President-Elect Joe Biden tapped in his longtime aide & former diplomat Antony Blinken as the U.S. Secretary of State-designate in his first Cabinet transition announcement on November 23rd.
“We have no time to lose when it comes to our national security and foreign policy. I need a team ready on Day One to help me reclaim America’s seat at the head of the table, and rally the world to meet the biggest challenges we face, and advance our security, prosperity, and values.”
Joe Biden, US President-elect
Who is Antony Blinken?
Born in New York City to Jewish parents, Blinked moved to Paris at the age of 9 where he completed his schooling. He went on to attend Harvard University for his bachelor’s degree and earned his J.D. from Columbia Law School in 1988.
His political career began in 1988 itself when he worked with his father in procuring funds for the Democratic Party nominee Michael Dukakis in the 1988 US Presidential Elections.
From 2009 to 2013 he has worked closely with Joe Biden as his National Security Advisor when the latter was the Vice President.
He was elevated up to the post of U.S. Deputy National Security Advisor in 2013 where he held the post till 2015.
He then went on to become the United States Deputy Secretary of State during the second term of Barack Obama’s administration from 2015 to 2017.
As of 2020, Blinken is the co-founder at WestExec Advisors & works as a global affairs analyst for CNN.
And now in the Biden administration, he’s all set to take charge of the position that is widely regarded as the most powerful in the U.S. cabinet.
The messages from friends and colleagues that I’ve received over the past 15 hours have been humbling.
Honored to announce, officially, that I have been nominated to serve as Secretary of State. If confirmed, this is a mission I will take on with my full heart.
— Antony Blinken (@ABlinken) November 23, 2020
Blinken on India :
On India-U.S. bilateral relationship, Blinken believes that it has been a “success story, going back to the Clinton administration, the Bush administration and then the Obama-Biden administration”.
In July 2020, He has further made remarks on India as reported “fair, stable, and hopefully increasingly democratic and it’s vital to being able to tackle some of these big global challenges.”
On the other hand, Blinken has also been quite vocal & critical about India’s controversial Citizenship Amendment Act, 2020 and the government’s crackdown on certain civic amenities in Jammu & Kashmir post the abrogation of Article 370. In a conversation, he has stated
“Now, you’re right, we obviously have challenges now and real concerns, for example, about some of the actions that the government has taken particularly in cracking down on freedom of movement and freedom of speech in Kashmir, some of the laws on citizenship but you’re always better engaging with a partner and a vitally important one like India when you can speak frankly and directly about areas where you have differences even as you’re working to build greater cooperation and strengthen the relationship going forward. That would be the approach and again, I think we’ve seen evidence that it works.”
Personal Life :
Blinken is married to a public servant, Evan Ryans. He practises Judaism and is fluent in French. Interestingly, he plays guitar and has two of his own singles available on Spotify too! Below is the link of his Artist Profile on Spotify :