Richard Perle: Farewell, Dark Prince

Friends and critics call Assistant Secretary of Defense Richard Perle by many names -- Prince of Darkness, Darth Vader, evil genius -- and the witty Perle loves them all. By title, Richard (as he is invariably referred to in Washington) is merely one of eleven Assistant Secretaries, a third-echelon Pentagon aide. In practice, Perle is widely acknowledged to be a major architect of U.S. arms-control policy, though to his opponents he is a bureaucratic Machiavelli who deviously torpedoed all reasonable prospects for agreement.

When Perle, 45, submitted his long-anticipated resignation last week, he cited with pride his having blocked "any arms-control...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!