Powell, Colin Luther


Powell, Colin Luther
▪ 2002

      On Jan. 20, 2001, the engaging former chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff Colin Powell—whose leadership role in the 1991 Persian Gulf War had brought him to the attention of the American public—was sworn in as U.S. secretary of state.

      Born on April 5, 1937, in New York City, Powell was the son of Jamaican immigrants. While attending the City College of New York, Powell joined the Reserve Officers' Training Corps program and rose to become commander of the college's Army ROTC unit. After graduation in 1958, Powell was commissioned a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army, and he served two separate tours (1962–63; 1968–69) in Vietnam. He earned an M.B.A. from George Washington University in Washington, D.C., in 1971, after which he became an assistant to Frank Carlucci, the deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget. Powell later served as a battalion commander in South Korea (1973–74) and in positions at the Pentagon (1974–75). In 1975 he was promoted to the rank of colonel, and in the early 1980s he became a major general and the senior military assistant to the secretary of defense.

      In 1986 Powell was appointed deputy director of the National Security Council under Carlucci, who was then Pres. Ronald Reagan's national security affairs assistant. The following year Powell succeeded Carlucci, and in early 1989 he assumed command of the Army Forces Command. In April of that year he was elevated to the rank of four-star general, and in August he was appointed chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the first African American and at age 52 the youngest person to occupy the highest post in the military.

      After retiring from the army in 1993, Powell remained active in politics, helping to broker a compromise in which Haiti's military regime ceded power to elected Pres. Jean-Bertrand Aristide. Popular with broad segments of the electorate, Powell was lobbied by both the Democratic and Republican parties to run for national office. Although polls in 1995 showed Powell a formidable contender for president, he declined to run. Nonetheless, he publicly declared himself a Republican, despite his support for abortion rights and affirmative action—two issues that put him outside the Republican Party's mainstream.

      As secretary of state Powell spent the early months of 2001 attempting to broker an end to hostilities between Israel and the Palestinians and to gain support for loosening the UN-imposed trade sanctions against Iraq. In June he attended a UN AIDS conference and pledged U.S. financial support for an international fund to combat the disease. Though he was scheduled to attend the UN World Conference Against Racism, which began on August 31, Powell led a U.S. boycott in response to Arab efforts to single out Israel as racist. In the wake of the September 11 terrorist attacks in the U.S., Powell focused on building international support for U.S. actions against the Taliban to force it to cease harbouring Osama bin Laden, whom the U.S. blamed for the attacks.

Michael I. Levy

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Powell,Colin Luther — Powell, Colin Luther. Born 1937. American general who served as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (1989 1996) and was influential in planning U.S. strategy during the Persian Gulf War. * * * …   Universalium

  • Powell, Colin (Luther) — born April 5, 1937, New York, N.Y., U.S. U.S. general and statesman. The son of Jamaican immigrants, he entered the U.S. Army after college and served in the Vietnam War (1962–63, 1968–69). After holding various posts in the Pentagon and… …   Universalium

  • Powell, Colin Luther — ► (n. 1937) Militar y político estadounidense. Fue la primera persona de raza negra en ocupar en E.U.A. el mando supremo de los ejércitos (1989 1993). Fue secretario de estado de 2001 a 2005 …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Powell, Colin (Luther) — (n. 5 abr. 1937, Nueva York, N.Y., EE.UU.). Oficial de ejército y funcionario público estadounidense. Hijo de inmigrantes jamaicanos, entró al ejército después de realizar estudios universitarios y prestó servicios en la guerra de Vietnam… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Colin Luther Powell — Colin Powell Pour les articles homonymes, voir Powell. Général Colin Powell Portrait officiel de Colin L. Powell …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Powell, Colin — ▪ United States general and statesman in full  Colin Luther Powell   born April 5, 1937, New York, New York, U.S.    U.S. general and statesman. He was chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (1989–93) and secretary of state (2001–05), the first… …   Universalium

  • Colin luther Powell — noun United States general who was the first African American to serve as chief of staff; later served as Secretary of State under President George W. Bush (born 1937) • Syn: ↑Powell, ↑Colin Powell • Instance Hypernyms: ↑general, ↑full general,… …   Useful english dictionary

  • Colin L. Powell — (2001) Colin Luther Powell (* 5. April 1937 in New York) ist ein ehemaliger General der US Army und Politiker. Von 1987 bis 1989 war er Nationaler Sicherheitsberater und anschließend von 1989 bis 1993 Vorsitzender der …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Powell — Powell, Cecil Frank Powell, Colin Luther * * * (as used in expressions) Baden Powell (de Gilwell), Robert Stephenson Smyth, 1 barón Hubble, Edwin P(owell) Lear, William Powell Powell, Adam Clayton, Jr. Powell, Anthony (Dymoke) Powell, Bud Earl… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Colin Powell — This article is about the American politician. For the English football (soccer) player, see Colin Powell (footballer). General Colin L. Powell KCB MSC …   Wikipedia


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