No American envoy has ever burst on the diplomatic scene and grabbed center stage in the theater of foreign relations like Madeleine Albright. Navigating difficult terrain as few can, Thomas Blood provides exclusive interviews with, and revealing anecdotes from, politicians, friends, adversaries, and colleagues, including former Secretary of State Warren Christopher, Senators Leahy, Mikulski, Kerrey, Helms, Reid, and Rockefeller, and House Minority Leader Dick Gephardt. This unique biography reveals the dramatic story of the first woman U.S. Secretary of State. Rather than providing a simple chronology, Blood focuses on the defining moments in Madeleine Albright's life, identifying the periods that best open a window on the Secretary of State's uncanny ability to triumph over adversity, her unparalleled success in politics and her meteoric rise to dominance in the world of foreign policy. From her family's thrilling escape from Czechoslovakia to her astounding rise to power to her victories and setbacks as the head of American foreign policy, Madeleine Albright's life unfolds like a major motion picture. An immensely readable biography that illuminates key experiences in Albright's career and personal life, Madam Secretary introduces us to Madeleine Albright the person, the politician, the policymaker-- a woman for our times.
In this lightweight bio, Blood, a Washington, D.C., lobbyist, reduces the productive life of our current secretary of state to puffery: "President Clinton...knew that Madeleine Albright's greatest asset was simply being Madeleine Albright." Laden with quotes from admirers, the text describes Albright as a brilliant diplomat, a wonderful mother, an outstanding hostess and a trusted friend to luminaries such as Barbara Streisand. Blood covers Albright's career as U.S. ambassador to the U.N. (1993-1996), a period that encompassed the U.S. invasion of Haiti, the massacres in Rwanda and the war in Bosnia, describing these events in a way that places his subject in the most flattering light. The revelation, made public immediately after Albright's confirmation as secretary of state, that she had Jewish grandparents who perished in the Holocaust--not Catholic ancestors as she had stated--led to rumors that she had deliberately misrepresented her heritage. Blood dismisses these charges as unfounded. Photos not seen by PW.