Condolence letter on the passing of former US Secretary of State George P. Shultz
PM Lee Hsien Loong wrote to Mrs Charlotte Mailliard Shultz to express condolences on the passing of her husband, former US Secretary of State George P. Shultz, on 8 February 2021.
Dear Mrs Shultz,
Ho Ching and I are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of your beloved husband George P. Shultz. Please accept our heartfelt condolences.
George belonged to the generation of great American statesmen whose formative experience was the Second World War. His distinguished years of service to his country, spanning three presidencies and serving in four different cabinet positions, was defined by his deep commitment and dedication in service of his country. As the United States' chief diplomat, he played a major role in bringing the Cold War to a peaceful end, and shaping the post Cold War international order.
George had a long and successful career not just in government, but also in business and academia. After George retired, he stayed active at the Hoover Institution, and continued to speak and write on some of the most pressing problems facing the world. Many countries around the world, including Singapore, paid attention. This was not just for his wisdom and good sense, but also because his was a voice that represented the best of a respected and trusted America. As George wrote in his final op-ed, one of the most important things he had learnt over his 100 years was that trust was the coin of the realm, and good things did not happen without it.
George was a trusted friend of Singapore. Our views were aligned on many issues, especially in seeing the value of a strong US security and economic presence in Asia. Where we had occasion to differ, George was professional in representing US national interests, but remained a good friend to us.
In addition to being a friend of Singapore, George was also a very close friend of my father, Mr Lee Kuan Yew. They knew each other for a long time: Mr Lee, George, Helmut Schmidt and Henry Kissinger shared a friendship that lasted over forty years. Mr Lee was happy to be able to catch up with George for one final time in Singapore in November 2013, before his passing in 2015.
I have been honoured to meet George myself many times, both in the US and in Singapore. I warmly remember when both of you hosted Ho Ching and me to dinner, at your town flat on Russian Hill in 2007. George kindly brought together a distinguished group of guests, and we had a lively discussion.
George's life and service will remain a profound inspiration to all. His deep and lasting imprint, in America and on the global stage, is an enduring legacy which will be deeply missed. I hope you draw comfort from this.
LEE HSIEN LOONG
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