Charles Krauthammer, conservative commentator and Pulitzer Prize winner, dead at 68
New York – Conservative columnist Charles Krauthammer died Thursday, a couple of weeks after telling the world his death from cancer was imminent. He was 68. the Washington Post reports.
Krauthammer, 68, has been outspoken for decades in his support of Israel, and was a lacerating critic of the Obama administration. His rejection of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal was influential in galvanizing Jewish organizational opposition to the agreement. He regularly made himself available for Jewish organizational events.
Krauthammer also was among a small but unyielding core of conservatives who opposed Donald Trump, even as he closed in on the Republican presidential nomination in 2016 and then the presidency. He denounced Trump’s unfiltered rhetoric, which he called “vainglorious.” (Trump returned the insult, calling Krauthammer an “overrated clown.”) He said Trump’s failure to unequivocally condemn white supremacists and neo-Nazis – whose protests in Charlottesville, Virginia, culminated in a deadly attack on a counter-protester – was a “moral disgrace.”
Krauthammer, a New York native who was raised in Montreal, was a first-year medical student at Harvard when a diving accident put him in a wheelchair for life. He became a psychiatrist and first emerged in the political sphere as a speechwriter for vice president Walter Mondale during the Carter administration. Like many hawkish Jewish Democrats, he was soon attracted to the hardline Cold War postures of President Ronald Reagan.
He opposed the early-1990’s Oslo accords, primarily distrusting the renunciation of terrorism by then-Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat – a view that seemed vindicated when Arafat embraced the Second Intifada (2000-2005).
Krauthammer also was an outspoken advocate of the Iraq War, scrambling to defend his advocacy when US efforts were failing.
In his farewell note to his readers, Krauthammer said he had no regrets.
“It was a wonderful life – full and complete with the great loves and great endeavors that make it worth living,” he said. “I am sad to leave, but I leave with the knowledge that I lived the life that I intended.”