Jeane Kirkpatrick (1926 – 2006) was an American diplomat and political scientist. An ardent anti-communist, she was a longtime Democrat who became a Republican in 1985. After serving as Ronald Reagan’s foreign policy adviser in his 1980 campaign, she became the first woman to serve as US Ambassador to the United Nations.
Kirkpatrick served on Reagan’s Cabinet on the National Security Council, Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board, Defense Policy Review Board, and chaired the Secretary of Defense Commission on Fail Safe and Risk reduction of the Nuclear Command and Control System.
She wrote a syndicated newspaper column after leaving government service in 1985, specializing in analysis of the activities of the United Nations. In 1986, Kirkpatrick published an article called The Myth of Moral Equivalence in which sharply criticized those who she alleged were claiming that there was ‘no moral difference’ between the Soviet Union and democratic states.
“As I read the utopian socialists, the scientific socialists, the German Social Democrats and revolutionary socialists—whatever I could in either English or French—I came to the conclusion that almost all of them, including my grandfather, were engaged in an effort to change human nature. The more I thought about it, the more I thought this was not likely to be a successful effort. So I turned my attention more and more to political philosophy and less and less to socialist activism of any kind.”