Former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, the most senior American diplomat to turn 100 this year, sat down with Chinese President Xi Jinping.
It was the same place where, 52 years ago, as National Security Advisor, he met with then-Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai and broke the ice between the two countries.
[Xi Jinping/President of China: “That was a turning point in Sino-US relations, and the Chinese have not forgotten ‘laofengyou’ (old friend).”]
“Laofengyou,” which means old friend, is an expression often used by Chinese presidents when they extend special hospitality to foreign dignitaries.
In response to Xi’s suggestion that he would like to develop a stable relationship with the United States, former Secretary of State Kissinger was quick to respond.
[Henry Kissinger/Former US Secretary of State: “On (the US-China relationship) depends world peace and the progress of human society.”]
Former Secretary Kissinger was the architect of “ping-pong diplomacy,” which began in 1971 with a visit to China by a U.S. table tennis team.
It led to a joint statement between then US President Richard Nixon and Chinese President Mao Zedong, and culminated in the establishment of US-China diplomatic relations in 1979.
Kissinger also met with Chinese Defense Minister Li Shangfu, who is under US sanctions.
Some analysts believe the visit was aimed at easing military tensions between the US and China.
[Yin Hong/Professor, Renmin University of China/Communist Party Advisor: “Based on what the US government has said in this regard, 카지노사이트넷 I think the Chinese government will probably fully agree to restore and strengthen ‘high-level military communication’ between the two countries.”]
The U.S. was somewhat cautious in its response to Kissinger’s visit.
[Matthew Miller/US State Department spokesman: “(Former Secretary Kissinger) was not acting on behalf of the United States government, he was acting on his own volition.”]
With Blinken, Yellen, and now former Secretary Kissinger, a major player in ping-pong diplomacy, visiting China, it will be interesting to see if this will lead to improved U.S.-China relations.