I did not realize Henry Kissinger was still with us. Indeed, he is, only it turns out, he’s presently in China. In a surprise move, the 100-year-old former Secretary of State traveled to Beijing to meet with Li Shangfu, China’s Defense Minister, on Tuesday.
Henry Kissinger meets #China’s defence minister in surprise visit to Beijing
His meeting with Li Shangfu comes amid hopes of improved ties.
I’d say It’s more like an emergency visit, same as Blinken, because they see China preparing for action with TW.https://t.co/zdUmAZbxI9
— Indo-Pacific News – Geo-Politics & Military News (@IndoPac_Info) July 18, 2023
According to the U.S. State Department’s website, Kissinger is visiting as a private individual and not for the U.S. Government. The timing of Kissinger’s visit is still a bit strange, as it follows recent visits from current Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, and former Secretary of State and current climate envoy John Kerry.
What was the purpose behind Kissinger’s trip?
According to a statement, during the surprise visit, Kissinger declared that he was China’s friend and encouraged the two countries to work more closely together.
“The United States should avoid confrontation, eliminate misunderstandings, and coexist peacefully with China.” “History and practice have repeatedly shown that neither the United States nor China can afford the other to be treated as an enemy,” Kissinger stated, according to a Reuters translated version.
Li did not name names but said that some people in the U.S. had failed to meet China halfway, which caused Sino-U.S. relationships to reach their lowest point.
Blinken’s visit to the U.S. in June led to an agreement between the U.S.
Blinken remained optimistic about the talks, describing his discussions with Chinese officials in a “candid and productive” manner. However, they failed to achieve an agreement with the Chinese for the resumption of military-to-military communications, which had been billed as the top priority by the United States.
Blinken later said that the U.S. had set limited goals for the trip and they were achieved. Blinken said that he raised the issue “repeatedly” of military-to-military communications.
Yellen’s early July visit was less than auspicious. It included an embarrassing display, demonstrating weakness.
Yellen made a grave diplomatic mistake on Saturday when she bowed to the Chinese Vice Premier He Lifeng at least three different times.
This is a serious sign of American weakness in front of the Chinese. Especially the deep and repeated bowing. Biden officials acting so desperate to bend down for the Chinese is a signal that the Chinese can step on us. Lifeng backed up to give her more space to bow to him like she was his servant.
Though it isn’t entirely clear to whom Li was referring when he accused “some people in the U.S.” of failing to meet China halfway, tensions between the two nations have unquestionably been running high. So is Kissinger’s “unofficial” visit just that? Or does it signal mounting concerns that the tensions may soon boil over?
Kissinger played a key role in normalizing the relations between China, and the U.S., over half a century ago.
Kissinger’s trip to Beijing comes 52 years after the secret visit he made to Beijing in July of 1971. This visit paved the path for Richard Nixon, then the U.S. president at the time, to normalize the relations between Mao Zedong and the U.S.
In China, more than 50 years after his birth, the 100-year-old is still widely admired. Kissinger’s contribution to U.S.-China relations was cited in a Global Times article from May as “one of his career highlights.”
There’s something that tells me there is more to the story.