1982 TLS by the retired US diplomat, reflecting on his nearly 30 years of government service
Autograph ID: 7135
Condition: Very good, 2 mail folds
Description: “(1894-1984) US diplomat perhaps best known for being a “hawk” on the war in Vietnam and Southeast Asia during the 1960s & 1970s. His father was a founder and Chairman of the Board of National Sugar Refining Co. Bunker studied to be a lawyer, and graduated from Yale in 1916. During WW II he was chairman of the War Production Board’s cane sugar advisory committee. President of National Sugar 1942-51. He retired and remained a member of the board until 1966. President Truman appointed him Ambassador to Argentina in April 1951, then Ambassador to Italy in Feb. 1952. He was president of the American Red Cross Nov. 1953-Nov. 1956 then appointed Ambassador to India & Nepal by President Eisenhower. Ambassador to the Organization of American States 1964–66. President Johnson appointed him Ambassador to South Vietnam 1967–73 replacing Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr. Once in Saigon, he strongly supported the war efforts of Presidents Johnson & Nixon, going so far as to applaud US incursions into Laos and Cambodia. Following the conclusion of the Vietnam War, Bunker headed the US team involved in the drawing up of the 1977 Torrijos-Carter Treaties regarding the Panama Canal Zone. He was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom with Distinction twice, in 1963 & 1967.
TLS on 10 ½ x 7 ¼ personal letterhead, Washington, March 1 1982, to a Washington collector, thanking him for his comments on Bunker’s career. Bunker was “…fortunate in having assignments in countries or areas where we have had important interests or where there had arisen problems requiring urgent solutions” and singles out Italy’s Alcide de Gasperi and India’s Jawaharlal Nehru for praise. Very nice content! With envelope.”