June 25, 1982
It is with the most profound regret that I accept your letter of resignation. Almost forty years ago you committed yourself to the service of your country. Since that time your career has been marked by a succession of assignments demanding the highest level of personal sacrifice, courage and leadership. As a soldier and statesman facing challenges of enormous complexity and danger, you have established a standard of excellence and achievement seldom equaled in our history. On each occasion you have reflected a quality of wisdom which has been critical to the resolution of the most anguishing problems we have faced during the past generation -- the conclusion of the Vietnam war, the transfer of executive authority at a time of national trauma and most recently, advancing the cause of peace among nations.
The nation is deeply in your debt. As you leave I want you to know of my deep personal appreciation, and in behalf of the American people I express my gratitude and respect. You have been kind enough to offer your continued counsel and you may be confident that I will call upon you in the years ahead. Nancy joins me in extending our warmest personal wishes to you and Pat.
[The Honorable Alexander M. Haig, Jr., The Secretary of State, Washington, D.C. 20520]
June 25, 1982
Dear Mr. President:
Your accession to office on January 20, 1981, brought an opportunity for a new and forward looking foreign policy resting on the cornerstones of strength and compassion. I believe that we shared a view of America's role in the world as the leader of free men and an inspiration for all. We agreed that consistency, clarity and steadiness of purpose were essential to success. It was in this spirit that I undertook to serve you as Secretary of State.
In recent months, it has become clear to me that the foreign policy on which we embarked together was shifting from that careful course which we had laid out. Under these circumstances, I feel it necessary to request that you accept my resignation. I shall always treasure the confidence which you reposed in me. It has been a great honor to serve in your Administration, and I wish you every success in the future.
Alexander M. Haig, Jr.
[The President, The White House]