Edmund A. Walsh

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Father Walsh with General Douglas MacArthur in Tokyo, 1948

Fr. Edmund Aloysius Walsh, S.J. (October 10, 1885 – October 31, 1956)[1] was an American Jesuit Catholic priest, author, professor of geopolitics and founder of the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service, which he founded in 1919–six years before the U.S. Foreign Service itself existed–and served as its first regent.

He directed the Papal Famine Relief Mission to Russia in 1922, which also succeeded in securing for the Vatican the Holy Relics of St. Andrew Bobola (they were actually transported to Rome by the Walsh's Assistant Director, Louis J. Gallagher, who later wrote books both about Walsh and about Bobola).[2][3]

Later, Walsh worked on behalf of the Vatican to resolve long-standing issues between Church and State in Mexico in 1929, and negotiated with the Iraqi government to establish an American College in Baghdad in 1931.

After the Allies' victory in World War II, Walsh served as Consultant to the U.S. Chief of Counsel at the Nuremberg Trials. During that task, he interrogated the German geopolitician General Karl Haushofer to determine whether or not he should stand trial for war crimes, eventually finding that Gen. Haushofer ought not stand trial.

Strongly anti-Communist, it is alleged that Walsh was the man who first suggested to Senator McCarthy that he use this issue in order to gain political prominence. Walsh vigorously promoted anti-Communism thought throughout his career.

Walsh was the author of The Fall of the Russian Empire: The story of the last of the Romanovs and the coming of the Bolsheviki. (1928).[4]

Legacy[edit]

President Dwight D. Eisenhower sent a letter to Georgetown University when Father Walsh died in 1956, which read in part:

The death of Father Walsh is a grievous loss to the Society in which he served so many years, to the educational and religious life of the United States and to the free people of the Western world. For four decades, he was a vigorous and inspiring champion of freedom for mankind and independence for nations... at every call to duty, all his energy of leadership and wisdom of counsel were devoted to the service of the United States.

Walsh's most obvious legacy is the School he founded, which has become an incubator of leadership in the United States and internationally. Graduates of the School have included U.S. President Bill Clinton and the leaders of the U.S. intelligence community (George Tenet), the American labor movement (AFL-CIO President Lane Kirkland), and the American Catholic Church (New York Cardinal Archbishop John Joseph O'Connor). Heads of state educated at the School have included King Abdullah of Jordan and Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo of the Philippines.

The School has also been home to legendary faculty members including the historians Carroll Quigley, and Jules Davids, the political scientist, and World War II hero Jan Karski, and the first woman Secretary of State Madeleine Albright. On May 29, 2012, both Karski (posthumously) and Albright received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from U.S. President Barack Obama.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Fr. Edmund Walsh
  2. ^ The Catholic Diplomat: Edmund A. Walsh, S.J.
  3. ^ The biographic note about Louis J. Gallagher in the back of: China in the Sixteenth Century: The Journals of Matteo Ricci (1942; reprint 1953) - an English translation, by Gallagher, of Matteo Ricci and Nicolas Trigault's De Christiana expeditione apud Sinas suscepta ab Societate Jesu
  4. ^ Walsh, Edmond A., ‘’ The Fall of the Russian Empire: The story of the last of the Romanovs and the coming of the Bolsheviki’’, Little, Brown, & Company, Boston 1928