Influential diplomat Richard Holbrooke lived in Manhattan but died in Washington Monday night after two long operations failed to repair a tear to his aorta. For the past two years, Holbrooke served as Obama's special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, and had worked for every Democratic president since the late 1960s, including a stint as President Clinton's representative at the UN. He was known as a tough, sometimes abrasive negotiator who also made millions as an investment banker on Wall Street.
Henry Kissinger told the Washington Post, "If Richard calls you and asks you for something, just say yes. If you say no, you'll eventually get to yes, but the journey will be very painful." Holbrooke's final words, uttered to his Pakistani surgeon: "You've got to stop this war in Afghanistan." (Andy Daglas contends "You've got to stop this war in Afghanistan" was the name of Holbrooke's sled as a child.)