Arnold Lewis Raphel

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Arnold Lewis Raphel
18th U.S. Ambassador to Pakistan
In office
January 1987 – 17 August 1988
President Ronald Reagan
Preceded by Deane R. Hinton
Succeeded by Robert B. Oakley
Personal details
Born Arnold Lewis Raphel
(1943-03-16)March 16, 1943
Troy, New York, US
Died August 17, 1988(1988-08-17) (aged 45)
Bahawalpur, Pakistan
Nationality American
Spouse(s) Myrna Feigenbaum (first wife)
Robin Raphel (second wife)
Nancy Halliday Ely-Raphel (1987-1988; third wife)
Children 1 (with Myrna Feigenbaum)
Alma mater Hamilton College (New York)
Occupation Diplomat

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.

Early life and education[edit]

Raphel was born in Troy, New York to a Jewish family on March 16, 1943.[1][2] Raphel graduated from Hamilton College (B.A., 1964) and the Maxwell School at Syracuse University (M.A., 1966).[3]

He spoke Urdu, French, Persian and English.[citation needed]

Personal life[edit]

Raphel was married three times. He had one daughter, Stephanie, with his first wife, Myrna Feigenbaum.[2] His second marriage was to fellow diplomat Robin Raphel.[when?] At the time of his death, he was married to Nancy Ely, whom he had married in 1987.[2]


Raphel joined the US State Department in 1966.

Raphel held a variety of positions throughout his career until his death in 1988. He was mainly a diplomat for the US Government.[4]

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.[3][4]

Office of United States Secretary of State[edit]

In 1981, Raphel served as the Special Assistant to Secretary of State Edmund Muskie.[5] Afterward, he became the Deputy Assistant to the United States Secretary of State in 1985.[6][7]

Ambassador to Pakistan[edit]

Raphel was nominated by President Ronald Reagan and succeeded Dean Roesch Hinton as US Ambassador to Pakistan in January 1987.[3]



In 1988, Arnold Lewis Raphel died in a plane crash alongside Pakistani president Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq.[8] 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