University of Denver

War criminal or role model? Madeleine Albright as Scripps College commencement speaker hits a nerve

War criminal or role model? Madeleine Albright as Scripps College commencement speaker hits a nerve

Perhaps the most nerve-racking duty of a senior class president at Scripps College in Claremont is securing a speaker for commencement. And Jennie Xu thought she had nailed it by booking Madeleine Albright, the first woman to serve as U.S. secretary of State.

Here was a pioneering woman who fled political persecution as a child and became U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and America's chief diplomat. Like Xu and her classmates, Albright also attended an all-women college.

"She was our top choice," Xu said. "I was really, really ecstatic."

But that feeling has been far from universal. Some of Xu's classmates denounced Albright as a "war...

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