I will be forever grateful for his efforts to end this genocide and to see that those responsible are held to answer.


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