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James Schlesinger, former Secretary of Defense, speaks during a news briefing at the Pentagon in 2004. At the time, he was serving on a panel to review the Department of Defense's detention operations. / Alex Wong, Getty Images

WASHINGTON (AP) - A Washington think tank confirms that James Schlesinger, a hawkish and erudite Republican who served in top Cabinet-level posts under three presidents, has died. He was 85.

The Center for Strategic and International Studies, where Schlesinger was a trustee, confirmed his death Thursday. The onetime University of Virginia economics professor built an extensive national security resume as Defense secretary for Republican presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford and the nation's first Energy secretary under Democratic President Jimmy Carter. Earlier he was a top White House budget official, chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission and director of the Central Intelligence Agency.

Former Sen. Sam Nunn, a Georgia Democrat, who sparred with him as chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee called him "a remarkable public servant."



Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Read the original story: Former Defense Secretary James Schlesinger dies

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