Antony Blinken — diplomat, Obama administration alum, rock and roll legend?
President-elect Joe Biden is expected to select Blinken, one of his closest foreign policy advisers, as incoming secretary of state. Blinken was deputy national security adviser when Biden was vice president, after joining the State Department during the Clinton administration.
But aside from his long career as a high-level diplomat, Blinken reportedly has a relaxed and artistic side. A 2013 report from The Washington Post noted he's "almost universally regarded as unassuming and collegial," and described his inclination toward filmmaking and music.
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As a college student, he "cherished a John Lennon autograph his mother scored for him one day after she spent hours reading poetry with the musician and Yoko Ono." It seems his love for the Beatles stood the test of time, as the Post notes he "periodically dusts off his guitar to jam the blues and Beatles covers with [former] White House press secretary Jay Carney and other Washington pals."
It's not just cover songs for Blinken, though. He also has two original love songs, uploaded under the historical-sounding name "Ablinken," available on Spotify.
The Guardian notes Blinken will mark a major shift from Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's style. As he once told Grover on Sesame Street, "We all have something to learn and gain from one another even when it doesn't seem at first like we have much in common." This framework, writes The Guardian, will be his strategy in "soothing the frayed nerves of western allies, reassuring them that the US is back as a conventional team player."
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