Arnold Lewis Raphel

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Arnold Lewis Raphel
Born Arnold Lewis Raphel
(1943-03-16)March 16, 1943
Troy, New York US
Died August 17, 1988(1988-08-17) (aged 45)
Nationality American
Alma mater Hamilton College
Syracuse University
Occupation 18th United States Ambassador to Pakistan
Spouse(s) Robin Raphel
Children 1

Arnold Lewis Raphel (March 16, 1943 – August 17, 1988) was the 18th United States Ambassador to Pakistan. He died along with Pakistani President Zia ul-Haq and Brigadier General Herbert M. Wassom when their plane mysteriously crashed shortly after takeoff from Bahawalpur.

Family life[edit]

Raphel was born in Troy, New York on March 16, 1943.[1] The ambassador joined the US State Department in 1966. He was at one time married to his second wife, fellow diplomat Robin Raphel, but they divorced. He had one daughter, Stephanie, with his first wife, Myrna. At the time of his death, he was married to Nancy Halliday Ely-Raphel.


Raphel graduated from Hamilton College (B.A., 1964) and the Maxwell School at Syracuse University (M.A., 1966).[2]


Raphel held a variety of positions throughout his career until his death in 1988. He was mainly a politician and diplomat for the US Government.[3]

Iran Hostage Crisis[edit]

In 1979, Raphel was a key member of the State Department's Special Operations Group set up to free the American hostages seized by Iranian militants at the United States Embassy in Teheran.[2][3]

Office of United States Secretary of State[edit]

In 1981, Raphel served as the Special Assistant to Secretary of State Edmund Muskie.[4] Afterward, he became the Deputy Assistant to the United States Secretary of State in 1985.[5][6]

Ambassador to Pakistan[edit]

Raphel was nominated by President Ronald Reagan and succeeded Dean Roesch Hinton as US Ambassador to Pakistan in January 1987.[2]


Languages Spoken[edit]


In 1988, Arnold Lewis Raphel died in a plane crash alongside Pakistani president Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq.[7] He was 45 years old at the time of his death.

See also[edit]


External links[edit]

Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
Deane Roesch Hinton
U.S. Ambassador to Pakistan
Succeeded by
Robert B. Oakley