Citizen of the world

Editorial by The New York Times,
December 7, 1958.

Ever since the days of Kipling's "East is East" we have been thinking and talking increasingly about the relationship of apparently conflicting - or at least different - societies. Always we have sought some synthesis that would preserve the best in each.

Occasionally we have been blessed with the presence of some individual, who could give human form to our abstractions. We have just lost such a person in the untimely death of Prof. Ahmed S. Bokhari, diplomat from: Pakistan, who served as chief of information in the United Nations. He was, in the best sense, a citizen of the world.

Professor Bokhari had an educational background that embraced both East and West - Panjab University and Cambridge. He was a skilled poet in languages from both sides of the world. He was a good musician in both the Eastern and the Western idiom. And, for both East and West, he was a scholar.

But the synthesis went deeper than this. He was, above all, a great human being, witty, urbane, philosophical and immensely warm of heart. He was free from ostentation or vanity. He loved life and the people in it, regardless of their background of nationality, race, religion or occupation. His spirit, like his mind, knew no narrow frontiers.

The thousands of Americans who were privileged to know him personally feel a grievous personal loss. He was, above all, a friend. But the loss is more than personal. The world, today, is poorer for the passing of a man who gave us a better insight into what good things are possible in a better future.