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Hans Morgenthau Dead at 76

July 22, 1980
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Funeral services will be held tomorrow for Hans Joachim Morgenthau, teacher, author and one of this nation’s leading experts on international relations. He died Saturday at 76.

In recent years, Morgenthau was active in the Soviet Jewry movement and in opposition to American policy in the Middle East. He was chairman of the Academic Committee on Soviet Jewry where he had campaigned for the release of Anatoly Shcharansky and other Jewish activists and Soviet dissidents in the USSR.

He was also chairman and founder of the National Committee on American Foreign Policy which was founded in 1974 and which opposed what it saw as U.S. action harmful to Israel. A spokesman for the committee told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that Morgenthau had written a letter scheduled to be released tomorrow expressing extreme concern "about the drift of United States policy in the Middle East." The letter, along with a booklet, "Toward a More Effective U.S. Policy in the Mideast, "is being sent to members of Congress.

Born in Coburg, Germany on Feb. 17, 1904, he received degrees from the Universities of Munich and Frankfurt. He was admitted to the bar in Germany in 1927 and practiced law for three years. Morgenthau went to teach in Geneva in 1932 and when Hitler came to power in Germany the following year he decided not to return. He later became a professor of international law in Madrid before coming to the United States in 1937.


Morgenthau tough at several major American universities but his influence grew during his years at the University of Chicago where he began teaching in 1943 and served as director of the Center for the Study of American Foreign and Military Policy for 17 years.

There his teachings and his most famous book, "Politics Among Nations" (1948), now in several revised editions, influenced many political scientists in the field of foreign affairs. His major argument was for a realistic approach for foreign policy, saying that the U.S. should consider its own national interest rather than concern for world public opinion.

Morgenthau became known to the general public when he became a strong opponent of the Vietnam War. He moved to New York in 1968 where he became Leonard Davis Distinguished Professor of Political Science at the City University of New York From 1974 until recently, he taught at the New School for Social Research.

He wrote for many years for Commentary magazine, until he left in a dispute with its editor, and for many years has contributed to the New ‘Leader. He has written numerous books, including "Scientific Man vs. Power Politics" (1946), and "A New Foreign Policy for the United States" (1969).

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