The legacy of Dan McMichael
“I know this might be more information than you're looking for,” Dan McMichael often would say well into his telephone calls about security matters, “but it really is important to this discussion and has far-ranging implications.”
In the end, once he had fully briefed you, it wasn't and it was.
Mr. McMichael, 87, of Shadyside, the consummate gentleman, died early Monday. He was an internationally recognized expert and the go-to person for the unvarnished facts about ballistic missile defense. He helped guide a number of important American institutions — the National Strategy Information Center and the Center for Strategic & International Studies, among them — as a member of their boards of directors. He also was past chairman of the executive committee of the Prague Security Studies Institute.
Additionally, McMichael, a true patriot, served as chairman of President Ronald Reagan's Strategic Minerals Task Force in 1980. His efforts live on as the debate over the control and sale of rare-earth minerals returns to the forefront.
McMichael also was longtime secretary of the Sarah Scaife and Carthage foundations. He even found time to write a novel, reissued just last year.
Above all, McMichael was a scholar. Ralph Waldo Emerson once wrote that the “office of the scholar is to cheer, to raise, and to guide men by showing them facts against appearances.” And that is Dan McMichael's legacy.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.